updated 04:30 pm EDT, Thu October 2, 2008
EMI case dismissed
MP3Tunes announced on Thursday that the Recording Industry Association of America’s copyright infringement lawsuit against its CEO, Michael Robertson, was dismissed by New York District Judge William H. Pauley III. The lawsuit against MP3Tunes will proceed as planned, however. The lawsuit, headed up by EMI Music and 14 other music RIAA-supporting labels alleges that MP3Tunes infringed on copyrights as it offers an online music storage service, allowing users to upload their music collections and access them from virtually anywhere.
Robertson points out much larger companies offer similar services to his company’s, including AOL’s Xdrive, Microsoft’s Skydrive and BT’s The Vault. MP3Tunes was targeted because of its comparatively small size, he maintains, ensuring EMI an easier victory that would then be used to shut down similar services and "cripple consumers’ rights." The case will determine if customers can store their legally-obtained music online, in much the same way as they store other personal data in cloud services.
This ruling represents a second major setback for an RIAA member after the recent mistrial in the Jammie Thomas case. RIAA sued Jammie Thomas for $220,000, claiming she pirated 24 songs by making them available through the KaZaA file sharing service.