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July 26, 2005

Squeezing Blood From A Turnip In Kentucky

courier-journal: This story bothered me when I read it the first time, so I read it again to make sure I comprehended it correctly. Last month, 56 year old Michael Brown from Kentucky who describes himself as "almost deaf", received notice that the recording industry was suing him in federal court for allegedly trading copyrighted music illegally on the Internet. It's no surprise that his daughter was the culprit, but now Brown faces a tough choice...Pay thousands of dollars for a lawyer to fight the charges or pay thousands of dollars to settle with the recording industry. That choice hardly seems fair. To make the situation even harder to digest, Brown is a self-employed engraver who only earned $13K last year. The article also reports that several Louisville residents facing lawsuits said they feel unfairly singled out by claims they can't afford to challenge...Another suit was filed against a 65-year-old woman who is legally blind. Her grandchildren apparently used her computer two years ago...I think that parents and legal guardians should be held responsible for the actions of their children - but in some cases there should be exceptions. What do you think? Punishing the parents/guardians  does nothing to change the behavior of the actual downloaders...Jenni Engebretsen, a spokeswoman for the RIAA said the group will try to "reach a reasonable settlement" with defendants who claim the lawsuits pose a financial hardship...Yeah right, I'll believe that one when I see it...But blaming teenagers appears to be no excuse even for the handicapped. "Where there is evidence of infringement in a particular household," Engebretsen said, "there are consequences."

Posted by Todd in Piracy | Permalink


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