Court: RIAA can't have names of downloaders

Discussion in 'Music' started by Michael St. Clair, Dec 19, 2003.

  1. Michael St. Clair

    Joined:
    May 3, 1999
    Messages:
    6,001
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
  2. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2000
    Messages:
    3,181
    Likes Received:
    44
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    Central FL
    Real Name:
    Phil
    It is not surprising given the extreme protection of privacy in "The Electronic Communications Privacy Act." A (state, local federal) government authority cannot even get hold of data unless conditions are met such as the permission of the customer or a subpoena so the RIAA was pretty stupid to waste resources doing this.
     
  3. John_Berger

    John_Berger Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Messages:
    2,489
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    And in another brick in the side of the head of the music industry, the Dutch Supreme Court, the highest European body yet to rule on file-sharing software, ruled today that the developers of Kazaa cannot be held liable for how individuals use it.

    The RIAA must be totally apoplectic right now.
     
  4. Dave Bennett

    Dave Bennett Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2000
    Messages:
    1,167
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I completely agree with this logic.
    Just because a technology can be used for illegal activities doesn't mean you should hold the creators liable. It would be like someone bringing a lawsuit against a car company because someone intentionally hit someone with a car and killed them.
    While the "legitimate" uses of file sharing services may be few, there are files out there that can be legally shared, such as MP3s by independent artists etc.
    The RIAA needs to wake up and realize that the way to win customers back to traditional CD buying is to put out better music, lower cd prices, and include extras on the cd(such as some of the ECD content). For example, I bought a CD that when placing it in your computer allowed you to download a 5 song EP from the internet. That's not to say I couldn't have just found the CD and the EP on Limewire or Kazaa but it's things like that which add a little bit of value to a CD purchase.
     
  5. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2002
    Messages:
    13,237
    Likes Received:
    894
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Real Name:
    Malcolm
    I'd love to see all those the RIAA has threatened with lawsuits now turn around and sue the RIAA for illegal invasion of privacy. [​IMG]
     
  6. MattBu

    MattBu Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2003
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    Oh God PLEASE unleash Johnny Cochran on them.
     
  7. John_Berger

    John_Berger Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Messages:
    2,489
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Please, NO! I really don't want to hear "If the download's legit, you must acquit!" or "Was the moon waning or waxing when you attempted to illegally get the user's information from their ISP?"

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2001
    Messages:
    6,394
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    Lee
    I agree with Michael on this one-a real victory. [​IMG]



    [​IMG]

    Couldn't happen to a "nicer" group of people. [​IMG]
     
  9. Dick

    Dick Producer
    Supporter

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    6,308
    Likes Received:
    2,325
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Maine
    Real Name:
    Rick
    Well, Universal's move to lower CD prices is fine for the consumer, but sucks for the retailer, whose profit margins are w-a-y-y-y cut back because wholesale prices did not go down proportionately. Mom and Pop shops get f**cked again.
     
  10. DavidLW

    DavidLW Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    I'm not a RIAA fan but they did nothing illegal as it was legal at the time they did it. It may not have been right or just but a lower court did say that the providers must supply the data to the RIAA. Most of all, there's no such thing as privacy when on the internet and you can not expect any privacy protection when you're doing something illegal. The police can raid your home because you were manufacturing Meth and you have no right to privacy. The police in most states can search your car on a traffic violation. The set back to the RIAA is that they must first obtain a court order before the internet provider has to provide any information. As they should becasuse the RIAA is not law enforcement or the all mighty IRS. This will make it more expensive for the people they do sue and they will continue to sue because, in thier mind at least, they're trying to preventing the loss of billions of dollars.
     
  11. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2000
    Messages:
    3,181
    Likes Received:
    44
    Trophy Points:
    1,610
    Location:
    Central FL
    Real Name:
    Phil
    I would hardly equate to what the RIAA tried vs. the manuf. of Meth. It would be closer to the equivalent to someone going to a chemical supply store and saying give me access to whatever any customer bought from the store vs. I think these 4 customers may be a problem and here's a court order for their records. Even the IRS needs a court order to get access to customer records, even the FBI. The "Electronic Communications Privacy Act" (http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/2701.html) is there to prevent abuses. Working (before retiring) in the internet/telecomm industry in the tax area I've personally told ther IRS, other federal agencies and states or localities doing tax or other audits they can either comply with the terms of the act or kiss my you know what. The RIAA could bought the illegal downloaded stuff over time and worked with law enforcement to get the worst offenders. They chose a silly route. Other groups have worked with the system to get child molesters and with the Secret Service which oversees internet fraud. The government can't require the providers to give them information without giving evidence to a court on illegal activity and then following the law and the RIAA wants too much. People can download to have a music server to pipe music throughout the house or send the files another server to pipe music through their business. As long as they have done nothing illegal does not mean the RIAA should have access to what they have done just because they've downloaded a bunch and transferred some stuff. It take more than that.
     
