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RIAA Filed 62 New Cases In April Alone 243

Posted by kdawson
from the what-part-of-stop-do-you-not-understand dept.
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Based upon a quick examination of the records in PACER, I detected 62 new cases brought by the RIAA against individuals in the month of April alone. In December, 2008, the RIAA had represented to Congress that they had 'discontinued initiating new lawsuits in August [2008].'"
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RIAA Filed 62 New Cases In April Alone

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  • Surprising (Score:5, Funny)

    by count rostov (1128123) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @04:53PM (#27899421)
    The RIAA, lying? Who saw that one coming?
    • by ravenspear (756059) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @04:59PM (#27899455)
      Bainwol: Lying? Baseless. We merely "made available" to Congress our statement that we would stop. You have no proof that we actually had intention to do so.
  • Perhaps... (Score:5, Funny)

    by rakslice (90330) <rakslice AT gmx DOT net> on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:00PM (#27899457) Homepage Journal

    ... they discontinued initiating lawsuits on August 31st and started right up again on September 1st. Everyone needs a few hours off now and then. =)

  • by hyades1 (1149581) <hyades1@hotmail.com> on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:06PM (#27899499)

    So you're saying the RIAA lied? Is that possible? I thought they always told the truth, and only wanted to protect society from the evils of piracy. I believe they said something to that effect under oath, in court, didn't they?

    Oh, god, please let some of those whiny thugs get caught perjuring themselves. They'd make such lovely prison bitches.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:07PM (#27899507)

    While they were in front of Congress, they had stopped filing lawsuits... because their mobile broadband connection wasn't working. As soon as they returned to the office, they started again.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by CarpetShark (865376)

      Nope. Believe it or not, they were telling the truth, and it still applies. This is possible due to a little-known law enacted in the summer of 1837, which states that lawsuits are not really considered to be lawsuits, if they're brought against defenseless pensioners who have no idea what the charge means, much less how to defend themselves against it.

  • Perjury (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Doug52392 (1094585) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:08PM (#27899517)

    Perjury - n. the crime of intentionally lying after being duly sworn (to tell the truth) by a notary public, court clerk or other official. This false statement may be made in testimony in court, administrative hearings, depositions, answers to interrogatories, as well as by signing or acknowledging a written legal document (such as affidavit, declaration under penalty of perjury, deed, license application, tax return) known to contain false information. Although a crime, prosecutions for perjury are rare, because a defendant will argue he/she merely made a mistake or misunderstood.

    So sue the RIAA for perjury (actually, that would be a criminal matter).

  • Lying to Congress (Score:4, Insightful)

    by arizwebfoot (1228544) * on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:10PM (#27899527)
    Lying to congress is just the new sport - remember when the tobacco companies said smoking was "good" for your health and that they swore to congress that they've never put anything into the tobacco that would cause people to become addicted?

    Lying to congress - Congress can't handle the truth.
  • No *new* lawsuits (Score:4, Informative)

    by d_jedi (773213) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:10PM (#27899529)

    Which means - and to my understanding, the RIAA was actually quite clear on this - they will still file lawsuits related to cases already in progress, but will not begin any new cases against new individuals.

    And even still.. I believe the RIAA said they reserve the right to begin filing lawsuits again in the future.

    Either way.. so long as the lawsuits they file are legitimate (ie. the person being sued actually broke the law) I, personally, have no problem with it..

    • by plasmacutter (901737) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:17PM (#27899579)

      Either way.. so long as the lawsuits they file are legitimate (ie. the person being sued actually broke the law) I, personally, have no problem with it..

      Because the laws they bought are "legitimate"?

      I hereby propose a law stating D_Jedi may never own a car, see his mother, or use the internet again.

      Lawsuits against you will follow.

      • by artor3 (1344997) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:29PM (#27899667)

        I don't think you understand how laws work. Using the word "hereby" doesn't actually make something a law.

        For that, you need to donate to a few congressmen.

      • by d_jedi (773213)

        *Some* of the laws they have bought (retroactive copyright extension is the one that immediately pops into mind) are objectionable and illegitimate (IMO).. but wholesale copying of copyright protected (taking into account my above distaste for retroactive copyright extension) songs? Yeah, that should be illegal, and those who choose to do it should be punished appropriately ($250K / song is disproportionate for noncommercial copying.. but $750.. I think that's reasonable).

    • And all the lawsuits are related because you never know who might have, at some point, sent a few bytes to someone they've already sued with a p2p program.

    • With the shoddy "evidence" being allowed in most of these cases, how in the world are we to ever determine whether these lawsuits are legitimate?

      Thus, I have a problem with it. I could care less if they started a new lawsuit every 10 seconds; as long as they had real evidence, legally obtained, followed proper legal methods for filing and continuing suit, and (the evidence was) legally used to fight their cases.

      But of course, none of that is true.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    There are good independent bands in every major city. Seek them out and support them. And pass the word, make it undesirable for bands to sign on to any RIAA label.

  • ...as a terrorist organisation? Membership punishable by vacation in Gitmo. Time to accuse them of possession of weapons of mass (ISP) destruction. Think about it. They're organised. They use sophisticated methods. They've proven they operate using terror tactics. They target grandmothers and children.

    Or perhaps just charge RIAA officials with good old fashioned treason against the U.S.

    Same with MPAA.

    Come on, turn some of that new draconian legislation back on them.

  • by KwKSilver (857599) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:28PM (#27899653)
    The RIAA is exposed (again) as lying sacks of pig-shit. By next week the Congress will have been exposed (again) as gutless wimps/corporate whores.
    • by PopeRatzo (965947) *

      The RIAA is exposed (again) as lying sacks of pig-shit. By next week the Congress will have been exposed (again) as gutless wimps/corporate whores.

