Sunday, January 04, 2009

Wall Street Journal confirms that RIAA dumped MediaSentry

The Wall Street Journal has obtained confirmation of the story previously mentioned by p2pnet.net that the RIAA has dropped MediaSentry:

RIAA Drops MediaSentry

By SARAH MCBRIDE

In another sign of the music industry's recently announced retreat from a five-year-old antipiracy strategy, the Recording Industry Association of America has dumped the company it used to help it gather evidence for mass lawsuits it filed against people it claimed were illegally uploading copyrighted music.

The RIAA long used a company called MediaSentry to troll the Internet in search of people who uploaded large amounts of music. The information that MediaSentry collected became an integral part of the RIAA's aggressive litigation campaign. Since 2003, the RIAA—a trade organization representing Vivendi SA's Universal Music Group, Sony Corp.'s Sony BMG Music Entertainment, EMI Group Ltd. and Warner Music Group Corp.—has sued around 35,000 people for what it says are illegal music uploads.

Now the RIAA will be rid of a company that became a frequent target of civil-rights advocates and others who complained that the RIAA's legal tactics were excessive. MediaSentry is a unit of closely held, Belcamp, Md.-based SafeNet Inc.
Complete article


Commentary & discussion:

p2pnet.net
FutureZone.orf.at (German)
Slashdot
Chronicle of Higher Education
TorrentFreak




Keywords: lawyer digital copyright law online internet law legal download upload peer to peer p2p file sharing filesharing music movies indie independent label freeculture creative commons pop/rock artists riaa independent mp3 cd favorite songs intellectual property portable music player

9 comments:

Shane said...

"In place of MusicSentry, the RIAA says it will use Copenhagen-based DtecNet Software ApS. The music industry had worked with DtecNet previously both in the U.S. and overseas, and liked its technology, said RIAA spokesman Jonathan Lamy."

I'll bet. I bet they also like the fact that DtecNet is out of easy enforcement of State and Federal US Laws regarding licensing of Private Investigators and for possible illegal unauthorized intrusion of consumers computers. Oh, and I'm sure discovery will be even harder with the RIAA's overseas vendor than it already is with the exceptionally recalcitrant Media Sentry.

Sebastien said...

Just because they're out of state. It doesn't mean they don't have to be licensed. TO me, this would mean that any thing based on an illegal discovery should be thrown out of court. MediaSentry and now Dtecnet's evidence should be thrown out of court.

That would fix this issue licketysplit.

itheresies said...

"In place of MusicSentry, the RIAA says it will use Copenhagen-based DtecNet Software ApS. The music industry had worked with DtecNet previously both in the U.S. and overseas, and liked its technology, said RIAA spokesman Jonathan Lamy."

So the RIAA is already paying a foreign company to spy on Americans internet usage in the USA? Isn't that in violation of some state or federal privacy legislation?

Albert said...

My understanding is the PARTIES are subject to the Court. If this new investigator does not comply with discovery orders or most anything else, it is clearly within the power of the Court to NOT allow the evidence to be used at ALL.

I wonder if all the existing cases that use MediaSentry evidence will be dropped as well, as they will no longer have an investigator to testify.

I also wonder if the state and federal computer intrusion laws can be enforced against the RIAA member companies, as the acts of intrusion are ONLY being done because of the direction of the Plaintiffs in these cases. Being criminal laws, doing such an act by hire would be an act of the principal themselves. Think like hiring a contract killer, doing so can get you a murder one rap.....

I also think there might be another reason they dumped MediaSentry... They finally realized themselves how technically inept they were, and how much the RIAA was duped as to their technical ability (Or LACK thereof.)

I am waiting for Capitol Records v. Jammie Thomas to be dropped, as a retrial is tough without testimony from MediaSentry......

Albert

MicrosoftHater said...

If the RIAA's contract with Media Sentry is typical, then I suspect that the RIAA has access to any people it needs for onging cases. It just doesn't send MS any new business.

So don't hold your breathe that old law suits will be dropped.

Albert said...

While it is true that MS might be required by contract to continue support, I do not think they will by any means give it their all, since they know they are not getting any more business.

Also, the reasons they were fired, and the shortcomings of their methods are clearly proper cross exam topics. I also wonder if the contracts can now come in, since they no longer can be considered a trade secret since MS is no longer currently engaged.

Albert

Alter_Fritz said...

LOL @ Post January 5, 2009 3:34:00 AM EST

What is that, do the pyramid sheme scammers already hope for new gullible people from the content industry?
Given that they have hired MediaSentry,BayTSB and the likes in the past, and now even paying a company in Copenhagen
(That is Copenhagen in Europe, not in New York, in case they did not know and Danish courts have ruled that Danish ISPs must filter the internet so companies and people in Denmark can not reach the world biggest piracy place)
that is legally not even able to do investigations for them since the country is blocked, I guess pyramidshemes in making money are adequate joboffers these days!

(But not in the comment section on RIvTP!)
Spamming morons!

Shane said...

" MicrosoftHater said...

If the RIAA's contract with Media Sentry is typical, then I suspect that the RIAA has access to any people it needs for onging cases. It just doesn't send MS any new business.

So don't hold your breathe that old law suits will be dropped"


It is true that the RIAA may not drop the cases--they never let the lack of evidence or lack of a case influence their decision whether to continue a case. But as Ray has pointed out, defense now gets to ask Media Sentry why they were fired--goes to credibility. Oh, and there is the small matter of Media Sentry personnel possibly being subject to arrest for illegally conducting private investigations without the required licenses in multiple states.

But, I wouldn't be surprised if the RIAA continues to file identical cases in the future, with only the name of the "investigator" changed. They haven't promised not to sue people. Heck, they still won't say that it is legal for people to transfer songs from CDs to their iPod!

Anonymous said...

I had a conversation with Michigan's DLEG today. The investigator in charge of the three cases sent to him (Kruger, Central Michigan University and U of Michigan) has made his recommendation and has forwarded it to his supervisors.

His quote was… "It seems to me everyone should comply with the law. I don't feel MediaSentry has done so as suggested in my investigation."

He seems like a very honest and fair guy. We will have to see what his supervisors do with his report. RK