Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a Minnesota mother of four is being penalized for illegally downloading and sharing 24 songs on the peer-to-peer file-sharing network Kazaa in 2006, but how much she owes the record labels has been in question. The jury in her third trial has just ruled that Thomas-Rasset should pay Capitol Records $1.5 million.
The record industry has repeatedly sought to set examples of illegal downloaders and has cracked down hard time and again. Last year a student in Boston was fined $ 675,000 and in 2003 a 12 year old was sued by a record company downloading illegally.
THey have alse been cracking down on the Supply side of the process. But progress has been unable to keep up with the innovation of netizens. Kazaa for instance is a now defunct service and even the technology but is based on is now out dated. Another peer-to-peer file sharing network, Limewire was also shut down last week but even that move happened after Limewire was relegated to dinosaur status in the music downloading world.
Many services like Apple’s I-tunes provide cheaper alternatives for people who want to legally buy music but by and large most of the music being downloaded off the net is free and illegal.