There’s a big court decision about to come down soon that could determine if having songs on your computer is considered copyright infringement. Last year in Duluth, Minnesota, a woman named Jammie Thomas was found liable for copyright infringement for songs she downloaded off Kazaa and the RIAA found about it. Her penalty was $222,000 for 24 songs. Now, however, the judge who resided over the case Michael Davis said that he the instructions he gave to the jury might be wrong because of a federal district-course case in Phoenix that determined that merely having songs on your computer available for download is not considered copyright violation. Because of that, Jammie Thomas might be granted a new trial. If this happens, expect record labels to work harder to prove that computer users had intent to share files. They’ll also bitch and cry some more and push even further for an internet tax for downloading media.
What’s hurting Jammie Thomas is that she says someone hacked into her computer and put the songs on her computer. Sigh.. fuckin idiot. The judge will decide by the end of September if he’ll grant a new trial.