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Does the RIAA Fear Counterclaims? 245

Posted by kdawson
from the deploy-driftnets dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes, "The RIAA seems to have a fear of counterclaims. In Elektra v. Schwartz, a case against a woman with Multiple Sclerosis, the RIAA is protesting on technical grounds Ms. Schwartz's inclusion of a counterclaim against them for attorneys fees. This counterclaim includes as an exhibit the ACLU, EFF, Public Citizen brief in Capitol v. Foster, which decried the RIAA's tactics as a 'driftnet.' In prior email correspondence between the lawyers Ms. Schwartz's attorney had offered to withdraw the counterclaim if the RIAA's lawyer could show him legal authority that its assertion was impermissible, saying 'I wouldn't want to get into motion practice over a mere formality.' The RIAA lawyer's response was 'I will let you know.'"
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Does the RIAA Fear Counterclaims?

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  • Yes (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:00PM (#16907210)
    Most extortionists do.
    • by EmbeddedJanitor (597831) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:25PM (#16907468)
      If the RIAA just stuck with points of law, then they'd probably be doing OK. However, they lose it when they start trying to play the "starving artist" card. They get into trouble when they try pull on the jury's heartstrngs because that is quite easily countered for many defendants.

      My "single-mom with multiple sclerosis" beats your "starving artists".

      If they just stuck with a straightforward legal approach, they might fare better. ie. Just because you're a single mom with multiple sclerosis does not give you a right to steal music/software any more than it gives you a right to deal drugs.

      • Only thing, this lady never even heard of file sharing before the RIAA sued her for it.
        • by pimpimpim (811140) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:41PM (#16907604)
          well, but apparently her kids did, using her DSL connection. Aren't parents liable for the actions of their kids? Just being devil's advocate here.
          • No. Actually, they're not.
            • Can you rebut this? (Score:5, Informative)

              by way2trivial (601132) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @07:31PM (#16908006) Homepage Journal
              I'd often heard NY parents have liability over the action of their offspring, and you claim that is not the case, so I did a minimum of research and turned up the following example
              http://www.consumer.state.ny.us/clahm/clahm-childr en.htm#Parental%20Liability%20for%20a%20Child's%20 Actions [state.ny.us]
              Parents or legal guardians (other than foster parents) can be liable for up to $5,000 in damages for the willful and malicious damage, destruction, concealment, or theft of property (whether publicly or privately owned) by their child, if between 10 and 18 years old. This also includes the actual monetary damages suffered by a school or other public or private victim in responding to the false reporting of an "incident" or placing a "false bomb" by a minor. If damages awarded by the court exceed $500, the parent can ask to have damages limited to that amount they can actually afford to pay, up to $5000, but not less than $500, because of financial hardship.

              this would seem to indicate, parents CAN in fact be liable for child actions.. can you resolve please, this difference of opinion?

              • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

                by SpiralSpirit (874918)
                "can be liable for up to $5,000 in damages for the willful and malicious damage, destruction, concealment, or theft of property (whether publicly or privately owned) by their child, if between 10 and 18 years old."

                The lawsuit is not about willful and malicious damage, destruction, concealment, or theft of property. So I guess the law, which you so wonderfully quote, is quite against you.
              • by spiffyman (949476)
                theft of property (whether publicly or privately owned) by their child

                I guess this is supposed to be the relevant portion for you, and I applaud your having taken the time to look around. But the fact is that copyright infringement is generally a civil matter [wikipedia.org]. I think the code you quoted here does indicate a slant toward holding guardians responsible for children's deeds, so I wouldn't be surprised if at least some jurisdictions held them responsible.

                It'd be nice if certain people would educate and inform
                • by way2trivial (601132)
                  so if the kid steals a CD the parents can be forced to pay, but sharing a song means the parents are not liable?

                  I'm sure a great many individuals (including lawmaker types) consider both to be theft...

                  I'm trying but failing to visualize a situation where parents would be financially responsible for theft, and it's not a civil matter.

                  • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                    by bky1701 (979071)
                    What they "consider" isn't worth shit in law... or at least, it shouldn't be.

                    No matter how much people yell murder at someone stealing a car, it doesn't change the fact stealing a car != murder.

