lengthy legal battle between the record industry and P2P service LimeWire, the
popular service is now under fire by indie musicians. A separate music industry
trade group with a focus on independent musicians wants to make sure it gets
paid while the RIAA collects monetary damages from LimeWire.
The Merlin BV group, representing at least 12,000 indie music labels, has taken
aim at LimeWire founder Mark Gorton and the shuttered P2P business.
During the LimeWire-RIAA out-of-court settlement agreement in May, Merlin BV
reportedly was supposed to collect some of the money.
However, "the Lime Entities simply refused" to pay according to PC Magazine, and the group seeks "no less than the
amount of the cash payment made to the major labels." Specifically, Merlin
is looking for a sum in the neighborhood of $5 million from Gorton and LimeWire
-- a monetary amount that they'll probably be awarded -- as the group first
issued LimeWire with a cease and desist order in September 2008.
The group waited more than two years after promising not to directly sue if the
RIAA's labels were able to collect their money first.
As part of its settlement with the copyright groups, LimeWire accepted its role
in rampant copyright infringement among its users. Furthermore, the RIAA issued
a statement and promised that musicians would be able to receive compensation,
though it's a "decision for the individual plaintiffs."
Former LimeWire users have moved on and found P2P services, BitTorrent, and
other popular services available to users. Former LimeWire users were also
informed that some of their sensitive personal information may have been
published -- another major side effect related to P2P -- with the popular file
sharing company also accepting responsibility for this problem.
There are multiple different P2P networks currently in use, and copyright
groups have only targeted major programs. As of late, however, the federal government
has become more involved with copyright enforcement and government-led
crackdowns on organized piracy rings. There will be an interesting
continued battle between copyright groups and file sharers trying to stay one