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"Joel Tenebaum fights back with the help of leading internet lawyers"  (Source: http://joelfightsback.com/)
Massachusetts student to pay $22,500 per shared song

Joel Tenebaum, a graduate student at Boston University, is the nation’s second defendant to go to trial against the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on file sharing charges. In July of 2009, his case went to federal court where the judge ruled that the defendant pay $675,000 in damages to the RIAA. The only other file sharing defendant to trial against the RIAA was Jammie Thomas-Rasset, who had to pay $1.92 million for sharing 24 songs on Kazaa.

The Obama Administration, which recently asked five former RIAA lawyers to serve in the Justice Department, is supporting the verdict, stating that copyright infringement, "creates a public harm that Congress is determined must be deterred."

In lieu of the tension between the Chinese Government and Google regarding the recent IP theft and  account hacking problems, it isn’t hard to see why the Obama Administration is standing so firmly against copyright infringements. Whether a defendant is sharing files or hacking into a corporation, their act violated copyright laws, and failing to take action could make the administration's policy look inconsistent.

Under the copyright act, fines are determined by the judge and jury and can range from $750 to $150,000 . The Justice Department defends its ruling with the following statement.

The current damages range provides compensation for copyright owners because, inter alia, there exist situations in which actual damages are hard to quantify. Furthermore, in establishing the range, Congress took into account the need to deter the millions of users of new media from infringing copyrights in an environment where many violators believe they will go unnoticed.

Tenebaum’s defense team is going back to work on $22,500 per-song ruling, in hopes of lowering the penalty to $750 per-song.



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On Copyright Legislation
By armulyman on 1/23/2010 9:02:30 PM , Rating: 0
NOTE : This comment is not directly related to the article, but is rather a comment on our copyright system as a whole. If you are looking for witty commentary please skip. /NOTE

I've been considering this issue for quite some time, as I'm sure all of you have as well. There are very few possible solutions that I have heard thus far to our copyright conundrum. The few that I know of are:

1. Continue rule by fear campaign, suing individuals into the ground.

2. Three strikes legislation, (really an extension of the rule by fear campaign) banning those who do not comply from the interwebs entirely.

3. Create a tax system whereby artists can be paid, and content can be downloaded freely by all. (As my father once put it "socialize the wide area network")

4. Step up advertising mechanisms and product placement, creating for artists an alternative means of profiting from their works.

5. Abolish copyright entirely, make piracy totally legal, and for-go the notion that any one should be paid for their creative works.

6. Sodomize RIAA's, MPAA's and all other AA's with large retractable batons. (Arguably the best solution proposed thus far)

OBVIOUSLY these solutions all have major drawbacks (Namely we do not yet have the technology to make large enough batons).

Rule by fear is the preferred method of dictators, newfags, oldfags, and Hitlers. We CANNOT have that, monarchy's are bad news.

A tax system would obviously never work because keeping track of that many works of art and their methods and volume of distribution would be nearly impossible.

Finally advertising will never be a strong enough support system for the entire interwebs, it's sort of like the icing on the cake (and we can't make a whole cake out of icing can we?)

SO let me propose a new solution to our problem:

(yes I'm quite aware that somebody somewhere has already thought of this, but I don't see many people discussing it)

The major problem right now for the movie, tv, and pornography industries is Tubes. If you have ever been to watch-movies-online.tv or to justintv.com or to one of the many many pornography tubes out there, then you should know what I'm talking about.

The problem is thusly: the content is all user uploaded so the tube can claim ignorance. The copyright holder can send a cease and desist to the tube but will have to do so for each and every upload of their content, basically making every copyright holder responsible for policing the whole internet.

Options like Netflix streaming and Hulu, are rapidly saturating the market, but there really is no incentive to pay when you can just as easily get it for free.

So what if: we were to pass a new set of laws requiring each and every tube to make public the number of times a particular video has been viewed.

THEN make it so that a copyright holder can send a bill for each viewer to the tube itself. The requirement being that the copyright holder have another location that the particular piece of content can be purchased , and that the bill for each view will not exceed the price of the cheapest location it is available for legal viewing.

ie: Avatar the movie is available for new release viewing for $9 on Netflix.com, Megavideo.com has streamed it to 1,000,000 people thus 20th Century Fox has the right to bill Megavideo.com for the sum total of $9,000,000, but it CANNOT bill for $9,000,001 because it offered it cheaper on Netflix.

Now this is way too high a cost for ANY tube to sustain. There's no way for Megavideo to shell out that much cash for each new release movie that it exhibits. However, there is now an incentive for Megavideo.com to log each and every IP address that viewed this particular video.

Next make it so that the Tubes are allowed to pass the individual cost of $9 on to the ISP for each individual IP address. Then of course the ISP would have the right to bill the individual user.

The end user would have the ultimate responsibility for paying the cost, if it was viewed through a proxy, the proxy owner would have that responsibility.

This would:

Create an incentive for the Movie/TV/Pr0n industries to exhibit new release works online.

Create an incentive for Tubes to more carefully police their users.

Create an incentive for end users to use more legetimate channels to view media

and finally it would create an incentive for the end user to police their individual wifi connections. (Helping to eliminate the infamous "my neighbor was stealing my internets" excuse.)

Would also work on sites such as Rapidshare

The problems with this solution:

Somebody could post a video and charge WAAYY too much for it, and this could be unannounced to the end user.

This still wouldn't eliminate Piracy channels like Torrents and Gneutella.

This would be hard to implement on things like music, as they aren't typically accessed through illegitimate streaming services.

Sorry for the long post.

Please consider this idea and respond with your thoughts.




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