                    The only people who consider copyright infringement "theft" are ether the bias ones who say it is for the sake of emotional appeal or those who don't understand the concept of copyright in the first place. Though I will give you that many in the government tend to belong to both groups.
                • http://www.eccpasa.info/safehomes%20legal_consequ e nces.htm [eccpasa.info]

                  General Obligations Law 11-105

                  Parents or legal guardians of an unemancipated minor shall be civilly liable for said minor who commits larceny against the property of a mercantile establishment to the operator of such establishment in an amount consisting of:

                  a. the retail price of the merchandise if not recovered in merchantable condition up to an amount not to exceed $1,500.00; plus

                  b. a penalty not to exceed the greater of five times the retail pric
              • this would seem to indicate, parents CAN in fact be liable for child actions.. can you resolve please, this difference of opinion?

                Under no sane interpretation has a copyright violation ever been considered a "damage, destruction, concealment, or theft of property."

                Besides, state law doesn't matter here. We are dealing with Federal copyright law.
              • by MikeJ9919 (48520) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @10:33PM (#16909434) Homepage
                Something that hasn't been directly addressed by other comments...the law in question here is not state law, it's federal. Copyright infringement is part of copyright law, delegated to Congress by the Constitution, and by them restricted to trial in federal court. Therefore, only federal statute and common law on the liability of parents for their childrens' conduct matter. I don't know the case law on point, but the general common law rule is that parents are not liable for the actions of their children unless they permit them to do something beyond their ability (operate a bulldozer, for example) or fail to exercise control over a dangerous child. Neither situation applies here.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by terrymr (316118)
            Some statutes impose liability on parents for specific torts committed by their children, shoplifting comes to mind as an example in my Jurisdiction (washington state). These are pretty rare though and I've never heard of anybody trying to amend the copyright act to impose such liability.
        • So, it's OK to download music so long as you've never heard of the RIAA?
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by westlake (615356)
        My "single-mom with multiple sclerosis" beats your "starving artists".

        Not always: a jury verdict is a crap shoot, a risky and expensive roll of the dice.

        But first you have to get the case to trial. That is a months or years long ordeal for your severely disabled defendant.

        It will be a bitch if you lose.

    • Counterclaims are an occupational hazard, although certainly enough of those might alter their behavior.

      What they fear is obsolescence. Well, that and jail time. I think some of each is in store for these guys.
  • Duh (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TubeSteak (669689) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:01PM (#16907222) Journal
    The RIAA has always had the backup power to just drop a case that they think they're going to lose.

    If people start filing counter claims, then the RIAA has no chance of dropping the case without getting dinged for lawyers fees.

    • Re:Duh (Score:5, Informative)

      by NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) * <ray@beckermanleg ... m minus language> on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:09PM (#16907302) Homepage Journal
      But see Capitol v. Foster [riaalawsuits.us], where the judge held that the RIAA could not immunize itself from liability for attorneys fees by dropping the case, after first tying the woman up in frivolous litigation for a year and a half.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by TubeSteak (669689)
        1. Was that claim decided yet? The last filing for that case on info.riaalawsuits.us is 10/12/2006 and it is a Motion for Leave to File Reply

        2. Even if it was decided for Foster, her case is in Oklahoma (10th Circuit), whereas the Schwartz case is in NY (the 2nd circuit). Two completely different Federal circuits, which means that precendent in either circuit is not binding upon the other, even though both counterclaims are almost exactly the same.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by filenavigator (944290) *
      Exactly. I think they might not have expected this to happen. But many people are just getting so damn mad they don't mind spending more money than the fines to fight these bastards. If they had their way we would not even had seen the first MP3 player. If you can remember - they tried to stop the Diamond RIO from being sold. It was the first hardware MP3 player on the market (At least popular enough for the RIAA to notice). Just think if they won that case? Would we even see the I-Pod? Or would it have kep
      • by cptgrudge (177113)

        RIAA: "Hey, we're going to sue you. Unless you settle, of course."

        Person: "Really? Yeah, no. I am absolutely confident that you will get exactly zero evidence from my computers, should you seize them. You will lose, and I will file a countersuit."

        RIAA: "Uh..."

        Person: "I will stop working; I have friends that will help fund my crusade. Make no mistake, I will make it my personal mission for several years to bury you and continue setting some civil precedence, like others before me."

