Kaaza being sued

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  • Andrew Pratt
    Moderator Emeritus
    • Aug 2000
    • 16507

    Kaaza being sued

    Anyone else see this as a potential to set a dangerous precident?

    Kazaa Music-Swapper Goes to Court
    World (Nov. 26, 2002 - 06:56)

    LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A federal judge has signaled his support for a bid by record companies and movie studios to sue the parent company of Kazaa, a popular online file-swapping service.

    U.S. District Judge Stephen Wilson heard arguments Monday on whether Sharman Networks Ltd., which is headquartered in Australia and incorporated in the Pacific Island nation of Vanuatu, is subject to U.S. copyright laws.

    "It is a difficult question, but it has to be resolved," Wilson said. "The court will do its best to resolve it promptly."

    Although Wilson did not indicate when he plans to issue a ruling, he appeared to tip his hand, noting that he "would be inclined to find there's jurisdiction against Sharman."

    "I find the argument about providing the service to so many California residents compelling," Wilson said, referring to the plaintiffs' claims that Kazaa provides free access to copyrighted music and films to some 21 million users in the United States. The company has advertising revenue of about $4 million.

    The Sharman case is one of the largest in the recent copyright wars testing the international reach of U.S. courts. If Wilson decides Sharman can be sued, the company would be thrust into the same legal predicament that has stymied popular swapping services such as Napster and Aimster.

    David Casselman, an attorney representing Sharman, said holding the online swapping company liable for copyright violations would be akin to prosecuting a computer manufacturer for the actions of computer hackers.

    David Kendall, an attorney representing six movie studios, including Disney, Fox and Paramount, said the fact that Sharman's product is available in this country is sufficient cause to face trial in a U.S. court.

    "It does not violate due process to have them stand here to answer for their conduct," Kendall said.

    Sharman attorney Rod Dorman countered that such a move could open a door for a judge in "communist China" to rule against U.S. companies that operate online. The judge did not appeared swayed by the argument.

    "I'll take my chances with that judge in communist China," Wilson quipped.

    Carey Ramos, an attorney representing song writers and music publishers, said the judge's comments would send a message to those companies seeking to operate offshore.

    "This is important because it shows that you cannot escape U.S. justice by setting up shop outside the United States," Ramos said.




  • David Meek
    Moderator Emeritus
    • Aug 2000
    • 8938

    #2
    Yeah Andrew, this could be the proverbial Pandora's box. The entertainment companies are getting scary in the lengths they'll go to get what they want.




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    • woodman
      Junior Member
      • Sep 2002
      • 8

      #3
      I don't believe what I'm reading here! You two sincerely believe that the downloading of copyrighted intellectual property over the internet without the approval of the owner of the material is not only OK but shouldn't be challenged?

      I'm a staunch and very vocal advocate for "fair use rights" but what Napster did and what this new upstart KaZaa is doing falls waaaaaaaay short of "fair use". It's outright theft is what it really is, and should be stopped through our justice system if we have any hope whatsoever of maintaining our real "fair use rights". I deplore the efforts of the movie studios to try to classify all of us as lawbreakers - trying to rip them off of their rightful profits ... that's one huge pile of dinosaur dung. But these internet "file-sharers" as they like to call themselves are another matter entirely, and I cannot in good conscience support them in any way, shape, or form. I'm surprised to say the least that you view this judicial decision as "alarming" and "setting a dangerous precedent". Really? How so? An enquiring mind would like to know.




      woodman
      woodman

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      • Lex
        Moderator Emeritus
        • Apr 2001
        • 27461

        #4
        Well, David is actually right, they will go to any length, including tracking people down by user to college dormatories which I have heard of being done. I do believe there are lines they shouldn't be able to cross myself. That's not saying I think it's right to "take their property", nor am I endorsing Kazza. But I put that kind of tracking right in the same boat with Microsoft wanting to keep track of your every move on a computer and if they had their way,causing a user to have to re-register every time they boot up. (potentially)

        Myself, I never used Napster, and never used Kazza. I buy my movies and music, so I don't care any more about Kazza than I did Napster. But I don't want to see serial numbered CD-Rs either and if the music companies had their way, CD-R would be outlawed. In short, I think their are extremes both ways.

        While we all have opinions, let's just be respectful of one another's opinions even if we disagree-

        Lex
        Doug
        "I'm out there Jerry, and I'm loving every minute of it!" - Kramer

        Comment

        • Andrew Pratt
          Moderator Emeritus
          • Aug 2000
          • 16507

          #5
          Woodman I actually tend to side with you more then you might think. What I'm nervous about though is the precident of a US court impossing its laws on people outside it boarders. As the artical says if this were to go though what would stop China from trying the same thing with US sites or software? Its not the goal its the methods that I'm more worried about.

          the other issue I have is that as we've seen when they shut napster down there will just be another to step up and take its place so I'm not sure its the best tactic. There's obviously demand out there for such a service so why not try to address that in some more acceptable way?




          Comment

          • George Bellefontaine
            Moderator Emeritus
            • Jan 2001
            • 7637

            #6
            I agree with Woodman to a degree, but what Andrew and Lex says is the real concern here. I am all for artists getting their royalties, and like Lex I buy all my music, but the thought of anyone out there tampering with my privacy just makes my blood boil.




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            • Andrew Pratt
              Moderator Emeritus
              • Aug 2000
              • 16507

              #7
              An interesting study backing up what a lot of us have been saying for some time now.






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