Tuesday, September 11, 2012

8th Circuit upholds constitutionality of $9250-per-work statutory damages in Capitol v Thomas


In Capitol Records v. Jammie Thomas-Rasset, the US Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit:

-held that the award of $222,000, or $9250 per song, is not an unconstitutional violation of due process, and
-did not reach the "making available" issue.

Decision of US Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit

Commentary & discussion:

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Ray Beckerman, PC

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

crazy, just crazy. The actual economic loss is what $1.99 per song? Let's say it was intentional, why not triple it like the patent law. $2 x 24 x 3 approx. $150. The figure of 9k per song is complete BS.

Anonymous said...

I still don't understand the court's ruling on statutory damages. At face value, the cost of the song on iTunes exceeds the actual lost money -- which is to say, the only download shown was (presumably) the one time when the defendant got the file in the first place. Any uploads are a matter of speculation, excepting perhaps the one to the MPAA investigators. So we're still looking at evidence that shows, at most, 2 copies being made. All other evidence is purely speculative ... without serious statistical work, one cannot assume too much about other uploads.

And one *can* do such serious statistical/experimental work, if one is motivated. And yet the RIAA never did. It sounds like a load of nonsense to say that statutory damages are necessary because we can't calculate actual damages because we never tried!

Ray Beckerman said...

I find the Court's reasoning to be superficial and wrong, and the result absurd.