        Of course,

    • Re:Duh (Score:5, Insightful)

      by MikeJ9919 (48520) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:26PM (#16907472) Homepage
      I think this is exactly what's going on. The RIAA is worried that they'll get locked into mutual litigation. Once that happens, if defendants win, they start stacking up precedents, both binding and persuasive. More importantly, the media publishes every single story where the defendant not only got sued by the bloodthirsty RIAA, but "Look, they won, so they must've been right, and the RIAA must've been wrong!" Suddenly everyone starts asking how many of these lawsuits are actually valid.

      However, the original poster seems to be spinning this. Take whatever I say with a grain of salt because I'm only a first-year law student, but a 12(b)(6) objection is not merely technical. It's the most basic defense in federal Court to frivolous claims. If I give you a dirty look, for example, that's not nice, but it's not a crime or even an offense for which you can sue. I don't know the case law on point and (again) I'm only a first-year, but it doesn't look like this clause of the Copyright Act is something for which you can directly sue. It looks like exactly what the RIAA says it is...a cost-shifting provision the Court may impose as part of a final decision. If the defendant really thinks the RIAA is making a frivolous claim, they shouldn't be filing a counterclaim, they should be filing a Rule 11 motion, which allows the Court to punish frivolous claims.

      However, I can understand why they're reluctant to do this. Some commentaries believe Rule 11 has been eviscerated over the years. In its current form, it allows the party being accused under it to simply withdraw the claim, motion, etc. within a specified safe harbor period and face no repercussions. It's supposed to encourage more civilized litigation, open discourse between the parties, etc., but some think it's swung too far in the direction of letting people throw out whatever ridiculous thing they want. Again, my analysis of the whole thing may be way off, but I hope it's not (or my civ pro grades may not be as good as I hope they will be.) Hope it helps.
      • Re:Duh (Score:5, Informative)

        by NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) * <ray@beckermanleg ... m minus language> on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:40PM (#16907590) Homepage Journal
        If you read the record carefully you will see that we offered to withdraw the counterclaim [ilrweb.com] if the RIAA could show us legal authority for their position that the counterclaim was improper, specifically saying to them "I certainly wouldn't want to get into motion practice over a mere formality." They could find no such authority, and never even got back to us, but simply went ahead with their motion. That sounds like frivolous litigation to me.

        As to your comment that we should have made a Rule 11 motion, that can be done at any time in the case, and one that may not be necessary, since the Copyright Act gives Ms. Schwartz a right to attorneys fees, on a much lesser showing than would be needed under Rule 11. Rule 11 motions should never be undertaken lightly.

        If you're really a first year law student, please don't -- when you get out there -- practice law like these guys do.
  • by squiggleslash (241428) * on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:01PM (#16907226) Homepage Journal

    I'm still trying to work out the story here. The submission appears to be saying that the RIAA doesn't like being countersued. Which presumably means that most people who sue actually love being countersued, or at least don't mind. Or perhaps the submitter thinks that people generally aren't aware of the fact that those who sue don't like being countersued.

    Either way, this actually seems, well, blindingly obvious to me.

    Perhaps it's the submitter that's surprised (in which case why did the editor post it? I mean, if I submit "Would you believe it? I just found the way to compile a Java class is with "javac". Wow!", I'm pretty sure it wouldn't get posted.

    If the submitter really is a lawyer, rather than a shill for the RIAA who's trying to make all those in favour of meaningful copyright reform look like freeloader-apologists, then this story is yet another good reason why I wouldn't ever hire the guy.

    I've tagged this "FUD" (because it tries to sow uncertainty, fear, and doubt, by using negative language to make the usual look unusual), "troll" (because I'm more and more convinced that's what this guy is. How can you not read the submission and want to flame the hell out of it?), and "blindinglyobvious", because, well, it's that.

