RIAA Asks Famed Pirate To Join Anti-Piracy Campaign

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RIAA Asks Famed Pirate To Join Anti-Piracy Campaign

Recording Industry Association of America logo

The Recording Industry Association of America has offered to reduce Jammie Thomas-Rasset's $222,000 fine if she takes part in an anti-piracy campaign, but she says she won't do it.

Jammie Thomas-Rasset is likely the most famous music downloader in America. In a case that's dragged on since 2007, she has fought and lost against the RIAA, and after the Supreme Court declined to hear the case found herself stuck with a fine of $222,000 for sharing 24 songs on Kazaa.

It's so wildly out of line that even the RIAA, an organization not known for shame, seems embarrassed by it and has been trying to get her to accept a settlement rather than pursue the full judgment against her. To that end, it now says that it's willing to accept a reduced financial penalty in exchange for her participation in an anti-piracy campaign.

"We continue to try to resolve this case in a reasonable way. In the past, for example, we have reached out to Ms. Thomas to settle the case in exchange for a contribution to a local music charity," RIAA spokesman Jonathan Lamy said. "We have communicated to Ms. Thomas that we would consider a variety of non-monetary settlement options, which is up to her to offer. We think this is a gesture of a good will and we're doing what we can to resolve this case in a manner that works for everyone."

Thomas-Rasset's lawyer, Michael Wilson, said the RIAA has offered her the opportunity to pay a reduced fine in exchange for making a public statement on the matter, although it hadn't been specific about what it had in mind. "It was kind of a general idea, nothing concrete," Wilson said. "I would assume it would be something along those lines: anti-piracy and culpability."

Regardless of the terms of the deal, Thomas-Rasset isn't interested in playing nice. "I'm not doing it," she said; her lawyer is instead looking into the possibility of filing for bankruptcy protection in order to avoid paying the fine.

Source: Wired

Permalink

I think we should get people together to raise the money to pay this fine.
But not pay it in a check or wired deposit. No.

Pay it in truckloads of coins. Pennies. Nickles. Dimes. Massive amounts of coins. Just dump it on their front-lawn.
Stinkin' RIAA.

Baby Tea:
I think we should get people together to raise the money to pay this fine.
But not pay it in a check or wired deposit. No.

Pay it in truckloads of coins. Pennies. Nickles. Dimes. Massive amounts of coins. Just dump it on their front-lawn.
Stinkin' RIAA.

Interesting idea

Kickstarter or IndieGoGo?

Baby Tea:
I think we should get people together to raise the money to pay this fine.
But not pay it in a check or wired deposit. No.

Pay it in truckloads of coins. Pennies. Nickles. Dimes. Massive amounts of coins. Just dump it on their front-lawn.
Stinkin' RIAA.

I approve of this idea.

Even better, put a small box on the top of the mega-pile with two rolls of pennies in it, labelled "this is how much the song cost".

Granted $222,000 is a stupid amount of money to fine someone over 24 songs that may or may not have been downloaded thousands of times, we all know it was a scare tactic to dissuade anyone else from pirating music (Which didn't work) But she's still a pirate, her trying to weasel out of any type of repayment shouldn't be supported.

Psh. Put each coin inside a fold of duct tape, then leave a message saying "This is how you treat us when we legitimately buy something!" The sit and watch as they get frustrated having to open each little duct tape pack only to find a penny or nickel in there. Maybe they'll change their tune once they realize you can't "maximize profits" when you limit, confuse and frustrate your consumers, and violate their rights.

She really ought take the deal. If her attorney is in any way competent he could probably argue away any and all financial responsibility in exchange for x number of hours of doing PSAs against piracy.

Now that being said the RIAA screwed her properly and I have no doubt they are doing this in a thinly veiled attempt to save face. That really doesn't change the fact that they are offering her an easy way out of a quarter million dollar judgement without ruining her financially for an extended period of time.

Come shill for us or we will continue to ruin your life. I love just how much power corporations have in the modern world.

Baby Tea:
I think we should get people together to raise the money to pay this fine.
But not pay it in a check or wired deposit. No.

Pay it in truckloads of coins. Pennies. Nickles. Dimes. Massive amounts of coins. Just dump it on their front-lawn.
Stinkin' RIAA.

Where do I sign up to contribute to this asshattery?

