Skip to comments.Single mom can't pay $1.5M song-sharing fine
Posted on 11/05/2010 4:23:36 PM PDT by paudio
A federal jury found Wednesday that Jammie Thomas-Rasset, of Brainerd, must pay $62,500 per song for a total of $1.5 million for illegally violating copyrights on 24 songs. This was the third jury to consider damages in her case, and each has found that she must pay though different amounts. And after each time, the single mother of four has said she can't pay. "I can't afford to pay any amount. It's not a matter of won't, it's a matter of 'I can't,'" Thomas-Rasset said Thursday. "Any amount that I pay to them is money that I could use to feed my children. Any amount that I pay to them is money I could use to clothe my kids, and pay my mortgage so my kids have a place to sleep."
(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...
Hey, she's a single mom, toss all credibility for responsible living out the window anyway.
Zero sympathy for her here.
If only she had heard of Usenet. Or Freenet. Or Tor. Or..or..
Maybe Olberman can help her.
“Any amount that I pay to them is money that I could use to feed my children. Any amount that I pay to them is money I could use to clothe my kids, and pay my mortgage so my kids have a place to sleep.”
Wasn’t too worded about that when you were downloading all of those tunes.
And I have no sympathy for the RIAA. That organization has been known to follow kids home from school making threats that they were going to take their homes.
I hope they don’t get a dime.
It's possible that she's a widow or her husband abandoned her. Admittedly, it's not likely, but it's possible.
Yep, SSL over Usenet and the RIAA can suck it.
Congress has the power to issue copyrights. Is the remedy only federal? And should it be so draconian?
Stealing is wrong. Even/especially if it is intellectual property. But $62K/song? That seems like over-reach.
Does the fine make the complaintant whole?
I'm not happy with the outcome here, on either end. 30 days in jail for the perp, and restitution should suffice.
she needs a bailout. where are the Dems?
So does she have to be married in order to pay it?
Sorry, but a 1.5 million dollar fine for downloading songs off the internet is ridiculous.
And if she just shoplifted the CD.....
Crazy world...stay safe !
Hope yer well.
The song people don’t want the money anyway, they just want to scare the bejeebers out of others who might do the same thing.
What makes a song worth $62,500?
Awwwww...she broke the law.
She KNEW she was breaking the law.
She didn’t care.
Now she cares.
It doesn't matter. If my dog takes a crap and I say that crap is worth $5 million dollars and you steal it...you owe me $5 million.
That would be "widow" or "abandoned wife" not "single mother".
It's not splitting hairs it's just proper logic.
It’s not about her. Setting damages she can’t possibly pay and has to appeal shows that this is makework for the lawyers.
And if she just shoplifted the CD.....
Exactly. The fine should be what she would’ve paid if she’d bought 24 cd’s, about $400. Although she might also be responsible for the legal costs.
I did all that on speculation, and was never paid a dime for the hours. So I own the product (IP). I'm not releasing it until I'm happy with the situation.
And the guys that want it are acting squirrelly.
I don't have the option of suing. So I'm not releasing. But I don't expect more than the product is worth, regardless of how I collect.
The "living/breathing" part.
Yeah, the raii treats the artist who wrote the song poorly too, so my sympathy for them is thin. And the attorneys are way overpaid (I should know, I am one, believe me, get a female, we work harder and the men are arrogant and overpaid) I agree with the guy who said charge her 2.50 a song. $150 court costs and be done with it.
That's the makings of a GREAT rap tune just waiting to be stolen via the Internet.
bingo, not makework, make $$$$$$$
If you play a CD in your car and you have passengers, you owe the record company a penalty for the passengers hearing the song.
Not sure why people would pay anything to download a bunch of crap music. Buy a kazoo and learn to whistle.
Don't blame the passengers, ban speaker manufacturers and the legal ownership of them!
The ridiculousness of the fine is a form of bullying to make “an example” of her. I think the price per song on itune is reasonable, and I have been thinking of buying a couple hundred songs for a while. However, just the thought that I would direcly or indirectly be rewarding the music industry bullies and their shameful tactics have so far kept me on the side line. The hateful nastiness of the political speach of most artists does not make me feel like contributing to their well-being either.
While, stealing is wrong and such. And I am not sure what her being a single mother has to do with this story. I feel this is a violation of her Constitutional right. The Eigth Admendment. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted. I feel that 1.5 million to pay for illegally downloading songs is extremely excessive, especially when they particular person may never earn that amount in their entire life. If I stole 20 CDs, and was prosecuted, I seriously doubt that would be the punishment I face.