  12. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2001
    Messages:
    17,983
    Likes Received:
    2,363
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Albany, NY
    This isn't a very good comparison. For one, it's law enforcement doing the raids in these examples, not a private trade group. For another, unless the police have substantial reason to suspect that you are manufacturing Meth, they cannot raid your house without a warrant. Driving is a different matter, mainly because the expectations of privacy are different in a vehicle where driving is a privelege not a right. For another, it is much easier to obtain reasonable suspicion of crimes with a vehicle. If the driver rolls down the window and a blast of pot smoke hits the officer in the face, there's reason to suspect illicit activities and the officer can search. But if there are no reasons to suspect wrongdoing and the pot is out of sight (ie. under the seat) then the officer must ask permission to search your vehicle. Most people agree because they are scared not to.
     
  13. DavidLW

    DavidLW Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Remember,the RIAA has not brought any suits against downloaders or allege downloaders. All the suits have been against uploaders (people allowing others access to thier music on the net). You got to remember that the RIAA already knows what IP address is uploading. They are not asking the provider to supply them with this info. What they don't know is who owns the IP address. The uploaders are broadcasting themselves on the internet because all someone has to do is to put a search on the internet and find out where to obtain a certain song. No special equipment needed. No snooping, wire tap or spying is involve. Just the proper software (that is available to everyone for free). Every song has the info of where it came from and what computer it came from inbedded in the packet. When I say there's no privacy on the internet, I mean that everything you do on the internet leaves a trail in the form of an IP address. Not only that but every ethernet card and modem has a serial number that is also broadcasted. A recent case is the person that stole the Wells Fargo computer and logged on the internet and got caught. The FBI and internet providers were already monitoring the internet for this stolen computer. To expect privacy on the net is totally different than actually having privacy. Uploading is like selling meth out of your bedroom window or having a joint in plain view when stopped for a traffic violation. The courts already sides with the RIAA in that, if you share your music with everyone on the internet, you are violating the law. You are not cover under the fair use law. Now, downloading is another matter as it's tougher to prove that a law has been broken. But all the RIAA have to do is to go after the uploaders. Getting a court order to have the provider give up the owner of the IP address of an uploader is just a speed bump in the process. Providing evidence that someone is uploading illegally is the easy part. You can't download if noone is uploading. It's like going after the drug dealers and not the users.
     
  14. John_Berger

    John_Berger Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Messages:
    2,489
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes. The police. The RIAA, however, is not a law enforecement agency. Your analogy would be more appropriate to a situation where you break into my home and say, "I'm holding you until the police arrive". When they do arrive, I will be charging you with traspassing and unlawful entry since you're not a law enforcement officer.
     
  15. MattBu

    MattBu Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2003
    Messages:
    186
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    So you would then be saying that you don't believe in the 4th amendment?

    The RIAA has no right to invade ANYONE'S privacy as they are a trade group.

    It would be akin to the NRA gathing information on people who believe in gun control - THEN releasing it to the media.
     
  16. DavidLW

    DavidLW Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If I was driving around town in my car I would expect (if not demand) a certain amount of privacy even though my license plate reveals who I am. However, if I cause damage to some elses property and flee am I afforded the same amount of privacy. If some one saw my plates should he withhold that info to protect my privacy. If the person who saw the accident couldn't stick around and wait for the police to arrive, shouldn't he a least give the license plate number to the owner of the property that got damaged. Does the insurance company of the property that was damaged have the right to sue me in a civil court to recover thier cost? If yes, then shouldn't they have the right to know who owned the car that caused the damage or is that an invasion of my privacy. You can not hide behind the 4th amendment when you do something illegal, you can not hide behind the 2nd amendent when you use a gun to commit a murder and you can not use the 1st amendant to justify an illegal act.

    Don't confuse what the RIAA is doing to uploaders with having them arrested. They are not charging the uploaders with any Penal Code violation. They are bringing civil charges against the uploaders to recover monetary damages. To my knowledge no one has been arrested and no one comes knocking on the uploaders door to take away their computers. If you have enough evidence against some one, you too can sue that person in a civil court to recover monetary damages. You don't need law enfforcement to gather infomation pertaining to your case. All you need is the courts permissiom (supena) and who ever has the infomation must turn it over. It happens all the time. Ever hear of Small Claims Court? Ever see Judge Wopner and "The People's Court" on TV?
     
