Tuesday, October 11, 2005

RIAA: The New Mafia?

[infowarrior] - RIAA Takes Shotgun to Traders

Hundreds of people are being wrongly sued by the Recording Industry Association of America for illegally trading music online, legal experts say.

Attorneys representing some of the 14,000 people targeted for illegal music trading say their clients are being bullied into settling as the cheapest way to get out of trouble. Collection agencies posing as "settlement centers" are harassing their clients to pay thousands of dollars for claims about which they know nothing, they say.

Last week a judge in Michigan dismissed a file-sharing case against Candy Chan, a mother who testified in court that the user name identified in the suit belonged to one of her children.

In the court report (.pdf), Judge Lawrence P. Zatkoff wrote: "Chan opposed the motion and asserted that the plaintiffs used a 'shotgun' approach to pursue this action, threatening to sue all of Chan's children and engaging in abusive behavior to attempt to utilize the court as a collection agency."

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