April 04, 2003

"RIAA 4" lawsuits and "RIAA math" damages

[A mailing-list letter I wrote regarding Record Industry Sues 4 Students Running File-Sharing Networks]

Note copies of the lawsuits are available at:

Note one detail that isn't covered in news reports: The damages are asked for TWICE. Once for direct infringement, and another instance for contributory infringement.

So it totals: $150,000 x 2 x list of very roughly 100 items = Approximately 30 MILLION DOLLARS.

Now, while those are statutory damages, not actual damages claimed, it's still an absurd number. I refuse to believe that number has any sane connection whatsoever to lost potential profits. The entire disposable income of the non-rich student population at each university probably doesn't approach 30 million dollars.

This is "RIAA math" with an almost literal vengeance.

By Seth Finkelstein | posted in copyblight | on April 04, 2003 09:33 PM (Infothought permalink) | Followups
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