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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

RIAA Caught Infringing

When in court, the RIAA attorneys explain the normally technically illiterate jury that if the industry obtained a “pirate” IP address, they have caught the infringer red handed.

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In other words, they believe that it’s impossible for an IP address to be spoofed and the pirate is banged to rights. After this the industry proceeds to demand outstanding amounts of cash from the “pirate”. According to this strategy, it isn’t bad if you or your staff aren’t caught out pirating using the same standard of proof you have established for others.

Earlier in December the media reported how, by analysing the IP addresses in some torrent swarm, the experts found links to the offices of the Recording Industry Association of America. It looks like while the music industry was frantically demanding the death penalty for illegal file-sharers, they have been downloading copies of TV programs illegally themselves. The Recording Industry Association of America, however, has an excuse: they claimed that the 6 IP addresses used for the unauthorized file-sharing was some 3rd-party vendor who unknowingly smeared the outfit’s good name.

The RIAA’s spokesman said during the interview to the press that those IP addresses are similar to block addresses assigned to the anti-piracy outfit, but they were used by a 3rd-party vendor to serve up the public site. He insisted that they weren’t used by the staff of the outfit to access the web at all.

As you can see, the question is one of faith: since the IP address is assigned to the Recording Industry Association of America, what mysterious 3rd party could be allowed to register a range of IP-addresses to the private company and, worse still, allow others to use those addresses? The industry experts believe that the RIAA, which sanctimoniously presumes to lecture others on their own network security, must have worked out that it was not such a good idea to let other people use your outfit’s IP addresses to surf the web.

The most interesting thing is that when over 20,000 people who were sued by the music industry over the years used the same excuse, claiming that someone else violated the law, they were simply told that this was impossible. Now the experts believe that if there are such cases with defendants using the “someone else did it” excuse, the legal team of the anti-piracy outfit would have to come up with some better rebuttal. 

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