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RIAA Goes after LimeWire

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the another-one-bites-the-dust dept.

304

PCM2 writes "A coalition of major recording companies sued the operators of the file-sharing program LimeWire for copyright infringement Friday, claiming the firm encourages users to trade music without permission." From thge article: " The case is the first piracy lawsuit brought against a distributor of file-sharing software since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year that technology companies could be sued for copyright infringement on the grounds that they encouraged customers to steal music and movies over the Internet. In the complaint, the record companies contend LimeWire's operators are "actively facilitating, encouraging and enticing" computer users to steal music by failing to block access to copyright works and building a business model that allows them to profit directly from piracy. "

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304 comments

OMG! The only ones left to sue... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849728)

...are the operators of usenet.

Re:OMG! The only ones left to sue... (5, Funny)

Alan (347) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849882)

*shhhhhhhhh*

The first rule of UseNet is we don't talk about UseNet.

Re:OMG! The only ones left to sue... (1)

NonSequor (230139) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849985)

Things are going to be REALLY, REALLY bad when either legislators or the RIAA find out about Usenet.

Re:OMG! The only ones left to sue... (2, Funny)

Xtravar (725372) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850010)

They'll act like it's some new technology...

"This is like no other pirate application we have seen before!!!"

Re:OMG! The only ones left to sue... (2, Insightful)

nolife (233813) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850042)

STFU!
Usenet? Nothing to see here RIAA/MPAA, please move along.

I almost hate to talk about this subject, not because I feel seasoned or elite but only because I do fear a potential radar sighting. At a very slow but steady pace, the brontosaurus that is Usenet, is getting more flexibility on the front end. The days of manually saving and piecing together messages in the right order and piping them to the right converter went away well over a decade ago. It can now be just a few clicks if you choose. The fact that in order to have a reasonable quality of Usenet service requires a monthly fee is the only thing I believe that is keeping it under that radar but that same more centralized consolidated pay service is easier to attack and shut down.

When the comet comes, the brontosaurus will have to adapt or die.
 

Oh, Thank goodness (1)

Yonsen (866784) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849733)

i was afraid they would go after my precious pr0n..... *phewph*

But does it run UBUNTU? Does it run UBUNTU ?? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15850283)

But does it run UBUNTU? Does it run UBUNTU ??

in related news... (5, Insightful)

irving47 (73147) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849734)

The RIAA and MPAA are teaming up to sue the highway patrol of all states with interstates that border on other states for failing to stop them and prevent them from allowing friends to copy their DVD's and CD's.

Re:in related news... (4, Funny)

Travoltus (110240) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849762)

The cops will be required by the **AA to scan all cars with special equipment that detects copyright infringing data on CDs and DVDs.

Oh wait, I'm giving them ideas.........

Re:in related news... (2, Interesting)

sourcery (87455) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849792)

You forgot to mention the forthcoming suits against Sun for NFS and Microsoft for Windows File Sharing (both of which work just fine over the public internet, if your firewall permits it.)

Oh, and I almost forget the forthcoming suits against the makers of FTP software!

Re:in related news... (2, Informative)

Kelson (129150) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849858)

You forgot to mention the forthcoming suits against Sun for NFS and Microsoft for Windows File Sharing (both of which work just fine over the public internet, if your firewall permits it.)

Anyone else remember Scour [wikipedia.org] ? When it first launched, it was basically a search engine for public SMB shares.

They disappeared a few years ago. Three guesses why.

Re:in related news... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15850223)

I used scour. In a different way though.
You could attempt to use Windows network neighborhood with the search results but you had to modify your lmhosts/host file all the time (back then Windows explorer and net.exe only worked with netbios names and not ip addresses) and it was not reliable (and still questionable today). The other option was the Scour client which would only allow one transfer at a time and each selection you wanted to copy had to be manually selected. If I remember correctly, the shearer could exclude specific file from being "seen" or listed to the others as Windows itself did not actually have specific file permissions back then.

Enter smbclient via a *nix command line.
You could attach to the person via ip address and copy *.* from their share to your computer. No "exclusions" because of the lack or file permissions. You got everything in that share if you wanted it.
Another bonus. Win95 had a scaled down version of the msc for showing your shares and who was connected to them. smbclient allowed you to specify your computer name as an option, you could enter their computer name as your computer name and their Win95 machine and the Scour client they had running would not show you are being connected to their computer. I guess Win9x assumed you were local and the connection was not listed and Scour used that information in their client.

On a side note.. Many times people having shared a directory for Scour use, also had shared other directories because they did not know what they were doing or for other computers in their house maybe? Either way, c or c$ was often shared as well.

Even more off topic..
About the same time as Scour, home networks and broadband were catching on and it seemed no one understood that by default, sharing a drive or directory meant you were also sharing it to everyone on the internet as well. Having a port scanner, nbtscan (or a similar version that attempted default passwords/no password combinations), was a fun time.

