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Thread: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

  1. #41
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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    It was the judge that fined the woman. Does the judge work for the music company or does that judge for the state aka the tax payers?
    No, no it wasn't.

    Don't let the fact that CNN is retarded keep you from the truth.

    Thomas verdict: willful infringement, $1.92 million penalty - Ars Technica

    A new lawyer, a new jury, and a new trial were not enough to save Jammie Thomas-Rasset. In a repeat of the verdict from her first federal trial, Thomas-Rasset was found liable for willfully infringing all 24 copyrights controlled by the four major record labels at issue in the case. The jury awarded the labels damages totaling a whopping $1.92 million. As the dollar amount was read in court, Thomas-Rasset gasped and her eyes widened.

    Kiwi Camara, Thomas-Rasset's lead attorney, spoke briefly after the trial. He told reporters that when he first heard the $80,000 per song damage award, he was "angry about it" and said he had been convinced that any liability finding would have been for the minimum amount of $750 per song.

    As for Thomas-Rasset, she appeared shaken by the verdict but didn't blame the jury. "They did their job," she said, "I'm not going to hold it against them."
    The woman only COPIED 24 DOLLARS worth of merchandise. The company should not get a penny more than that
    Yes, because that's how all laws must work.
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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    If I get a $500 ticket for leaving dog poop on the ground, is that because it's "worth" $500, or is there another reason?
    So your saying it would be justified for a judge to award me your house if you stepped on my lawn and damaged a couple blades of grass in order to deter other people from stepping on other people's lawns?
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    I just want to take a moment to reflect on the fact that I'm getting lectured on proportionality by a guy who thinks that looking at pictures of nude 17 year olds should be punished by death.

    el oh el
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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illgally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    So your saying it would be justified for a judge to award me your house if you stepped on my lawn and damaged a couple blades of grass in order to deter other people from stepping on other people's lawns?
    If millions of people were going around damaging peoples lawns and getting away with it and the cumulative effect of that was to cause damage that was worth several thousand houses, then I would have no problem whatsoever with a JURY deciding to award you damages in a significant amount pursuant to the law.
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    No, no it wasn't.

    Don't let the fact that CNN is retarded keep you from the truth.

    Thomas verdict: willful infringement, $1.92 million penalty - Ars Technica

    Yes, because that's how all laws must work.
    Wait, hold up, that's sig material. You're forgiven

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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    Absolutely - and that's exactly what happens in real life.

    If all four people got caught and you wanted to sue for the cost of the sofa, each of them would only owe you 1/4th of the total cost. If only one got caught, you could sue him for the total cost.
    That is absurd and doesn't even make practical sense. Suppose I sue the sofa thief for cost of all four of my items, and win. The police then find the guy who stole my TV. Can I still sue him too? Can I sue him for the value of the two items that weren't recovered? Can I sue him for the cost of the sofa? Will I have to reimburse the sofa thief?

    What if I had my car stolen when it was parked in a different part of town? Can I sue the guy who broke into my house and stole my sofa for that too?

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC
    And many smaller stores (especially those in ****ty areas) have the exact opposite policy. I had probably a half dozen juvenile cases for shoplifting where the merchandise was valued at $5 or $10. The stores have an absolute no tolerance policy for shoplifting because they can't afford to do otherwise.
    Well that's up to them. If they feel that it's cost-effective to sue someone for stealing $5 of merchandise, best of luck. If not, too bad. That is not a valid reason to fine someone a ridiculously excessive amount.

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC
    Because the laws aren't structured in such a fashion because shoplifting is caught more frequently than file-sharing by several orders of magnitude.

    Again, it's not cost-efficient to sue if damages are only nominal. We're back to the earlier point about nuisances writing the laws.
    And again, this is where your JD clashes with my MBA. You seem to be operating under the assumption that every time someone is wronged, a lawsuit should be the default response. And if it isn't cost-effective, then by golly, the government should MAKE it cost-effective. I simply disagree with that reasoning. If it isn't cost-effective, then don't sue.

