Thanks to Prof. Deirdre M. Smith of the University of Maine Law School, and the faculty advisor for its Cumberland Legal Aid Clinic, for bringing this law review note to my attention:
The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)’s lawsuit campaign against copyright-infringing file sharing is controversial. Many critics allege that this campaign is unfair and paint the RIAA as mean and a bully. Some critics even claim that the RIAA is subversive toward the rights of the public. At the same time, any file sharers continue to violate the distribution and reproduction rights of copyright holders, record labels, and artists, all who have justified expectations of payment for heir products.Complete article:
This Note examines the RIAA’s approach and alternative approaches to the file sharing problem, and proposes an integrated, comprehensive strategy for dealing with the problem of illegal file sharing. Part I provides a background on the RIAA and its opinions, the development of the RIAA lawsuits, the public backlash against these lawsuits, and the relevant law. Part II describes the challenges to be met by any solution to the file sharing problem, reviews a series of proposals for their strengths and weaknesses, and sets forth a strategy that balances the strengths of a number of previous proposals against each other’s weaknesses. This Note concludes with the assertion that the file sharing problem is solvable without wasteful, unpopular lawsuits or major changes to the law, provided that the music industry is willing to adapt to and take cues from the consuming public.
Reynolds, Daniel. Note. The RIAA litigation war on file sharing and alternatives more compatible with public morality. 9 Minn. J. L. Sci. & Tech. 977-1006 (2008).
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