Re:in related news... (4, Insightful)

macdaddy357 (582412) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849809)

Recording Industrialists Against Artists will try anything to make sure no one hears so much as a note of music without paying them. Music has existed since the dawn of time, not just since the invention of the phonograph. RIAA, you are obsolete and your products are too. No one needs you any more. Don't Buy CDs. [dontbuycds.org]

Re:in related news... (1)

Kremit (632241) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850116)

I haven't purchased a RIAA-related CD since 2000, and I don't plan on doing so anytime soon.

Re:in related news... (2, Insightful)

niktemadur (793971) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850118)

I make it a point to buy CDs only from small, independent labels. All the rest of the stuff I listen to I download in industrial quantities, savoring the fact that I'm not putting a single additional cent into the RIAA's coffers. I refuse to subsidize Britney's or Mariah's multimillion dollar contracts. I refuse to subsidize corporate suits recruiting an army of shysters to terrorize the population, instead of creatively working towards win-win scenarios.

Furthermore, I do not listen to Clear Channel stations, for too many reasons to discuss here, but one of them is the payola monopoly they've built. I get my radio fixes through the internet, mainly public radio stations (KCRW, KFJC, WFMU) as well as Radio Nova from Paris.

Ever heard of a band called The Necks? They're an experimental ambient jazz outfit from Australia. I wrote them an email, asking them where I could buy one of their CDs, Sex. I got a great reply from the drummer of the band, telling me that they were in the process of getting a US distributor, Private Records, so it would only be a matter of a couple of months. How cool is that? I found the album (one track, sixty minutes long) on a certain P2P protocol, but opted not to download, as for guys like these, I'll happily wait and spend my money, which is exactly what I did.

Two questions:
1. What percentage of the music-loving public has taken the kind of boycott/support steps that I have?
2. What percentage is needed to bring the corporate bastards to their knees?
This may be a principled but losing battle. Case in point: I refuse to go to Wal-Mart, but still the damn place is jam-packed.

Re:in related news... (2, Interesting)

ewl1217 (922107) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849923)

That's a completely unfair comparison. Roads are essential in today's world. Give me a nice list of all the legitimate (read: legal) uses for LimeWire, and I'll believe you. I bet you can think of some, but I'm sure most people use LimeWire for illegal purposes.

Now they make be going after the wrong people, targeting the makers of LimeWire instead of the file-sharers, but a nice crackdown on illegal file-sharing sure beats some new, twisted form of DRM.

Re:in related news... (4, Insightful)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850006)

Give me a nice list of all the legitimate (read: legal) uses for LimeWire, and I'll believe you. I bet you can think of some, but I'm sure most people use LimeWire for illegal purposes.

So what? Grokster did not destroy the Sony rule. So it doesn't matter whether most people use LimeWire illegally.

Now they make be going after the wrong people, targeting the makers of LimeWire instead of the file-sharers,

Not at all. First, it's entirely possible to go after them and win. See e.g. the Napster and Grokster cases. The law allows indirect infringers to be sued just as easily as direct infringers. Second, plaintiffs would prefer to go after LimeWire. They have a policy of going after the deep pocket (i.e. a defendant that can actually pay the damages awarded). But more importantly, they have a policy of going after the head of the snake. If LimeWire shuts down, then all of their users will have to find new networks or stop sharing. Some will likely stop sharing. Others will go to new networks, but those will be shut down too, in turn. The idea is to stop P2P filesharing by shutting down the networks and software developers. Then it doesn't matter whether the users want to infringe in this fashion; they lack the ready ability to do so. Going after direct infringers is less useful to plaintiffs since it achieves less. Why go after one infringer, or a handful, when you can essentially go after them all by targeting the network?

Get the picture?

but a nice crackdown on illegal file-sharing sure beats some new, twisted form of DRM.

That is absolutely not how that works. They'll do both. What you're suggesting is appeasement, but I guarantee you that it won't work.

Re:in related news... (2, Insightful)

Traiklin (901982) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850232)

That's a completely unfair comparison. Roads are essential in today's world. Give me a nice list of all the legitimate (read: legal) uses for LimeWire, and I'll believe you. I bet you can think of some, but I'm sure most people use LimeWire for illegal purposes.
Limewire can be used to offset the bandwidth loads of legit music and movies (just as torrents are)
Roads can be used to help legit people get from one point to another

Limewire can be used to distribute illegal movies and music.
Roads can be used to transport illegal drugs, illegal movies & music, illegal aliens, illegal weapons, illegal fireworks, illegal bombs.

Limewire can be used to distribute information on how to make bombs and other devices.
Roads can be used to distribute information on how to make bombs and other devices.
Roads can be used to transport kidnappers to a location and kidnap someone who knows how to make a bomb or other device.
Roads can be used to transport the materials to create a bomb or other device.
Roads can be used to transport the device made to it's location and kill hundreds of people.

Roads are used for the Telcos & Cablecos to maintaint their wires so we can have fast internet connections.
Roads are used for people to get to work and earn money to pay for their connection to the internet.
Roads are used to transport people to locations to make the music or film the movie.
Roads are used to transport the finished product to the distributer.
Roads are used to distribute the product.

