November 6th, 2010 09:11 EST
Woman Fined $1.5 Million For Downloads - Are You Kidding Me?
A woman in Minnesota is being fined $1.5 million for... Illegally downloading 24 songs. The case was on behalf of the Recording Industry Association of America, or RIAA, which rhymes with "diarrhea, which is fitting for a group of idiots like that.
Three separate juries ruled in favor of diaRIAA - how juvenile, I meant - RIAA, and all offered a draconian fine for Jammie Thomas. The songs in question would have cost a paltry $24 on iTunes. RIAA said in a statement "Now with three jury decisions behind us along with a clear affirmation of Ms. Thomas-Rasset`s willful liability, it is our hope that she finally accepts responsibility for her actions."
The woman, a single mom, said that she can`t pay the fine. RIAA firmly stands behind the ruling.
Look, I understand that RIAA is upset because the multitude of people that use peer-to-peer networks is much too strong for these blockheads to handle. So what do they do? Like any clueless bully, they dish out undue punishment. If you want to be consistent and strive to avoid being vilified, grow a spine and go after EVERY SINGLE PERSON that downloads music illegally.
All you need to do is go after the perpetrators that made up 95 percent of all music downloads in 2008 - some 40 billion estimated illegal music downloads. An estimate was released by a study from University of Hertfordshire that found on average, any given teenager has 842 illegally downloaded tracks on his or her MP3 player. That was in the United Kingdom ALONE.
Making this woman a scapegoat for something that has become a widely accepted practice to millions worldwide is not only unfair, it`s stripped of any logic. If you arrest 10 people for stealing edible women`s underwear and have equal evidence to convict them all, would you only jail one as a deterrent for others to steal? No, you`d jail them all!
Here`s another mark of stupidity emanating from RIAA and other anti-P2P loudmouths: P2P sites have been around for a long, long time. You`ve had about over 10 YEARS to start eliminating these networks that freely trade stolen music. Limewire has bitten the dust, and I`m sure others like Frostwire and Kazaa are soon to die. Torrents have surged in recent years, and they`ve been targeted by file sharing antagonists. Napster was famously reamed by Lars Ulrich of Metallica, but he shut up when he realized how much money he had and how widely accepted file sharing has become (Sorry Lars, I still love ya.) So, RIAA, why haven`t you more actively tried to get the remaining sites shut down? You`re only victims of your own laziness and stupidity.
I don`t hate RIAA because of what they`re doing; I couldn`t care less about their self-righteous crusade against illegal downloads. I hate RIAA for reasons that pertain to their attempt to monopolize the recording industry and their willingness to produce and sell cheaply made garbage. They aren`t for the artists - like any other big business, they`re about the money.
This woman is nothing more than a martyr for the millions that will never get caught. I am taking the time to write RIAA a nice long letter about how unjust and moronic this fine on Ms. Thomas truly is. If you`re as upset as me, I suggest you do the same. We can`t sit back and let swollen corporate bullies keep taking more than they need. That`s all politics is - now do you want this crap to permeate your world of music?
Note: The author of this article is no longer affiliated with theSOP.