US Copyright Group, a District of Columbia-based venture backed by attorneys, has filed federal lawsuits against at least 14,000 John Doe defendants who allegedly downloaded independent movies from peer-to-peer file-sharing site BitTorrent. "Experts liken the lawsuits to those filed by the Recording Industry Association of America, which has sued at least 30,000 people since 2003 for music piracy and earlier this month asked a judge to shut down the file-sharing site LimeWire. Napster, another file-sharing Web site, previously settled a piracy lawsuit with the RIAA for nearly $300 million." As you might recall, the RIAA lawsuits were a PR disaster and failed to slow unlawful music downloads, even though the RIAA is a "real" organization, as opposed to one formed by attorneys to pursue litigation.
Each weekend, E-Commerce Law Briefs provides a brief summary and commentary on recent legal news affecting e-commerce businesses.