Roads are used to steal the product in route to it's location.
Roads are used to help people speed away from a crime.

So...can you tell me how Limewire kills people? or transports illegal drugs, aliens, weapons, fireworks, bombs or drugs?

So I guess I will turn your question around on you,

That's a completely unfair comparison. Give me a nice list of all the legitimate (read: legal) uses for Roads, and I'll believe you. I bet you can think of some, but I'm sure most people use Roads for illegal purposes.

See how stupid it looks? just cause a few (same ammount that use Limewire) use roads for illegal reasons, does it mean that EVERYONE uses them for illegal reasons?

Re:in related news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849928)

Why in the hell did moderators decide to moderate this as insightful? This is at best funny, but probably more along the lines of dumb!

Re:in related news... (4, Funny)

hedwards (940851) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849941)

Satan should really be suing *AA for violations on his patent on devious and inane abuses of courts;
as well as making it much more difficult for him to download his favorite Britney spears' albums.

BS (3, Insightful)

jimktrains (838227) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849735)

This is like sueing Remington because guns make it easier to kill people.

Re:BS (3, Insightful)

TFGeditor (737839) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849771)

"This is like sueing Remington because guns make it easier to kill people."

You do realize this has been done (unsuccessfully) by dozens of city governments against a variety of gun manufacturers and importers?

Re:BS (1)

jimktrains (838227) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849789)

1) It's stupid
2) as you said, it was unsuccessfull

Re:BS (1)

TFGeditor (737839) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849826)

I once wtote an editorial encouraging cities to sue liquor manufacturers for all the carnage caused by their products: vehicle accidents, unwanted pregnancies, teen alcoholism, etc. I further suggested that to "reduce the amount of alcohol on the streets and preven 'straw purchases', we need laws limiting alcohol purchases by individuals to no more than one U.S. gallon in aggregate per month."

Further, automobiles cause thousands of deaths per year, are used to commit and facillitate crimes, etc. So, why isn't somebody suing auto makers?

**AA and those of similar mindset are prime examples of ignorance (or maybe stupidity) gone to seed.

Re:BS (1)

packeteer (566398) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849944)

The difference is that Remington has lots of money to buy lawyers to defend themselves. If the government going after you for something equally as stupid your probably out of luck becuase you can afford million in legal fees.

Re:BS (2, Insightful)

Hercules Peanut (540188) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849975)

You do realize this has been done (unsuccessfully) by dozens of city governments against a variety of gun manufacturers and importers?

You do realize that the gun lobby is much better funded than the P2P lobby, right?

Re:BS (1)

Stonehand (71085) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850011)

They probably can't outspend the Department of Housing and Urban Development, however.

Re:BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15850260)

I think you have that backwards, the gun lobbies, gun supporters, and those in the arms business could easily out spend a city and probably many states. As what most would call a "gun-nut" I'm glad for this.

Re:BS (1)

Kohath (38547) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850080)

You do realize that the gun lobby is much better funded than the P2P lobby, right?

Were they lobbying the courts?

The gun industry also has that whole "right to bear arms" thing going for it. I think it might be a factor in their success.

Re:BS (1)

PatTheGreat (956344) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850022)

Oh oh oh! I saw this Law and Order!

They lost the case.

Re:BS (2, Informative)

nevernamed (957351) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850039)

I agree. The more that you penalize people for the things they make the less innovation you will have. Those idiots are stifling creativity.

I'll see your BS, and raise you one. (1)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850044)

This is like sueing Remington because guns make it easier to kill people.

Not really. Companies like Remington go to enormous lengths to label everything they ship, and infuse every bit of their marketing message with the "don't hurt people with our products, please." They pump lots of money and support into law enforcement, safety training for hunters and sport shooters, and they expressly fund programs that teach kids how to be safe with a firearm if they get involved in such sports.

Suing such a manufacturer for a criminal's misuse of their product isn't even a little bit like suing the provider of a service that deliberately cultivates a culture of users that traffic in warez, entertainment that's been ripped off, and specifically builds such traffic into their revenue model. Remington doesn't woo, encourage, and project profits based upon the actions of murderers buying their products - and you've made a poor analogy.

Which is why... (4, Insightful)

barakn (641218) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849745)

Xerox should be sued for first marketing the photocopier.

Re:Which is why... (3, Funny)

Hotawa Hawk-eye (976755) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849870)

No, they will first sue International Paper [wikipedia.org] , Bic [bicworld.com] , Dixon Ticonderoga [wikipedia.org] , or Crayola [crayola.com] . After all, paper, pens, pencils, and crayons can all be used to make copies of pages of song lyrics or a scene of a movie.

And why stop there? Since blood can technically be used as a writing medium, the RIAA and MPAA will soon take the drastic step of suing every person on Earth with blood flowing in their veins.

Re:Which is why... (1)

Fluffy_Kitten (911430) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850123)

good thing I'm a vampire

Why aren't ISPs being sued instead? (4, Insightful)

joshetc (955226) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849760)

Or computer manufactuers, maybe just CD burner or hard disk makers. They all equally "allow" people to pirate via their resources. Just as much as limewire does at least..

