updated 03:55 pm EDT, Tue April 10, 2007
RIAA loses another case
The Recording Industry Association of America has lost another file-sharing lawsuit, this time in the case of Elektra v. Santangelo. Patti Santangelo was accused of illegal music sharing in 2005, but being unable to prove that Patti was responsible (directly or indirectly), the RIAA sued her children, who were 15 and 11 at the time.
All three cases have been dismissed by federal judge Colleen McMahon, and moreover, with prejudice -- giving Patti the option of recovering legal fees from her accusers. The RIAA filed a motion in late March for the case to be dismissed without prejudice, but failed, as McMahon argued that Patti should either be able to defend herself in court or receive remuneration.
The case marks the second defeat for the RIAA's policy of "secondary infringement," which states that if someone has a "reason to know" that infringing activity may be going on, they are liable regardless of whether they were actually aware. The first defeat was in the case of Capitol v. Foster, in which another judge called the policy "untested and marginal." [via Ars Technica]