I seriously think the recording industry needs to get over itself. Suing a single mother, with four children, over downloading music on the internet. I get it, musicians need to be paid, but I don’t think they need $1.9 million for 24 crappy songs.
The recording industry secured a resounding victory last week when a Minneapolis jury awarded the four major labels $1.92 million in damages after unanimously finding that a 32-year-old mother had willfully infringed on their copyrights by downloading and sharing 24 songs on the Kazaa peer-to-peer network.
But a question arose after the verdict about whether the sheer size of the damages could lead to a backlash against an industry that is already portrayed in some quarters as overreaching. Sony BMG attorney Wade Leak, who testified at the trial, said he was “shocked” by the damages award.
No one expects that the labels will collect the entire amount from Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a 32-year-old Brainerd, Minn., mother of four who testified during the retrial that her ex-boyfriend or sons, then 8 and 10, were most likely responsible for downloading and distributing the songs. Thomas-Rasset lost her previous trial in 2007 and was ordered to pay $222,000, only to achieve a now-pyrrhic victory when the court tossed the verdict because of a faulty jury instruction.
I hope they do have an industry backlash. The labels have been drinking the Kool-aid for way too long, and living high on the hog. It’s time to give musicians more money and more control over their music. Fans SHOULD pay for the music but at a reasonable price.
Hopefully, this poor woman will just claim bankruptcy and the labels will never see their money. Better yet, Obama or Congress will get involved and issue a maximum amount that the labels could win per song. The only person winning here are the lawyers. The musicians will probably see a TINY TINY TINY amount of money. This is completely ridiculous and a waste of everyones time. Poor woman.