Re:Why aren't ISPs being sued instead? (1)

joshetc (955226) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849770)

Sorry, meant to say as well. Almost forgot the RIAA is a bunch of greedy bastards.

Re:Why aren't ISPs being sued instead? (1)

Stonehand (71085) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849873)

Safe-harbour provisions.


In addition, they're considered neutral as they aren't based on encouraging the infringement. If Limewire built a business model around users' infringement and encouraged it, they've got problems.

Re:Why aren't ISPs being sued instead? (1)

Ruff_ilb (769396) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849947)

"Internet networks are in many respects already treated like common carriers. ISPs are largely immune from liability for third party content. The Good Samaritan provision of the Communications Decency Act established immunity from liability for third party content on grounds of libel or slander. The DMCA established that ISPs which comply with DMCA would not be liable for the copyright violations of third parties on their network."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_Carrier [wikipedia.org]

Re:Why aren't ISPs being sued instead? (2, Insightful)

joshetc (955226) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849966)

Uh, so isn't limewire then a common carrier as well? They don't segregate for or against any type of traffic..

Re:Why aren't ISPs being sued instead? (1)

AlgorithMan (937244) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849987)

in the UK they have plans for such laws making ISPs liable for the traffic going through their servers...
to show that this is the idea of a clueless politician (on voter hunt) I say five words and one number:

ssl connection tunneled over port 80

Time to sue Sony... (4, Funny)

DSW-128 (959567) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849765)

For making computers, and CD and DVD burners... They're the real enemy!

good precedent (1)

User 956 (568564) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849775)

The case is the first piracy lawsuit brought against a distributor of file-sharing software since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year that technology companies could be sued for copyright infringement on the grounds that they encouraged customers to steal music and movies over the Internet.

Maybe next, they can arrest me for trespassing, because I'm encouraging all you to go stand on your neighbors' lawns without permission.

Re:good precedent (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850004)

Maybe next, they can arrest me for trespassing, because I'm encouraging all you to go stand on your neighbors' lawns without permission.

or maybe they can arrest you for incitement to commit a crime: Advocacy of Unlawful Action and the "Incitement Test" [umkc.edu]

for which the penalty is likely to be greater than simple trespass.

Sun's java.com website still has LimeWire (2, Interesting)

CFrankBernard (605994) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849784)

Sun's java.com website still has LimeWire: http://java.com/en/desktop/limewire.jsp [java.com] and a banner for downloading it was recently on the java.com front page.

The RIAA has no case (5, Interesting)

cwalk (899502) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849793)

When you download limewire from limewire.com, you are prompted to make the following decision before your download begins: 1) I might use LimeWire BASIC for copyright infringement. OR 2) I will not use LimeWire BASIC for copyright infringement. Case closed.

Re:The RIAA has no case (2, Interesting)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850065)

Sorry counselor, but that isn't good enough.

It sounds as though RIAA is using the new inducement theory of indirect infringement. The rule there is:

[O]ne who distributes a device with the object of promoting its use to infringe copyright, as shown by clear expression or other affirmative steps taken to foster infringement, is liable for the resulting acts of infringement by third parties.


In applying that rule, the Court looked at everything from Grokster's business plan, advertisements, technology, and even their name. A little prompt might be a factor in LimeWire's favor, but that fig leaf isn't going to save them.

Re:The RIAA has no case (1)

boaz112358 (947978) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850081)

Your basing your whole case on the fact that they ask you to promise not to steal stuff? If I ever get sued, remind me not to hire you as my defense attorney.

They're still going after the wrong people... (5, Funny)

RulerOf (975607) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849794)

It's amazing to me that the RIAA hasn't figured out that they really need to sue those bastards that wrote TCP/IP and didn't think for a minute to include DRM in the original description... They've made so much money since all the networks that operate on the protocol so viciously promote piracy of copyrighted material. They should pay for their lack of foresight.

Re:They're still going after the wrong people... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849829)

Better yet, they shoud sue Al Gore. After all, he claims he's the one that invented the Internet. ;)

Man, that's a downer (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849804)

Thank God I use eMule.

Re:Man, that's a downer (1)

ThePengwin (934031) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850274)

You never know, it could be next.

Wrong Lawsuit (1)

Mishotaki (957104) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849811)

"claiming the firm encourages users to trade music without permission"
Wait... nowadays, we get a license to listen to the songs... you get DRM that stop you from doing anythign you want with what you buy....

Shouldn'T they sue the disk companies for that? i mean it's much more easier to use ripped songs than the official DRMed/Rootkitted songs that the music companies are giving us....

Missing the point (4, Interesting)

Mayhem178 (920970) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849818)

I think some people are missing the point here. LimeWire isn't under the gun because it "allows" users to illegally trade copyrighted material. The RIAA is asserting that the operators are encouraging its users to break copyright laws.

