Friday, October 5, 2007

Verdict in First RIAA File-Sharing Jury Trial: Guilty

The first defendant to face a jury trial in the Recording Industry Association of America's (RIAA) over 20,000-lawsuit strong campaign against illegal file-sharing was found guilty on Thursday, and ordered to pay $220,000 in damages. Thirty-year-old Jammie Thomas was found guilty of "willful" copyright infringement, and will pay $9,250 in damages for each of the 24 songs in question, or a total of $220,000, Ars Technica reported.

The copyright infringement lawsuit against Thomas was the first to ever actually go to a jury trial; most of those charged have opted to settle the claims for around $3,000 to $5,000 each. Thomas testified that she was not the Kazaa user "tereastarr," despite using the same handle on e-mail, website logins and at Thomas' attorney Brian Toder said during his closing argument that the industry had failed to establish that "this actual human being was behind the keyboard," and that Thomas was "not the person marauding as 'tereastarr'," Wired News reported in its courtroom coverage. Article

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