    • by Arker (91948)
      I think the point is that the RIAA seems to dislike counterclaims that most litigious bastards do. It's poorly supported in the submission, but is nonetheless likely true.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by linuxci (3530) *
      Yeah, it is pretty much stating the obvious. No one would want to be countersued, but I see it's positive that some people are starting to countersue them. I treat their actions as very immoral as they always seem to sue the weak (do they deliberately look for the weak to sue such as victims of multiple sclerosis or do these people just happen to be brought to our attention as its more newsworthy?) Also the more that articles about the RIAA/MPAA litigation happy actions get published the more the public wil
    • by TubeSteak (669689) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:17PM (#16907396) Journal
      I'm still trying to work out the story here. The submission appears to be saying that the RIAA doesn't like being countersued.
      The RIAA is trying to claim that the defendant has no legal basis upon which to assert a counterclaim for attorney's fees.

      The Defendant asserts that under 505 of the Copyright Act, "the court may . . . award a reasonable attorney's fee to the prevailing party as part of the costs." Which is actually a straight quote from the law.

      Page 14 of the PDF, Page 11 if you go by the internal #ing [ilrweb.com] is the section of the defense's legal brief which discusses the counterclaim issue.

      The brief quotes from a SCOTUS case called Fogerty v. Fantasy, Inc. [oyez.org]
      The Question: Do federal courts have discretion over whether or not to force a loosing party to pay all or part of the victorious party's attorney's fees?
      The (Short) Answer: Yes
    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:19PM (#16907402)
      I've tagged this "FUD"

      Well since you've started it, you might as well finish the job by including the 'notfud' 'yes' 'no' and 'maybe' tags.
    • by perlchild (582235)
      If I may play devil's advocate here...

      Maybe the RIAA's lawyer just gets a bonus from the legal damages if there are no counterclaims.
    • by lawpoop (604919)
      "The submission appears to be saying that the RIAA doesn't like being countersued."

      No, the submission specifically claims that the RIAA is afraid of countersuits ( albeit via a rhetorical question ). There is a difference between "not liking" and "being afraid of" something. The reason that the RIAA would be *afraid* rather than annoyed or in a state of dislike towards it is that countersuits could be a successful strategy against their racketeering and intimidation campaign.

      If you are sued by the RIAA,
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by bsane (148894)
        If you are sued by the RIAA, you must defend yourself (or the court will appoint a defense lawyer for you).

        I think you're horribly confused about the legal system...

        The courts could care less whether or not you have representation in a civil case, they also dont care if you defend yourself, they dont even care if you show up*.

        *Not in the way they care if you didn't show up to a criminal proceeding anyway.
        • by lawpoop (604919)
          I stand corrected. You don't have to defend yourself in a civil case.
        • yes, but if you mount enough of a defense to file counter claims, then that starts getting nasty for them. Like you said, in civil cases, courts don't always care about if you show up...what happens if they get sloppy on a busy day and just "assume" you'll show up, but instead YOU file counter claims that they miss... if it becomes common place, then it becomes very abusive to the RIAA lawyer time running around filing motions for all these counter claims.. miss one and it sets precedent!!!

          on the other h

    • The submission appears to be saying that the RIAA doesn't like being countersued.
      No, the submitter is saying that the RIAA fears countersuits. There is a huge difference between "fear" and "dislike" or "be annoyed by." For example, I dislike spinach, but I don't fear it. (cue Popeye jokes)
      • Exactly. Why are they going to such efforts to bury the counterclaim, since they are acknowledging that the same attorneys fee award can come about without a counterclaim? What are they afraid of?
  • heh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by stoolpigeon (454276) * <bittercode@gmail> on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:02PM (#16907230) Homepage Journal
    i eagerly await someone, lawyer or not, who is willing to explain this in plain english - i read a bunch of the links and i still don't understand it.
    • by pimpimpim (811140)
      Copy that! And what does the fact that defendant has multiple sclerosis to do with the case? Apparently, her daughter/sun did the filesharing on her internet account, which is not a complete unlikely thing.

      More shocking to me is this: [p2pnet.net]

      To boost their claims without actually having to prove anything, the RIAA is also using the mainstream media to publicly harrass and humiliate the Santangeo family via a 'court document' which, although it still hadn't been indexed at the time of writing, or seen by the San

    • Re:heh (Score:5, Informative)

      by GodInHell (258915) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:35PM (#16907550) Homepage
      It doesn't get alot more clear than the explanations above.

      Basically, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) has read the federal laws and the constitution as allowing judges wide discretion over whether or not the partys before the court can request that the other side pay all the costs incurred in pursing the suit.