This claim is not unlike an accusation of slander. It's very difficult to truly prove that the intent of the accused was to cause harm to the accuser, yet this is the burden that the RIAA must now bear. I'm sure they have some sort of "proof" up their sleeves of LimeWire's misdeeds.

I'm in no way condoning the anti-consumer practices of the *AA as of late, but I suspect that the RIAA will win this one by precedent, sad though that may be.

Re:Missing the point (1)

Stonehand (71085) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849896)

Might be they're hoping to turn something up in a fishing expedition, in case somebody in Limewire was stupid enough to keep an e-mail or other document discussing how they might capitalize on copyright infringement, or if their advertising ever crossed that line.

Re:Missing the point (1)

K9-Cop (973731) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849924)

The proof is obvious to the courts. The courts believe, and probably rightly, that the vast majority of users of the Limewire software are using it to illegally distribute or download copyrighted material. According to their last ruling, for a software like this to be considered OK there must be overwhelming legal use of the software. That is, like most products, it should be used legally like 60% of the time (I'm pulling numbers out of a hat). As such, the software is considered illegal, and any promoters of that software (i.e. Limewire), ought to be sued for promoting an illegal act. Think of it this way, what percentage of Xerox copies are made legally? I'd say, considering business use, at least 90% of the time. What percentage of fridges are used legally? Again, probably 95% of the time. What about cars? A high percentage again. And finally, consider guns? What percentage of all the guns made are involved in a crime? Fairly low on a percentage basis. So, what percentage of the time do you think Limewire is used illegally?

Re:Missing the point (2, Informative)

Mr2001 (90979) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849996)

According to their last ruling, for a software like this to be considered OK there must be overwhelming legal use of the software. That is, like most products, it should be used legally like 60% of the time (I'm pulling numbers out of a hat).

That is a misinterpretation of the Grokster ruling and others. Look at the VCR, for example; as long as there's significant noninfringing use, the amount of infringing use doesn't matter.

Re:Missing the point (2, Insightful)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850033)

According to their last ruling, for a software like this to be considered OK there must be overwhelming legal use of the software.

That is completely wrong. The Grokster case did not remove the Sony rule. It added a new, independent theory of infringement that bypasses Sony. This rule has nothing to do with how the technology is used. Rather, it has to do with how the defendant acted and what the defendant said. If the defendant expected and provoked infringements, he's liable, even if there were only a few of them and the technology was overwhelmingly used lawfully.

Re:Missing the point (2, Insightful)

shawb (16347) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849925)

Whether LimeWire encourages people to break copyright laws will be left up to the courts, and you can bet that this will reach all the way to the supreme court. LimeWire's main defense here is the little "I might use LimeWire BASIC for copyright infringement." and "I will not use LimeWire BASIC for copyright infringement" radio buttons on the download page. Whether this counts as a binding agreement between LimeWire and the users in such a way that it relieves LimeWire of the responsibility to monitor for and stop copyright infringement is still quite up in the air. I think what's going to kill LimeWire is the offer of LimeWire pro... charging for and profitting from this is going to put a lot more responsibility in their hands.

And to everyone saying "The RIAA/MPAA is just trying to stop people from watching their stuff without paying" in this case is a strawman argument... this case is about stopping a corporation from directly profiting on the copyright infringement of their legally held intellectual property. Whether or not you believe that Copyright is morally repugnant, it is still protected by law. And it is really hard to claim civil disobedience when you are making a profit.

Re:Missing the point (1)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850027)

you can bet that this will reach all the way to the supreme court.

I'll take that bet. The rule was already settled in the recent Grokster case. Since there's nothing new, the Supreme Court will refuse to hear the case if anyone even bothers to ask.

LimeWire's main defense here is the little "I might use LimeWire BASIC for copyright infringement." and "I will not use LimeWire BASIC for copyright infringement" radio buttons on the download page. Whether this counts as a binding agreement between LimeWire and the users in such a way that it relieves LimeWire of the responsibility to monitor for and stop copyright infringement is still quite up in the air.

Wrong again. That's no defense at all. The inducement theory will put all of LimeWire's actions and statements on the table. If they've generally encouraged infringement by word or deed, a peppering of a few warnings not to infringe will not help them out. Nor can anything their users agree to matter in a case between LimeWire and the RIAA.

think what's going to kill LimeWire is the offer of LimeWire pro... charging for and profitting from this is going to put a lot more responsibility in their hands.

It'll put a vicarious infringement theory into play, but it's really pretty minor, to tell the truth. They're pretty certainly screwed regardless of whether they had commercial software.

RIAA needs to learn English (5, Insightful)

Kelson (129150) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849824)

the record companies contend LimeWire's operators are "actively facilitating, encouraging and enticing" computer users to steal music by failing to block access to copyright works (emphasis added)

Based on that complaint, it sounds more like they're passively encouraging people, at best.

Either that or the fact that I've never held up a stop sign in the middle of the street means that I'm actively encouraging people to run red lights.

Re:RIAA needs to learn English (2, Informative)

vandelais (164490) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849906)

What about the word "Steal". If you mean download songs I already purchased from the record companies in casette format that the sun melted before the concept of fair use was legal precedent, then I suppose that's stealing. Ex post facto and they can't prove I didn't.

