Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Weekly Wednesday Wrapup

This week the big copyright news story was the RIAA victory against Limewire, a file sharing website for copyright infringement. See Decision here. In the course of the decision, the Court specifically notes the success of the RIAA against individuals. See Decision at footnote 22.

Is this the zenith for the recording industry in lawsuits for copyright infringement for file sharing?

Quite possibly as the recording industry has claimed that it will stop pursuing file sharing copyright infringement lawsuits. [Wall Street Journal]

The number of copyright infringement lawsuits nearly doubled from 2004 to 2005 (just under 6,000 lawsuits filed) when the RIAA lawsuits for file sharing were ramping up. However, a steady decline in the number of lawsuits has occurred to the point were the number of copyright infringement lawsuits is slightly more than 2,000.
Source: Administrative Office of the Courts

As one set of copyright owners may be ending its lawsuits on file sharing…BitTorrent may be the next target. As technology advances, the spectrum and size of the files to be shared grows. The producers of the Best Picture – “The Hurt Locker” are threatening suit and to learn the identities of BitTorrent users that illegally copied the movie. [ABC News]

Given that the RIAA has paved the way with its successes in copyright infringement actions and learning the identities of downloaders through ISP subpoenas, the MPAA and its members may have an easier time stopping infringements (and possibly fewer lawsuits filed for movie downloads).

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