COPYRIGHT
Record labels, internet

The long running Recording Industry of America (RIAA) v Jammie Thomas-Rassett court case has taken yet another twist, this time in the defendant’s favour, when a US Judge reduced jury awarded damages of $1.5 million down to $54,000. Thomas shared 24 songs illegally using Kazaa and was sued by the Recording Industry Association Of America. At first hearing, Thomas was ordered to pay $222,000 to the record industry in damages. This decision was then set aside and a second trial was held and the jury hearing the case ordered Thomas, a single mother of limited means, to pay $1.92 million in damages. A judge subsequently ruled the jury had got it wrong, and slashed the damages figure to $54,000.

The RIAA was willing to accept that figure but Thomas refused. And so the RIAA appealed the judge’s amendment of the original jury decision, sending the case back into court for a third time, where the jury awarded the record industry $1.5 million in damages. That decision has now been overturned and  the judge hearing the case has again ruled that the jury were wrong to order Thomas to pay the sum of $1.5 million saying this was “outrageously high” and “appalling – and cut the award back down to $54,000.

CMU Daily 25.07.11  www.thecmuwebsite.com and seehttp://www.musiclawupdates.com/10Decemberlawupdates.htm