  17. Dave Bennett

    Dave Bennett Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2000
    Messages:
    1,167
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Just because they're settling out of court doesn't mean they're brining civil suits. There is the threat of possible criminal prosecution. The RIAA could push for jail time but they know they'd never get a conviction so instead if they were to bring it to trial, they'd push for compensatory and perhaps puntitive damages.
    http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap5.html#506 I'm not entirely familar with these suits specifically, just wanted to clear up that they COULD try to bring them up on criminal charges.
    A misdemeanor in most instances, but still criminal.
    Am I the only one reminded of the Seinfeld episode with all the bootlegging of movies whenever I read about copyright infringement? Man, I can't wait to get my copy of "Deathblow" [​IMG]
    here's to not having been served a subpoena [​IMG]
     
  18. DavidLW

    DavidLW Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I believe,and I may be wrong, but in a criminal court case the court has the final say in dismissing the charge. Another word, if you charge some one with a crime and later descide to drop the charge, the court can still persue the charge without your help (if it's to the best interest of the public). In a criminal case it's you and the people against so and so. The court represents the people. In a civil case the court is only an intermedary and only serves to see that a fair settlement is reached between disputing parties. Guilt and innocence only comes into play for punitive damages. If you settle out of court then it's over and no help from a judge is needed and the case never goes to trial. Now the RIAA can bring criminal charges against you if you don't show up for court after being served a supena or fail to pay a sttlement reached in a court case. Most of the people sued by the RIAA settles out of court because it's only a few thousand dollars. If they choose to go to trial, the judgement could be in the hundreds of thousands. It could also be nothing, if you think the RIAA doesn't have a case.
     
  19. DavidLW

    DavidLW Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I don't know why or how some of the people on this board got the idea that the latest ruling against the RIAA meant that the RIAA was doing something illegal and thus downloading and uploading copyrighted music is O.K.. Even most of the headlines to the news articles implies that it was a victory for downloaders and uploaders and a defeat for the RIAA.

    From what I read, the latest ruling stated that the RIAA must first file a suit against the owner of the IP address before the internet provider is required to give up his identity.

    Before this ruling, the RIAA would have a list, of say 1000, IP addresses that was uploading music. They would bring this list to a court clerk and request a supena to have the internet providers identify the owner of these addresses. Then they would decide to sue maybe the worst 200 violators and send notices to the others to decease their practice or be sued. This method was O.K.ed by a lower court. At no time did the RIAA bullied the providers into giving up the info. They bullied the court system and did it leagally.

    With this latest ruling they can no longer get the identities of the owners of the IP addresses and then decide which one to sue and which one to let go with a slap on the wrist.

    No where is there any mention former practices by the RIAA that constituted an invasion of privacy or any illegal means of gathering information. If you read the link provided by D. Bennet above you will see the so far the RIAA have been within their rights. I'm sure that the RIAA can hire competant lawyers to defend their case.

    I know that the RIAA isn't winning any popularity contest. And some of their tactics may seem extreme (flooding the Napster server with bad MP3 files, suing software makers and internet providers to name a few). But let's not pretend that downloading or uploading some one elses copyrighted music is anywhere near legal or right. I don't side with the RIAA on many issues. Their attempts to levy a tax on blank media because it might be used to copy music, forcing aerobics instructors to join their union if they play other musicians copyrighted music during their classes or forcing small businesses to pay annual fees if they want to pipe recorded music through their P.A. system. But I see nothing wrong with a union trying to protect the income of it's members.
     
  20. Dave Bennett

    Dave Bennett Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2000
    Messages:
    1,167
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

    Wow I've not heard of that one. That's absolutely insane!
    I'm in agreement with you David. I agree that there's really no doubt about it that it's not legal. I used to download quite a bit but the time it took, poor sound quality, and now the slight risk of legal action has all but killed any interest I had in P2P music downloads. The iTunes store has definately helped ween me off of P2P music downloads as well (that and not being on a Campus Network where thousands of songs are available just on the LAN).
    I think it's interesting though that more artists are offering full lentgh(and sometimes even full album) streaming previews on their web sites. That too may be a nice little nudge to put a questionable CD purchase into the "Buy" column.
    I still say that if CD prices were in the 7-12 dollar range music sales wouldn't be plummeting as much. I guess that's the appeal of the Used CD store.
     

Share This Page