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC
    Penalties/punishments are designed to be as large as they need to be to deter the crime. A $500 littering fine works because it's not worth risking $500 for me to throw my trash on the ground. If stealing music were only punishable by $500, why would anyone hesitate? You can steal $500 worth of **** in about 10 minutes.
    Deterrence is typically a matter for CRIMINAL cases or especially egregious civil cases (which stealing $1 songs is not).

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC
    Don't know. Probably because this has more of a deterrent effect in their eyes because it makes everyone hesitate, not just the huge users.

    (Of course, even they seem to have changed their minds on this strategy.)
    Well you went to law school and I didn't, but according to Wikipedia:

    In response to judges and juries which award high punitive damages verdicts, the Supreme Court of the United States has made several decisions which limit awards of punitive damages through the due process of law clauses of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution. In a number of cases, the Court has indicated that a 4:1 ratio between punitive and compensatory damages is broad enough to lead to a finding of constitutional impropriety, and that any ratio of 10:1 or higher is almost certainly unconstitutional.
    I wonder what they'd think about 80,000:1.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 06-19-09 at 02:56 AM.
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  7. #47
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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    I just want to take a moment to reflect on the fact that I'm getting lectured on proportionality by a guy who thinks that looking at pictures of nude 17 year olds should be punished by death.

    el oh el
    I do not think looking at pictures of nude 17 year olds should get you the death penalty. Going after these people who look at such pictures is like the people who have their 15-17 year old daughter's 18 year old boyfriend with statutory rape, a blatant abuse of what the law was intended for. The whole point of laws against child pornography is to protect young children from being sexually abused by adults.
    Last edited by jamesrage; 06-19-09 at 02:58 AM.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

  8. #48
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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illgally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    If millions of people were going around damaging peoples lawns and getting away with it and the cumulative effect of that was to cause damage that was worth several thousand houses, then I would have no problem whatsoever with a JURY deciding to award you damages in a significant amount pursuant to the law.
    A few blades of grass is not worth your house,its not even worth a bag of grass seed.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

  9. #49
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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    That is absurd and doesn't even make practical sense. Suppose I sue the sofa thief for cost of all four of my items, and win. The police then find the guy who stole my TV. Can I still sue him too? Can I sue him for the value of the two items that weren't recovered? Can I sue him for the cost of the sofa? Will I have to reimburse the sofa thief?
    You can only be compensated for your total loss. The first guy who had to pay you all of it can then sue the second guy to force him to reimburse the first guy for his share.

    Well that's up to them. If they feel that it's cost-effective to sue someone for stealing $5 of merchandise, best of luck. If not, too bad. That is not a valid reason to fine someone a ridiculously excessive amount.

    And again, this is where your JD clashes with my MBA. You seem to be operating under the assumption that every time someone is wronged, a lawsuit should be the default response. And if it isn't cost-effective, then by golly, the government should MAKE it cost-effective. I simply disagree with that reasoning. If it isn't cost-effective, then don't sue.
    The alternative is to effectively repeal copyright protection. I believe that would cause greater harm than this.

    Deterrence is typically a matter for CRIMINAL cases or especially egregious civil cases (which stealing $1 songs is not).
    It's common in civil cases too.

    Well you went to law school and I didn't, but according to Wikipedia:

    I wonder what they'd think about 80,000:1.
    These aren't punitive damages. I can't find the actual decision to see whether it was actual damages or statutory, but neither of those is subject to the same limitations.

    I believe this is the relevant statute:

    US CODE: Title 17,504. Remedies for infringement: Damages and profits

    (Off to bed for the night, will continue this tomorrow).
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

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    Re: Woman fined $1.9 million for illegally downloading 24 songs

    $1.9 million is ridiculous. Owing $1.9 million could destroy a person. While I also think it's unreasonable to just charge her the small amount the songs would have cost I have to agree $1.9 is complete and utter overkill.

    Then again my husband once sued in court and won and winning doesn't necessarily mean crap. It was decided by the courts that we were owed $7,688. But the person never paid still to this day. My grandfather also won an asbestos suit decades ago. He too, supposedly was going to be receiving money from his claim. He died and that still hasn't been paid.

    So maybe she can just not pay. I don't know much about how that all works but simply not paying seems to be common enough.

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