RIAA Files Hundreds Of Lawsuits Against File Traders

The Recording Industry

Association of America filed hundreds of lawsuits against consumers who engage

in file sharing, accusing individuals of illegally downloading and sharing copyrighted


The lawsuits, which

numbered 261, were filed in courts around the country by the RIAA, who represents

Sony, EMI, BMG, Universal Music and Warner Music. The RIAA said this was the

first wave of lawsuits, which could number into the thousands.

“Nobody likes

playing the heavy and having to resort to litigation,” RIAA president Cary

Sherman said in a statement. “But when your product is being regularly

stolen, there comes a time when you have to take appropriate action.”

The individuals

smacked with lawsuits in the first wave were sharing on average of 1,000 files.

The RIAA is offering

amnesty to file traders, if they delete any downloaded music on their computers

and agree to never participate in file sharing again.

Copyright laws

call for fines of up to $150,000 per song illegally downloaded on a persons