      You want to sue me? I'm innocent!

      "Yeah, but you can't pay for your legal defense, so you'll lose and have to pay anyway"

      That's not fair, your Honor, if I win, will you make them pay for my fees?

      seems fair to me.

      "gulp"

      "Can we drop the suit?"

      Sure, but you have to pay the fees she's already incurred.

      "Uhm.. let me try to change your mind"

      it's your dime


      And that's where it is now


      -GiH

      • actually - that is more clear than what i read in any of the links. thanks!
      • Eh, it has a bit more to do with Congress having enacted 17 USC 505, which authorizes the court to award fees to the prevailing party.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:48PM (#16907660)
    What they are afraid of is the legal concept of "non-mutual collateral estoppel."

    Take for example, "Is the IP log showing the IP assigned to you by your ISP was involved in sharing enough for a copyright violation?" If the RIAA litigates this question, and wins, they win that case. They will have to litigate that issue against with the next defendant, and so on, because the next defendant may have different arguments.

    But if the RIAA loses, they can not get a second bite at the apple by tring the same argument on a different defendant. They have litigated that issue, and lost. They are "estopped" from relitigating that particular issue.

    This is common in the patent litigation, where just becuase you won 10 patent infringment suits, the 11th defendant can still beat you, but once ANYONE has beaten you, you lose from then on on that legal issue.

    If the RIAA ever loses, you can bet that 1) they will appeal, and 2) while the appeal is pending, they will pay the defndnat a bazillion bucks to "settle" with vacation order, which will nullify the decision. And if you think they won't or can't, the insurance industry has been using this exact tactic for decades.
    • by terrymr (316118)
      The insurance industy, a more vile den of scum and villainy ....
      • by pyite (140350)
        The insurance industy, a more vile den of scum and villainy ....

        How is the insurance industry vile? They are doing what many financial companies do, selling a derivative an underlying asset. In this case, an option on healthcare. They sell you a contract that they will give you healthcare at a fixed cost (your deductible) if some condition is satisfied (you get hurt). If we didn't have insurance, healthcare would be completely unaffordable when you need it most.

        • by terrymr (316118)
          I was making a joke.

          But anyway ... call your medical insurer and ask why they spend $6 on overhead for every $4 in medical bills they pay.
        • by Reziac (43301) *
          That may be, but insurance also drives up medical costs across the board, to the point that they become disastrous for the uninsured.

          Since insurance became widely available for pets, veterinary charges (which had been fairly stable for decades) have skyrocketed -- now 5 to 10 times higher than they were just five years ago (when pet insurance really took off). The main culprits are that now insurance can be counted on to pay for the big bills, which discourages cost-control, and of course insurance demands
  • by Tim Ward (514198) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:50PM (#16907674) Homepage
    ... reading the Times of India.

    You understand quite a lot of the individual words, but once they're put together into sentences you (or, more precisely I, as a native English speaker, YMMV of course) end up without the remotest clue what the overal paragraph means.
    • by jrockway (229604)
      > end up without the remotest clue what the overal paragraph means

      I don't think "overal" means what you think it means.
  • Relevance? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TravisW (594642) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:58PM (#16907734)

    I appreciate NewYorkCountryLawyer's insight into many of the legal issues discussed here, but the summary seems misdirected.

    The summary describes a "case against a woman with Multiple Sclerosis," and the lede of the P2PNet article is, "RaeJ Schwartz is a mother in Queen's [sic], New York, who's been seriously disabled by multiple sclerosis, a chronic, crippling disease of the central nervous system." Neither makes any further mention of her disease or disability, or any mention of how either affects the case, so we're left to guess: Is the implication that the RIAA is particularly unscrupulous for bringing a suit against someone with a severe medical condition, and that it should hence be additionally vilified accordingly? This leaves unanswered the basic question of why her disease should affect our analysis of the situation. My best guess: MS can severely limit mobility, so the implication is that her disease prevented her from downloading. (How likely is this? I'm ignorant of the practical specifics of the disease.) If this is the implication, it should have been included in the summary.

    Instead of name-dropping her disability and saying no more, the summary ought to have included something more relevant, like "a case against a woman who has a severe medical condition preventing her from conventional computer use" or "a case against a woman who likely never downloaded any music" (as was suggested in the P2PNet article, though this would deserve more explanation, too).