Re:RIAA needs to learn English (1)

RulerOf (975607) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850057)

If you mean download songs I already purchased from the record companies in casette format...


Downloading isn't what's illegal or against fair use or whatnot. It's the sharing that is. I think there's substantial legel precedent to be set by the person that actually has enough money to fight and the logs to prove that though he shared files, he never actually inadvertantly uploaded them to anyone other than the copyright holder who's trying to file a lawsuit against him.

OT: I'm a little extra adamant about this particular subject because I managed to get sued by the RIAA (yeah, I'm a sucker) and I remember when it happened too. I used to snag stuff on filesharing networks (mostly porn :P) and I kept all my media in the same folder. I would cancel the uploads a lot when they rolled around which wasn't often because I was usually the only source for most of the files I possessed. I leave the client open for the whole night one evening, and the next morning, I see something like 15 pages of uploads (small pages, but pages). I was astonished, but thought nothing of it. A few months later a letter came in the mail...

Re:RIAA needs to learn English (3, Informative)

Chazmati (214538) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850016)

I thought when you installed Limewire, you were actually asked whether you planned to infringe any copyrights. I answered no, of course, so I'm not sure what happens if you answer yes, but it *felt* like they were against copyright infringement. That's more like (somewhat passively) DISCOURAGING people.

Re:RIAA needs to learn English (1)

RulerOf (975607) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850025)

The lawsuit here (though I didn't RTFA) seems to state that, because file sharing networks are stereotypically outlets for piracy, Limewire's authors are somehow responsible for not protecting against a probable activity on their network.

Re:RIAA needs to learn English (2, Insightful)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850079)

Based on that complaint, it sounds more like they're passively encouraging people, at best.

It's a factor. Take it seriously.

From the Grokster case:

Second, this evidence of unlawful objective is given added significance by MGM's showing that neither company attempted to develop filtering tools or other mechanisms to diminish the infringing activity using their software. While the Ninth Circuit treated the defendants' failure to develop such tools as irrelevant because they lacked an independent duty to monitor their users' activity, we think this evidence underscores Grokster's and StreamCast's intentional facilitation of their users' infringement. ...

Of course, in the absence of other evidence of intent, a court would be unable to find contributory infringement liability merely based on a failure to take affirmative steps to prevent infringement, if the device otherwise was capable of substantial noninfringing uses. Such a holding would tread too close to the Sony safe harbor.

Re:RIAA needs to learn English (1)

KillerBob (217953) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850095)

Last time I installed LimeWire, I was required to click through a page that wouldn't install unless I said that "No, I will not use LimeWire or their services to commit copyright infringement." Admittedly, that was several versions of LW and several reinstalls of my OS ago (I experiment a lot), but I doubt LimeWire would be stupid enough to remove that kind of clickpage.

SVK mirror (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849836)

It might be a good idea right now to use SVK to mirror the whole limewire SVN repository, before it gets pulled from the net.

CAPTCHA: thefts

Pathetic (1)

ViperAFK (960095) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849841)

What the RIAA is doing is pathetic, it's there own fault people pirate music, because of overpriced cd's and drm's, some people just do it because they don't like the RIAA, there efforts are futile, new p2p networks and applicatiions will spring up.

Re:Pathetic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849901)

It's her own fault she got raped, wearing such a short dress in a bad neighborhood.. her efforts to resist are futile

Re:Pathetic (1)

rockhome (97505) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850107)

What the RIAA is doing is pathetic, it's there own fault people pirate music, because of overpriced cd's and drm's,

That is no execuse for piracy. Look, if you disagree with their business model or pricing, don't use the product. At all.

Piracy is not a valid form of protest, boycott is.

Re:Pathetic (1)

niktemadur (793971) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850268)

I was under the impression that 'piracy' in a modern context was the act of selling (or buying) duplicated goods, therefore an unauthorized profit is being turned. Maybe the definition has been revised since Napster?

However, if we use the term 'file-sharing', we are back on neutral ground, with none of those nasty, loaded terms that obfuscate polite conversation. I remember that a couple of years ago, the courts had not yet decided on the legality (or ilegality) of file-sharing. However, when the US Senate puts a man like Sen. Ted Stevens in charge of an internet oversight commitee, you know exactly on what side the law is going to be tilted towards. Remember, the internet is not a dumptruck, it's a series of tubes. Also, remember there are around 64 corporate lobbyists for every congressman in Washington, none of them representing your interests, or mine.

When a nation's political process has been hijacked by corporate interests, the law, on moral grounds, tends to slant towards illegality. Witness how the exclusive use copyright for Mickey Mouse was set to expire a couple of years ago, and congress took the time to vote for extending the copyright for Disney. That's illegal, man. But then, there's always a Palpatine or two: "I will make it legal."

So.,.... (1)

BungeBash (971979) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849885)

When are the creator(s) of the internet gonna start getting suid by the RIAA becuase the internet encourages the trading of things, and music gets traded. So be it the transitive property if a=b and b=c, then a=c.