I think a quote by the wonderful Gaben is valid here:

The RIAA needs to realise this. Draconian scare tactics are not going to lower piracy. Better service will always prevail.

If that reduced fine is anymore than $24 USD, it's a goddamn ripoff.

They're currently asking about $10k per song - my iPod, with over 5,000 legitimately purchased songs, would be worth over $50 million, or about 200 times what my house is worth, or 2,000 times what my car is worth, or what I would earn at minimum wage and 40 hours a week for three millenia.

They claim that from 2004 to 2009 over 30 billion songs were illegally downloaded, or about 300 trillion dollars worth of music.

They claim that $10-12 billion are lost every year in the US economy to music piracy, meaning every man, woman, and child in the United States steals about $40 worth of music every year.

I realize I'm being overly simplistic here, but the numbers are obviously ridiculous. Studies have shown that people spend the same amount on entertainment regardless of their downloading habits, and so the RIAA's revenues aren't going to magically skyrocket the moment online piracy is eliminated. Following that, any financial problems the RIAA is facing, and they claim they cannot survive on the billions of dollars they earn every year, is entirely their own fault and not the fault of people like Thomas-Rasset who somehow cause hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage by uploading two dozen songs.

Hmm, Massive amount of money, or selling out everything you stand for?

You guys want check or cash?

Baby Tea:
I think we should get people together to raise the money to pay this fine.
But not pay it in a check or wired deposit. No.

Pay it in truckloads of coins. Pennies. Nickles. Dimes. Massive amounts of coins. Just dump it on their front-lawn.
Stinkin' RIAA.

It's not like she'll go to jail or be homeless. Bankruptcy is exactly for cases like this one. I know it her sentence isn't unjust, but her situation isn't as hard as some unfortunate people like that LoL player who went to jail for five months for a "terror threat" on Facebook.

synobal:
Come shill for us or we will continue to ruin your life. I love just how much power corporations have in the modern world.

You all laughed at the dystopian corportocracy in Syndicate. You said it can never happen.

You're wrong. YOU ARE ALL WRONG!

Corven:
But she's still a pirate, her trying to weasel out of any type of repayment shouldn't be supported.

The only reason I disagree is because the ruling levied against her is criminal. Based on the nature of the crime (which is how the legal system supposedly used to work), the fine is grossly disproportionate to any logically arguable loses sustained by the RIAA.

If you ask me, for the fine to cost any more than a parking ticket says volumes about this case & civil courts in general

For fuck sake, lady take the deal. This way you don't have to pay the fine.

Corven:
Granted $222,000 is a stupid amount of money to fine someone over 24 songs that may or may not have been downloaded thousands of times, we all know it was a scare tactic to dissuade anyone else from pirating music (Which didn't work) But she's still a pirate, her trying to weasel out of any type of repayment shouldn't be supported.

I disagree. When huge organizations/companies/whathaveyou like the RIAA can get away with horseshit like that, and then have the gall to ask her to join up with them, something is freakin wrong. I hope that she never pays the money, just for the principle of the thing.

kiri2tsubasa:
For fuck sake, lady take the deal. This way you don't have to pay the fine.

Some things are more important than money. Standing up against a stilted system is one of them. The RIAA is trying to bully this woman, the amount they have demanded is absurd, and they are just one of the organizations doing that. Go Ms. Thomas.

Doom972:

Baby Tea:
I think we should get people together to raise the money to pay this fine.
But not pay it in a check or wired deposit. No.

Pay it in truckloads of coins. Pennies. Nickles. Dimes. Massive amounts of coins. Just dump it on their front-lawn.
Stinkin' RIAA.

It's not like she'll go to jail or be homeless. Bankruptcy is exactly for cases like this one. I know it her sentence isn't unjust, but her situation isn't as hard as some unfortunate people like that LoL player who went to jail for five months for a "terror threat" on Facebook.

Interesting. I guess that explains why she couldn't give less of fuck about paying the fine or any non-monetary payment options. I think I would have done the same thing. Fuck the RIAA, I wouldn't do an anti-piracy thing for them if they paid me

It'd be EASIER and more fair to simply get a court order that forces the person to simply pay the amount that they "Stole" in content (So like $1 for each song or whatever the price was at the time). Plus it wouldn't make the RIAA look like the stupid fucking morons that they are, and instead make them appear like a legitimate and sensible group.