    • Re:Relevance? (Score:4, Informative)

      by NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) * <ray@beckermanleg ... m minus language> on Sunday November 19, 2006 @07:04PM (#16907782) Homepage Journal
      Sorry if I left out some details. I'm under a lot of time pressure. I don't make a living from writing blogs, posts, and comments. I have to spend at least some time doing legal work too.

      It's a case against a woman with Multiple Sclerosis who's never even heard of file sharing until the RIAA came after her. She just uses her computer to communicate with people by email. The RIAA knows this, but doesn't care.
      • by GodInHell (258915)
        Yes, well, that plus

        The fact that this woman is deserving of sympathy due to her disease makes the article more compelling to readers (and probably the author).

        The courts tend to protect those who for econonomic or physical reasons have difficulty protecting themselves.

        Consider the language the court tends to use when discussing adhesion contracts, and products liability issues, etc.


        -GiH

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Strolls (641018)

        Neither makes any further mention of her disease or disability, or any mention of how either affects the case, so we're left to guess: Is the implication that the RIAA is particularly unscrupulous for bringing a suit against someone with a severe medical condition, and that it should hence be additionally vilified accordingly? This leaves unanswered the basic question of why her disease should affect our analysis of the situation.

        It's a case against a woman with Multiple Sclerosis who's never even heard

        • Re:Relevance? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) * <ray@beckermanleg ... m minus language> on Sunday November 19, 2006 @09:57PM (#16909132) Homepage Journal
          If you don't think that compassion and decency have a place in the law, I feel sorry for you.

          I don't share that outlook. I wouldn't have gone into the legal profession I did. I came here to help make the world a better place, not a worse place.

          Ms. Schwartz is a very sick woman who didn't infringe anyone's copyrights. The RIAA's lawyers are aware of both of those facts. They should have dropped this case, but they and their lawyers are ghouls. In my view anyone who doesn't get that it's wrong to persecute helpless people this way isn't my kind of people.

          I suggest you read what Jordan Glass had to say about these lawsuits [p2pnet.net] in an excellent article on p2pnet.net [p2pnet.net].

          Sorry if you feel I "weaseled" out of answering the question. I think I did answer it.
          • by Reziac (43301) *
            So it's really all about instilling fear (doesn't matter who you scare, so long as lots of people hear about it and develop the same fear), and damned little to do with the lawsuits' nominal topic.

            The RIAA cartel can't force artists to sign contracts. But if consumers are afraid of digital distribution, it becomes useless to artists, thus reinforcing the RIAA distribution lock-in.

            Makes a person want to polish their tinfoil hat before examining market-shaping forces of any ilk, eh? :(
        • Going back to my original post, I think the reason I included the reference to her Multiple Sclerosis is to suggest that the RIAA may be especially nervous about her counterclaim... not nervous enough to do the right thing and drop the case, but nervous enough to try to make a preemptive strike at getting the counterclaim dismissed.
  • by ezratrumpet (937206) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @06:59PM (#16907736) Journal
    I may be waaay off base. Feel free to correct (like you needed permission).

    The whole point of copyright is money. Shouldn't anyone suing over a copyright issue have to show that their client suffered financial loss right up front before anything else?

    Just my thoughts.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by westlake (615356)
      The whole point of copyright is money. Shouldn't anyone suing over a copyright issue have to show that their client suffered financial loss right up front before anything else?

      The constitution grants the copyright holder exclusive control over distribution. It is within his right to demand that the infringement end, whether he has suffered financial loss or not.

      Unless you can produce a license to distribute content on the P2P nets that sells for $1 a track on iTunes it fair for a judge or jury to conclu

    • The whole point of copyright is money. Shouldn't anyone suing over a copyright issue have to show that their client suffered financial loss right up front before anything else?

      Money is not the only reason that someone would want their work protected by copyright. Every piece of GPL'ed code that is out there is protected by copyright, but not for the purpose of making its holder any money. The purpose of the licence is to keep the code Free. You won't find Stallman claiming that the point of copyright is

  • The RIAA..... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 8127972 (73495) on Sunday November 19, 2006 @07:03PM (#16907770)
    .... Fears anything that will stop their monopolization of the music industry.

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