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How much is a song worth? See below for price details…
05:55 AM Jun 20, 2009
MINNEAPOLIS (Minnesota) - A United States jury on Thursday ordered a 32-year-old woman to pay nearly US$2 million ($2.9 million) in damages for illegally downloading 24 songs over the Internet in a high-profile digital piracy case.
Ms Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a single mother of four from the Minnesota town of Brainerd, was found liable of violating music copyrights for using the Kazaa peer-to-peer file-sharing network to download the songs.
The jury ordered Ms Thomas-Rasset to pay US$1.92 million ($2.8 million) - or US$80,000 per song - to six record companies: Capitol Records, Sony BMG Music, Arista Records, Interscope Records, Warner Bros Records and UMG Recordings.
In his closing arguments, attorney Timothy Reynolds said Ms Thomas-Rasset had made copyrighted music available to "millions on the Internet" through Kazaa.
Ms Thomas-Rasset said that her former husband or her children may have downloaded the music but her arguments apparently did not sway the jury.
Ms Thomas-Rasset had been convicted previously, in October 2007, and ordered to pay US$220,000 in damages but the judge who presided over that trial threw out the verdict, calling it "wholly disproportionate" and "oppressive".
Describing the $1.92 million figure as "kind of ridiculous", Ms Thomas-Rasset said: "There's no way they're ever going to get that. I'm a mom, limited means, so I'm not going to worry about it now."
The case was filed by the Recording Industry Association of America, which has sued some 35,000 people for online music piracy since 2003. Most of those sued agreed to settlements of between US$3,000 and US$5,000. AGENCIES
From TODAY, World – Weekend, 20/21-Jun-2009; see the source article here.