Chances are the deal they offered her was something like 20% off. No use accepting terms (I bet never being allowed to speak out against them was one part of it) like those when in the end you still won't be able to ever pay that absurd punishment.

Leaving it stand as a symbol of corporate power abuse is more useful when you're fucked either way.

Got to love legal blackmail, do our add or pay the entirety of the fine and more than likely go bankrupt.

Wonderfull.

I don't know why this is being portrayed as something even the RIAA finds ridiculous. Not only have they done dozens of these suits, they've gone after dead people and people without internet. While it may seem ridicuous, I wouldn't be surprised to find out the RIAA had tried to sue an Amish family at some point.

Since the Napster days, they have not only sued for ridiculous amounts, but chased down people for recordings their members don't own, including C&D letters and DMCA claims. Their solution to illegitimate uses of file sharing is to illegitimately go after people who haven't done anything wrong.

They are clowns. They should be mandated to show up in court with floppy shoes and rubber noses that squeak.

Now, I'm not saying you should pirate (you shouldn't). I'm just saying that suing for thousands of dollars over a couple dozen songs is probably the LEAST ridiculous thing they do.

And if you've ever been harassed by them for sharing a song you wrote, arranged, recorded, mixed and finalised all on your lonesome, you know what I mean.

Doom972:

It's not like she'll go to jail or be homeless. Bankruptcy is exactly for cases like this one. I know it her sentence isn't unjust, but her situation isn't as hard as some unfortunate people like that LoL player who went to jail for five months for a "terror threat" on Facebook.

Bankruptcy isn't a "get out of jail free" card and may open her up to further issues. Bankruptcy stopped being so laid back in the 90s. Unless you're a corporation, because we like corporations.

PoolCleaningRobot:

Doom972:

Baby Tea:
I think we should get people together to raise the money to pay this fine.
But not pay it in a check or wired deposit. No.

Pay it in truckloads of coins. Pennies. Nickles. Dimes. Massive amounts of coins. Just dump it on their front-lawn.
Stinkin' RIAA.

It's not like she'll go to jail or be homeless. Bankruptcy is exactly for cases like this one. I know it her sentence isn't unjust, but her situation isn't as hard as some unfortunate people like that LoL player who went to jail for five months for a "terror threat" on Facebook.

Interesting. I guess that explains why she couldn't give less of fuck about paying the fine or any non-monetary payment options. I think I would have done the same thing. Fuck the RIAA, I wouldn't do an anti-piracy thing for them if they paid me

My thoughts exactly. They're just bullies and she shouldn't make any effort to appease them when there's a way for her to handle this and continue with her life. They didn't even offer to dismiss the debt, but to "Reduce" it, as if they actually need this money. Pricks.

Zachary Amaranth:

Doom972:

It's not like she'll go to jail or be homeless. Bankruptcy is exactly for cases like this one. I know it her sentence isn't unjust, but her situation isn't as hard as some unfortunate people like that LoL player who went to jail for five months for a "terror threat" on Facebook.

Bankruptcy isn't a "get out of jail free" card and may open her up to further issues. Bankruptcy stopped being so laid back in the 90s. Unless you're a corporation, because we like corporations.

I admit that I'm not familiar with bankruptcy in the US as I am in my own country, but I'm aware of the difficulties involved, including the long-term problems, and had no intention of making it seem like a "get out of jail free" card. I just meant to say that she's not helpless in this situation.

Doom972:

PoolCleaningRobot:

Doom972:

It's not like she'll go to jail or be homeless. Bankruptcy is exactly for cases like this one. I know it her sentence isn't unjust, but her situation isn't as hard as some unfortunate people like that LoL player who went to jail for five months for a "terror threat" on Facebook.

Interesting. I guess that explains why she couldn't give less of fuck about paying the fine or any non-monetary payment options. I think I would have done the same thing. Fuck the RIAA, I wouldn't do an anti-piracy thing for them if they paid me

My thoughts exactly. They're just bullies and she shouldn't make any effort to appease them when there's a way for her to handle this and continue with her life. They didn't even offer to dismiss the debt, but to "Reduce" it, as if they actually need this money. Pricks.

Zachary Amaranth:

Doom972:

It's not like she'll go to jail or be homeless. Bankruptcy is exactly for cases like this one. I know it her sentence isn't unjust, but her situation isn't as hard as some unfortunate people like that LoL player who went to jail for five months for a "terror threat" on Facebook.