Fork Limewire, quick! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849886)

'nuff said.

Quite the Contrary (4, Insightful)

Kennego (963972) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849903)

Although it is a file-sharing program, of all the ones I've used, Limewire is the one that actively DISCOURAGES copyright infringement the MOST.

I guess the RIAA couldn't go very long without finding another way to annoy the crap out of everyone...

Space balloon (-1, Offtopic)

aersixb9 (267695) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849909)

Since a ballon filled with air and immersed in water does not collapse, but rather floats to the surface, would a ballon filled with space in our atmosphere float back up to space, and not collapse?

Re:Space balloon (-1, Offtopic)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849950)

Since a ballon filled with air and immersed in water does not collapse. . .

False premise.

. . .would a ballon filled with space in our atmosphere float back up to space, and not collapse?

Your false premise points to the answer. The Balloon would expand.

Pop!

That's why weather balloons look like someone forgot to put the space in 'em when they let 'em go. They look full once they get up there.

KFG

FTP, IETF, IP, ISPs and copper mining... (2, Insightful)

panZ (67763) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849933)

Next they'll sue people who make simple ftp servers on the same grounds, then the IETF for coming up with file transfer protocols, then anyone having anything to do with routable networks like DARPA and while we're at at it, why not just sue the people who melt sand to make fiber optics and mine the copper that makes our cables for not explicitly "failing to block access to copyright works". Shoot, we should just sue people for existing.

Re:FTP, IETF, IP, ISPs and copper mining... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849970)

it's only if the software encourages copyright infringment.

Which is different then allows it, or it is possible to do with it.
A common distinction that the courts have been making in regards to other laws for a very long time.

Re:FTP, IETF, IP, ISPs and copper mining... (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849999)

Anything that makes it this easy (which is everything the internet is) is just asking for it to happen. If you were to leave the doors of a store unlocked and propped open at night, and all the cops were in another town, and the power went out so all the surveillance equipment was dead, that's not really asking for people to come in and steal everything. But in just about any heavily populated are that store wouldn't have a crumb small enough for a mouse left. There's nothing that should make those things foster crime, but it does. The entire internet is no more than a honey pot for sharing copyrighted information.

Of course, one could say the same thing about guns, or cars, or easily-obtained-credit. But those people have specific lobbying groups that make sure they don't get into trouble. The people don't have any cohesive representation, and the US congress is proof.

Re:FTP, IETF, IP, ISPs and copper mining... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15850153)

That hasn't stopped them with LimeWire - have you tried downloading it? They do everything that's possible in their case to discourage copyright infringment (checkboxes on download, and warnings when you try to download any file without license information attached while using it). I'm pretty sure the post you replied to was an attempt at humour though.

The wrong reason to sue... (1)

spywhere (824072) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849943)

Instead of the RIAA, Elliot Spitzer should go after them for distributing so much spyware with their program, and barely disclosing it a hundred pages deep in their EULA.

F**K The Supreme Court (2, Insightful)

WCD_Thor (966193) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849957)

They should never have ruled that it was ok to go after software makers like this. Its the users fault, unless you want to rule them sub-human and not capable of controlling them selves.

comparable case (4, Funny)

AlgorithMan (937244) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849960)

microsoft is actively encouraging hackers to write virusses, trojans, worms etc. (since the protection is so poor)
so this means microsoft must be accountable for any damage that any worm, virus, trojan etc. does to any windows pc on this planet...

Limewire (1)

ezwip (974076) | more than 7 years ago | (#15849976)

I never liked Limewire. The only reason that I ever used it is because you could d/l pro if you said you were a previous customer and put in email aol@aol.com. Getting the entire album is just a pain. 90% of anything I searched for returned 100 trojans 100kb in size every single time. Maybe I just really suck at searching, but I think Limewire really sucked when it came to d/ling music. The other p2p out there owned it hands down.

Police Cause Crime. (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15849993)

In related news, RIAA will sue all local and state police forces for causing crime.

Since police do not block every roadway and put GPS kill switches in all private cars,
police are the cause of all crimes committed in the USA. Not the actual bad actors who do bad things, they are not to blame - it's all the police's fault!

So, you can sue a software manufacturer for alledged crimes committed by people who use the software, but you can not sue a Gun manufacturer for making an explicitly lethal device that 'cause' bank robberies, wars, muggings, and small child deaths?

Using RIAA anti-logic,
the USA should disband all it's armed forces and give all
the USAs weapons to Hezbollah to ensure peace for Israel and safety for U.S. citizens.

BAR... (1)

davidc (91400) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850003)

...Stewards.

I have no further comment.

Oh no! (1)

frostoftheblack (955294) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850031)

..Not LimeWire!! What are we going to do now that the one, single, all-encompassing source of illegal contraband is going to be sued and possibly shutdown??? MP3's are going to be eliminated forever!!!!!!

So developers of the world, have you thought of a name for that new file-sharing device that you're creating?

