Monday, August 04, 2008 reports that Judge Davis indicated he is likely to declare a mistrial in Capitol v. Thomas

According to a report by, Judge Davis indicated he is likely to grant a mistrial in Capitol v. Thomas.

Judge Hints at Mistrial in RIAA v. Jammie Thomas
By David Kravets August 04, 2008 | 2:20:01

DULUTH, Minnesota -- The federal judge who presided over the nation's only peer-to-peer, copyright infringement trial announced from the bench here Monday he is likely to declare a mistrial.

U.S. District Judge Michael Davis called attorneys for defendant Jammie Thomas and the Recording Industry Association of America to his courtroom here Monday, where a 70-minute hearing was held.

Davis opened the hearing referencing his May order in which he suggested a mistrial might be in order. The President Clinton appointee said he may have committed a "manifest error" when he instructed the Thomas jury in October that the Minnesota mother is liable for the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted works using the peer-to-peer file sharing service Kazaa "regardless of whether actual distribution has been shown."

The judge's decision, in which he said would be issued "hopefully before the end of September," is likely to have wide-ranging implications in the RIAA's file-sharing litigation campaign –- 20,000 lawsuits and counting. Most cases have settled out of court for a few thousand dollars and had never broached the topic of whether the RIAA must prove copyright violations – a technological impossibility.
Complete article

August 4, 2008, minute entry

Commentary & discussion:
Bloomberg News (via Contra Costa Times)
Northland's News Center
Minnesota Public Radio
Ars Technica
Chronicle of Higher Education
C/Net Asia
Heise Online (German)

Keywords: 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


Anonymous said...

At long last, a bit of light and hope at the end of a very long and dark tunnel! Finally starting to see some sane, rational thinking and proper applications of the law as was meant to be from day one....years ago. How many people have suffered as a direct result of the RIAA's madness? And to the RIAA I say this, it is the beginning of your end.


Anonymous said...

I'm left wondering just how many times the RIAA has cited this, their only - now tainted - court victory to insist on the correctness of their cause.

I'm also left wondering how that room temperature jury now feels about what they did.


Alter_Fritz said...

of course heise is reporting it too!
(In case you missed it since they have no backlink to you this time to you noticing visitors from there Ray)