The trial of the century — Capitol Records, et al v. Jammie Thomas — is coming to a close, with the Jury having just been sent in for deliberations. The case, which is the first Recording Industry Association of America case to make it to trial, all hinges on whether or not Jammie was the one using her Kazaa handle to share 1,700 files. The suit actually has been boiled down to a mere 24 MP3 files, but the RIAA claims they deserve $US150,000 per song. What planet are you living on, RIAA?
While Jammie's argument that some 1337 h4X0r was sitting in a tree outside her window and using her Kazaa account without her knowledge is a pretty weak one, the real insanity in the case is that number. What math did they use to make that number up? As Buchanan says, "I'd find her guilty and then assign a penalty of 24 cents, a penny for every track at issue." Wouldn't that set a precedent that would neuter the RIAA's lawsuits by devaluing the very product they claim is so ludicrously valuable? It seems to me that her argument as to being innocent isn't exactly watertight, but in the end the real decision will be made on how much the jury awards the RIAA. And I can't really imagine any sensible jury thinking sharing 24 MP3s is really worth $US3.6 million. Stay tuned, we'll keep you updated. [Threat Level]