Jammie Thomas is hard to rattle.
She doesn't raise her voice or get angry when a reporter asks her to read a story where she is called a "liar" by a member of the jury that found her guilty of copyright violations and ordered her to pay the recording industry $220,000 in damages.
She calmly reads the quotes by juror Michael Hegg that appeared Tuesday in a story by Wired.com. She then draws a bead on where Hegg said he is a father, former snowmobile racer and has never been on the Internet.
"I … Read more
Peer-to-peer company BitTorrent is set to announce on Tuesday morning the availability of a new enterprise content delivery product, BitTorrent DNA. Designed for companies that use streaming video, large downloads or games over the Web, the launch of BitTorrent DNA marks yet another conscious move by the San Francisco-based software brand to move beyond its roots as the creator of file-sharing protocol that became nearly synonymous with digital piracy over the past few years.
BitTorrent described the new BitTorrent DNA product in a statement as "the ideal solution for publishers seeking ways to overcome the obstacles associated with centralized … Read more
The recording industry's victory Thursday in a trial involving a Minnesota woman accused of illegal file-sharing is already turning at least a few heads on Capitol Hill.
We caught up by phone on Friday afternoon with Rep. Rick Boucher, a Virginia Democrat well known for his strongly held views on fair use and the need to defang stringent anti-copying laws like the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. (He's one of the Recording Industry Association of America's most ardent foes on copyright legislation.)
We wanted to know Boucher's answer to the obvious question: Will Congress lessen penalties for … Read more
UPDATE at 8:46 p.m. PDT: A Minnesota woman must pay $220,000 to six of the top music labels after a federal jury found on Thursday that she violated their copyright.
Accused of encouraging the illegal sharing of more than 1,700 songs, Jammie Thomas, 30, elected to fight it out with the recording industry instead of settling out of court for far less money. The ensuing legal battle marked the first time the recording industry has argued a file-sharing case before a jury.
Since 2003, many of the 26,000 persons sued by the Recording Industry Assoc. of America (RIAA) have avoided litigation by agreeing to pay a few thousand dollars. Thomas, who could not be reached for comment, has always maintained her innocence. Accused of sharing music through the use of peer-to-peer service, Kazaa, she told the jury that she didn't even own a Kazaa account.
The jury didn't buy her argument. Thomas was ordered to pay $9,250 for each of the 24 songs that the RIAA concentrated on. She was initially accused of sharing 1,702 songs. The decision is important in that it sends a message to file sharers that Internet anonymity won't protect them from lawsuits, said Chris Castle, a copyright attorney and longtime music industry executive.
Castle said the Web makes it simple to hide. Proving who was sitting at a computer at any given time is very difficult for copyright owners. What is precedent-setting about this case is that the jury decided it doesn't matter who was sharing music on Thomas' computer.
Jeff Zucker, the outspoken chief of NBC Universal and Philippe Dauman, Viacom's CEO, are scheduled to speak out against piracy and counterfeiting next week in Washington D.C.
Starting Tuesday, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is holding its annual two-day summit on piracy and among the subjects expected to be discussed is the government's plan to defend intellectual property overseas, according to a statement.
Media companies have for a long time lobbied Washington to do more to combat online file sharing and other copyright violations. Most experts agree that despite the government's efforts thus far, piracy … Read more
In the turbulent, choppy waters where P2P networks and copyright law chomp at each other's fins for dominance, there's at least one beast that thinks it has a solution to keep everybody happy. Its name: Grooveshark. The tagline? "Everybody gets paid."
As content distribution has mutated from analog to digital, the companies that came into existence to control the distribution have panicked and floundered. Decentralized peer-to-peer sharing made this all possible, but it's also thrown nearly a century of copyright law beyond the deep end and into rough waters.
I use TechSmith's Snagit screen-capturing tool (review) on a daily basis to gather all sorts of shots for posts and archival purposes. It works great at getting those pixel-precise sizes you might be going for, along with taking a step or two out Windows' less-than-stellar built-in print screen function. Today I've been playing with a small download called Clip2Net. It's a free and simple screenshot program with built-in Web uploading for screenshots AND image files. It's not at all as advanced as Snagit, but if you're in the market for a relatively easy way to take and host screenshots, or share a roll of pictures with friends, Clip2Net is a promising hybrid solution.
Setup is simple: Just download and install the less-than-1MB file and you're good to go. You can start capturing right away, either in regions or the entire screen at a time. Registering and plugging in your login credentials lets you upload your shots to a Web folder that saves all your shots. Likewise, if you'd like to stay anonymous, Clip2Net will provide you with a URL where your shot is being hosted--although keep in mind that if you lose that URL, you won't be able to track it down again. … Read more