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Date: 08-01-2009 Case Style: Capital Records, Inc. et al v. Joel Tannenbaum Case Number: 1:03-cv-11661-NG Judge: Nancy Gertner Court: United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, Suffolk County Plaintiff's Attorney: Eve Burton, Holme Roberts & Owen LLP, Denver, Colorado and Daniel Cloherty, Dwyer & Collora LLP, Boston, Massachusetts Defendant's Attorney: Charles Nesson, The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School , Cambridge, Massachustts Description: Answerthink, Inc., Arista Records, Inc., BMG Music, Capital Records, Inc., Capitol Records, Inc., Elektra Entertainment Group Inc., Fonovisa, Inc., Motown Record Company, L.P., Recording Industry Association of America, Sony Music Entertainment Inc., Sony Music Entertainment Inc., UMG Recordings, Inc., Virgin Records America, Inc., Atlantic Recording Corporation sued Joel Tanenbaum for violating the Copyright Act by downloading 30 songs with permission to do so. The RIAA has issued about 30,000 lawsuits during its nearly 6-year-old litigation campaign against file sharers. Most have settled out of court for a few thousand dollars. Plaintiffs sought $150,000 per track in damages but offered to settle for in 2005 for $3,000. Defendant sought to assert the fair-use doctrine as a defense but was barred from doing so by the Court on Plaintiffs' motion to strike the defense. Outcome: Plaintiffs' verdict for $675,000. Plaintiff's Experts: Defendant's Experts: Comments: Editor's Note: The RIAA can win battles like this but it is losing the war. It has been reported that the recording industry has filed 30,000 cases like this which it typically settles for around $3,000. The cases cost much more than $3,000 to file and administer. The goal, of course, is to try to convince people that they should not illegally download copyright protected music. It is unlikely, in my opinion, that litigation will ever significantly reduce illegal file sharing of music or stop the loss of revenues being experienced by the music industry as a result of the technological changes that make it possible to share music files. ________________________________________ Ktheryn Coggan is most definitely an attorney for the plaintiff record companies, in fact she may have taken the place of Richard Gabriel in heading this effort Also the law firm, Holme Roberts & Owen and perhaps the RIAA are making plenty of money settling these case – a small fraction get filed in court with boilerplate pleadings and a still smaller fraction get to a default judgment. What’s not clear is how the individual record label are benefiting. As for the artists I don’t think anyone thinks they benefit. Ted Fletcher