I am with you on this one. IF she shoplifted the CD how much of a fine would she have received? This is way too much of a fine. This is just beyond belief.
That was the original intent but people who illegally download music look at these judgements the same way that drivers look at car crashes; everyone does it but occasionally bad things happen to a small few. Those are the chances one takes. Verdicts like this aren't stopping downloading.
In fact, I've read the RIAA has stopped pursuing legal action towards individual downloaders and is now strategizing to go after the deeper pockets of ISPs.
Stealing is wrong! She stole the songs and now nobody else can hear them, right?
But 62K per song is over-reach.
On as side note, iTunes are scum. They refuse to cooperate with me or with the police to give us the addy that downloaded songs or whatever using my credit card number. They are of the opinion it’s not worth it and they can write it off. Excuse me, I’m the one wanting to press charges, not them. It’s my bill the charges showed up on. But hey, they don’t care. They might lose that criminal as a customer if they cooperate with the cops. Good to know that all of you are paying more for your downloads for all the countless times they’ve “written it off” in other incidences.
I will NEVER use iTunes. Never did before and certainly won’t now.
The Federal Reserve is coming to her aid with QE 2. By the time hyperinflation kicks in, she won't have a problem paying the fine.
People don't use that much logic anymore. Since the year I was born, my mother was a widow, and people were always referring to her as a single mother.
Now that’s funny!
The RIAA sucks. Also, the Mom shouldn’t have been sharing songs. Regardless, the RIAA should be concerned about flushing their goodwill down the john by suing single moms for sharing songs.
Before anyone asks/accuses, I purchase lots of digital music and video content from iTunes. Why? I could download it for for free, but I appreciate the convenience of being able to buy from any of my iOS devices when I want. I feel that the $0.99 is worth it for the convenience and legality.
Someone could take my recent IP and use it, it would still be available to me, but they wouldn't have to pay me for my efforts. Is that right?
I think not. I'm going to hold the IP and protect it and only release it on my terms.
You don't like the terms, don't sign on. I did too much work on it to give it away, unless I release it under a GNU licence. And I don't want to do that right now.
My daughter is a songwriter. That is part of how she earns a living. Theft of anything is wrong. She should be charged what it normally costs per song and possibly a small fine, not some exorbitant figure that makes lawyers and RIAA richer.
That's totally insane! I couldn't see charging her more than what it would have cost to buy them on iTunes. Glad they never caught me... Back when I might have downloaded media, I would have had to pay around $93 million at those rates.... LOL
Makes me wanna' go out and violate some music copyrights, or maybe just not spending any money on music DVDs.
Then those pukes wonder what happened to their business ~ could be the advertising and their misuse of the courts for otherwise trivial violations that certainly do not call for this level of brutality.
I'd look for jurors being paid off by the plaintiff. It's simply not possible to find a jury that could be unanimous in a situation like this ~ someone would see what an abuse of public institutions these show trials are, and would simply not vote for conviction.
Frankly, we should be more concerned with the obvious ease with which slick shyster lawyers are able to subvert the judicial system to abuse a poor woman with several young children.
There should be somebody horsewhipped here ~ the judge? Perhaps the lawyers? An RIAA puke? Maybe some recording company executives? No doubt this is a target rich environment.
>”It doesn’t matter. If my dog takes a crap and I say that crap is worth $5 million dollars and you steal it...you owe me $5 million. “
Actually, no. Not at all the case. Probably just a bad analogy, though.
I’m going to go ahead and side with the people who are saying that $62,500 for downloading an mp3 is ridiculous. The law may be the law, but I think it is fair to point out the absurdity of the situation. Especially since we have many stupid laws on the books.
On the one hand, I NEVER downloaded any copyrighted material, by stealing it for free.
On the other hand, “the Internet is different crowd” joined forces with ignorant and illiterate Libertarians and Liberals in the pretense that just because technology makes it possible, it must be allowed and accepted in what ever fashion it is functioning, who joined forces with pseudo Conservatives to de-facto legalize theft by doing nothing about it, under the misguided notion that NOTHING about the Internet can be regulated.
The political class has not banned the ‘downloading’ activity nor have they passed laws to actively go after all the sites that - if its really “illegal” - are operating illegally, the same way that a “community garage” stocked with stolen goods is an illegal operation.
Unless the political class is going to actively work to prevent and stop the Internet businesses that provide the activity this woman was allowed to do, with laws to that affect, this woman should have to pay nothing.
I went to MCI and never went back. Along the way I told everybody that AT&T was in cahoots with the criminal class so don't trust them.
BTW, AT&T is still in cahoots with the criminal class so don't trust them.