Lack of interest much? (5, Informative)

Gli7ch (954537) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850040)

Remember kids, Limewire is just a Gnutella client. If they shut down Limewire, we still have a dozen more clients [wikipedia.org] we can use just as well.

Hooray for Open Source fully distributed networks!

Pathetic, but bound to happen. (1)

xXShadowstormXx (939073) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850047)

This is pathetic. But it was bound to happen. I mean, look at the people they have sued (from Wiki): The RIAA has been criticised in the media after they subpoenaed Gertrude Walton, an 83-year-old grandmother who had died in December of 2004 [23]. Mrs. Walton stood accused of swapping rock, pop and rap songs. The RIAA in 2003 attempted to sue Sarah Seabury Ward, a 66 year-old sculptor residing in Boston, Massachusetts. They alleged that she shared more than 2,000 songs illegally. The RIAA dropped the suit when it was discovered that she was a computer novice. The case was dismissed, but without prejudice. The RIAA has also been criticised for bringing lawsuits against children, such as 12 year old Brianna LaHara in 2003 [24]. The RIAA also attempted to sue Candy Chan of Michigan, for the alleged actions of her daughter, 13 year old Brittany Chan. The court dismissed Priority Records v. Chan [25] because it was ruled that the mother could not be sued for the alleged infringements of her daughter. [26] When the court ruled in favor of the mother, dismissing the case, the RIAA proceeded to sue her child. However, prosecuting a minor is more difficult, and many previous adult defendants have said that the P2P software installation and copyright infringement was done without their knowledge by one of their children. And on a related note: The RIAA's recent targeting of students has generated controversy as well. An April 4th story in the MIT campus newspaper The Tech indicates that an RIAA representative stated to Cassi Hunt, an alleged file-sharer, that previously, "the RIAA has been known to suggest that students drop out of college or go to community college in order to be able to afford settlements."[27] Is that PATHETIC or what?! RIAA/MPAA needs to die. The world would be a better place.

Network's Still Together (0, Redundant)

tonyr1988 (962108) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850062)

Even if they manage to shut down Limewire, people will just move to another client in the Gnutella [wikipedia.org] network.

No different than Napster and Kazaa, to name a few.

Will the RIAA ever realize this?

Re:Network's Still Together (1)

Gli7ch (954537) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850096)

"No different than Napster and Kazaa, to name a few. "

Except that Gnutella is a fully distributed network, while Napster and Kazaa are centralised and partially centralised (respectively).

Re:Network's Still Together (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15850119)

Except that gnutella is utter shite.

RIAA's real plan... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15850074)

I don't think RIAA really cares about Limewire per se, so much as eliminating any *business* built on file-sharing technology. Once the businesses are out of the way, they can effectively lobby Congress for anti-filesharing technology laws with little commercial opposition. Money buys laws. Your pathetic complaints to your congressman mean little without a unified effort. With no business interests to oppose them, RIAA will have their way pretty easily.

So they should also.. (1)

bruno.fatia (989391) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850163)

Go after Microsoft, eBay, Yahoo!, Google, because the formers wrote/own, respectively, MSN Messenger, Skype, Yahoo! Instant Messenger, GTalk, which due to it's ability to send file without doing a prior check if both sides (a) own the copyright for the file. (b) can, legally read the file contents and do whatever. They should sue Microsoft twice as they wrote Microsoft Windows(R), which allow such kind of file to exist in the hard drive and be easly swapped with unknown people

on the grounds that they .... (1)

future assassin (639396) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850172)

encouraged customers to steal music and movies over the Internet

Wait a minute, isn't having retardly high prices for all but pop music contibuting to people strealing music?

Re:on the grounds that they .... (1)

ThePengwin (934031) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850310)

Are you saying the RIAA should sue the record companies??
I'm all for that!

Limewire agreement. (1)

Mr. Freeman (933986) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850204)

When you download limewire you have to select one of two options "I might use limewire for copyright infringement" or "I will not use limewire for copyright infringement". Selecting the former option does not allow you to download limewire. And then of course there's the 50 page EUlA which probably mentions something about not being liable for your actions.

Also, fuck the RIAA/MPAA and their large scale sue-everyone-and-get-rich-quite scheme.

OH NOES!!! DOWNGRADE MY PERSONAL JET?!? (0, Redundant)

ZeonZumDeikun (988490) | more than 7 years ago | (#15850230)

LimeWire wont work if you tell the truth when you install it. If you check the box saying you might use it for piracy, it wont work. So LimeWire isnt responsible. Why stop there? Why dont you blabbering fatcats complaining about "ethics" and "copyright infringement" sue Colt and Remington because they profit directly from guns used to kill people and rob banks? How about sueing Epson and Hewlett Packard because their printers can print copyrighted photographs, child pornography or pages from books?

Why is this a right online? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#15850302)

Why is obtaining something you don't own for free a right on the internet?

You don't own it, but its easy, so therefore it should be lega? I don't like these companies but you have to pay for it. How'd you feel if I hotwired your car and drove it for a week? I"m just borrowing it and it was really easy! Douchebags...
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