      Now how can this be modded "Troll"?

      • by N3Roaster (888781)

        The RIAA is exposed (again) as lying sacks of pig-shit. By next week the Congress will have been exposed (again) as gutless wimps/corporate whores.

        Now how can this be modded "Troll"?

        Congressional staffers with mod points?

  • How is that lying? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by pclminion (145572) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:31PM (#27899685)
    The RIAA might be a crew of pirates themselves, but it's not lying. I discountinued sleeping at approximately 8:00 AM this morning. That doesn't mean I won't be sleeping again later...
  • by Anita Coney (648748) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @05:45PM (#27899771) Homepage

    The sentence "we discontinued initiating new lawsuits in August" really does not mean anything.

    First, it doesn't say that the RIAA "stopped" doing anything. To "discontinue" does not mean to "stop," it means "to break the continuity of."

    Second, anything it does say about the RIAA is limited to only the month of August. For example, if I say "Best Buy stopped having 10% off sales in August." That in no way means that Best Buy stopped having 10% off sales forever. It only means they stopped for a period, i.e., broke the continuity, for a single period of time, during the month of August.

    Third, more ambiguity is added by the word "initiate." The use of "initiate" gives the RIAA a lot of wiggle room to start new lawsuits. If anyone complains, the RIAA can merely say, "this lawsuit was actually initiated sometime ago when we first started investigating it." And of course it gives the RIAA complete freedom to "initialize" new lawsuits after August.

    What I don't understand is why the RIAA is conducting these lawsuits in a quasi-stealth mode. I thought the purpose of the lawsuits was to raise public awareness. But when they're "initialized" in secret, that defeats the entire educational purpose. So what really is going on with these reinitialized lawsuits?

    • by erroneus (253617)

      "That depends on what the definition of 'IS' is..."

      A pissed off legislator isn't going to care about "precise meanings."

    • What I don't understand is why the RIAA is conducting these lawsuits in a quasi-stealth mode.

      I'm guessing it's because they promised some politicians they would stop, but they can't get over their addiction to picking on defenseless people.

      • But where, Ray, did they promise they would stop such things in perpetuity? As far as I've read, they made a statement to Congress that they had "discontinued lawsuits in August 2008". Nowhere did they make a promise not to resume lawsuits, nor were they asked to. I'm no fan of the RIAA, but you're a lawyer. They're lawyers. Heck, most of the members of Congress they made that statement to are lawyers. If anyone should be on top of the issue of precision in use of language, it should be lawyers. That being
        • by PopeRatzo (965947) *

          ..people committing torts..

          I thought we were talking about people downloading music.

        • The story isn't about them continuing to bring lawsuits. That would be like the Saturday Night Live bit with Chevy Chase where he would announce that Francisco Franco is "still dead".

          The story is about them lying to Congress.

          They represented to the House and Senate Judiciary Committees that they had "discontinued initiating new lawsuits in August". That was a flat out, bald faced, lie.
    • by khallow (566160) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:24PM (#27900005)

      What I don't understand is why the RIAA is conducting these lawsuits in a quasi-stealth mode. I thought the purpose of the lawsuits was to raise public awareness. But when they're "initialized" in secret, that defeats the entire educational purpose. So what really is going on with these reinitialized lawsuits?

      I'd guess that they're hiding the lawsuit until they're sure it'll fall in their favor. You know, advertise the lawsuits that go the RIAA's way and which actually show considerable wrongdoing on the part of an unsympathetic defendant and don't emphasize the lawsuits against tech ignorant grannies.

    • by PopeRatzo (965947) *

      To "discontinue" does not mean to "stop,"

      Really?

      • Technically, stopping an action implies permanence. If you're stopping beating on someone, you probably aren't going to start up again unless the situation changes.

        If you discontinue, you're halting. Halting is a temporary action with a contingency allowing for a permanent stoppage.

        The issue arises from the sloppy manner in which the majority of English speakers use vocabulary. There are many nuances and degrees in the language, but people either don't know or don't care about more precise meanings, and in

    • by Swanktastic (109747) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @09:05PM (#27901043)

      First, it doesn't say that the RIAA "stopped" doing anything. To "discontinue" does not mean to "stop," it means "to break the continuity of."

      Quickly! We need to repaint all the octagonal red signs in this country to say "DISCONTINUE MOTION."

      Otherwise I predict severe, permanent traffic problems.

    • by Darundal (891860)
      What I think is going on with the new lawsuits is the same thing that I think was going on with the old lawsuits: extortion.
  • Everyone does it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Demonantis (1340557) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:29PM (#27900059)
    There is not really any severe penalty to lie in front of congress. The RIAA aren't required to do anything they say to congress. Tonnes of businesses have done it. And Presidents
  • by xigxag (167441) on Sunday May 10, 2009 @06:39PM (#27900149)

    Poor innocent RIAA-tan [blogspot.com] will never catch all the piracy scofflaws using this time-consuming serial approach. Hasn't she ever heard of multi-level marketing? Or the classic wheat and chessboard problem [wikipedia.org]? It's simple.

    They need to sue the bejeesus out of someone, and offer to settle by forcing the person to buy the rights to a minor song, and then requiring that that person protect their rights by suing two other people. And those two other people will have to settle by each suing two other people, and so on, and so on.

    Eventually everyone will wind up being sued, but at least having nice smelling hair [youtube.com].

  • Is Bainwol a lawyer? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by NewYorkCountryLawyer (912032) * <rayNO@SPAMbeckermanlegal.com> on Sunday May 10, 2009 @08:22PM (#27900723) Homepage Journal
    Is Bainwol -- the guy who lied to Congress -- a lawyer? This brief biographical sketch [mixonline.com] shows him to be a Republican party operative, but doesn't mention any work as a lawyer.

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