Bankruptcy isn't a "get out of jail free" card and may open her up to further issues. Bankruptcy stopped being so laid back in the 90s. Unless you're a corporation, because we like corporations.

I admit that I'm not familiar with bankruptcy in the US as I am in my own country, but I'm aware of the difficulties involved, including the long-term problems, and had no intention of making it seem like a "get out of jail free" card. I just meant to say that she's not helpless in this situation.

Fuck it lets start an indegogo just to get her paid and get a counter suit paid for to attack them for blackmailing her. It is the USA, does not have to be a real threat just the thought of one and off we go. Hell she could even say it was because she is a woman they attacked her. She would probably come out ahead, knowing my country and our fucked up legal system...

I'm torn on this one.

On one hand, I want her to make the statement and save money, mainly because the statement will do fuck-all anyways.

On the other hand, I hate the RIAA with a passion and want them to be screwed over even in this minor instance.

So it seems like pulling dick moves and either backpedaling on them or offering something as an 'act of good faith' is becoming a fad among corporations.

Dr.Awkward:
Psh. Put each coin inside a fold of duct tape, then leave a message saying "This is how you treat us when we legitimately buy something!" The sit and watch as they get frustrated having to open each little duct tape pack only to find a penny or nickel in there. Maybe they'll change their tune once they realize you can't "maximize profits" when you limit, confuse and frustrate your consumers, and violate their rights.

And each fold of duct tape has to be returned with an RIAA representative's signature or the whole lot gets confiscated back.

Zachary Amaranth:

And if you've ever been harassed by them for sharing a song you wrote, arranged, recorded, mixed and finalized all on your lonesome, you know what I mean.

I'm guessing ridiculousness like this has happened to you?

Micalas:

I'm guessing ridiculousness like this has happened to you?

Yup. Had a threatening letter or two back shortly after the shutdown of Napster. My band used P2P to share material with one another and friends. We weren't worried about piracy in part because they were demos and in part because we weren't doing anything professionally at the time, so there was no money to take. Which sort of puzzles me as to how they came across us, but considering they lay claim to THOUSANDS of acts they (the companies they represent) had no rights to during the Napster fiasco, I imagine they intentionally cast their nets wide. And I would be super surprised if I was the only one who was threatened in similar circumstances.

...I'd also be surprised if anyone DID want to pirate us, as the stuff we did was very rough and of debatable quality. But that's another story. I'm really glad this was pre-three strikes policies, because my internet options are really limited and they could have basically shut me down.

Edit: We used P2P servers because it was easier than a lot of the alternatives, too. I still defend this as a valid use of peer-to-peer sharing clients. Granted, these days I could probably e-mail an MP3 if I wanted to. I just haven't had much need.

Infernal Lawyer:
So it seems like pulling dick moves and either backpedaling on them or offering something as an 'act of good faith' is becoming a fad among corporations.

Dr.Awkward:
Psh. Put each coin inside a fold of duct tape, then leave a message saying "This is how you treat us when we legitimately buy something!" The sit and watch as they get frustrated having to open each little duct tape pack only to find a penny or nickel in there. Maybe they'll change their tune once they realize you can't "maximize profits" when you limit, confuse and frustrate your consumers, and violate their rights.

And each fold of duct tape has to be returned with an RIAA representative's signature or the whole lot gets confiscated back.

In fact, print one of those contracts on there that by opening, you agree to terms on which the money can be used.

Blackmail and bribery? Nice one RIAA.

I'm glad she shoved it up their ass. Hopefully we'll get an anonymous doner like for the LoL player.

I'm a bit late to the party, but I am surprised this isn't posted yet.

image

Well, at least they're being open about their attempted blackmail this time.
Still, just another day for the ruthless RIAA.

As for why Thomas didn't take the deal: I guess the real value in saying 'no' is not being made a further example of.

Zachary Amaranth:

Now, I'm not saying you should pirate (you shouldn't). I'm just saying that suing for thousands of dollars over a couple dozen songs is probably the LEAST ridiculous thing they do.

What's the penalty to retail value ratio again? Something like 400: 1?

Twenty-four songs? Wow, really going after the big fish aren't they? Absolutely ridiculous.

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