Excellent news folks http://recordingindustryvspeople.blogspot.com/2007/06/riaa-ex-parte-discovery-application.html
The RIAA's ex parte motion to compel the University of New Mexico to disclose the identities of its students has been denied, in the District Court of New Mexico, by Magistrate Judge Lorenzo F. Garcia, in Capitol v. Does 1-16.
The Judge ruled that there was no reason for the motion to be ex parte, reasoning as follows:
Plaintiffs contend that unless the Court allows ex parte immediate discovery, they will be irreparably harmed. While the Court does not dispute that infringement of a copyright results in harm, it requires a Coleridgian “suspension of disbelief” to accept that the harm is irreparable, especially when monetary damages can cure any alleged violation. On the other hand, the harm related to disclosure of confidential information in a student or faculty member’s Internet files can be equally harmful.
As the Plaintiffs do not presently know the identity of the Defendants, there is no reasonable way to ensure that those prospective Defendants are given notice or even an opportunity to respond in opposition to the request for disclosure. Rather, Plaintiffs seek to obtain information directly from the University of New Mexico. Plaintiffs propose that the University will be able to notify subscribers that a subpoena was served. However, the Court needs to ensure that subscribers actually receive notification and are given a reasonable opportunity to intervene in order to stop the disclosure of sensitive information.
If other Judges take up this trend of ensuring in each case that the RIAA's claims are valid/true then I think we could see an end to the abuse of the legal process they currently operate.
Lets be honest its a fact that congress should have acted to stop this abuse and has not done so to ensure they receive donations from the billionaire companies at the heart of the recording industry, It has taken one Judge to merely read the stated claim and see its invalid in its claims, whilst the judge agreed there was some harm to the RIAA it was at no time irreparable in fact the RIAA themselves always threaten to litigate for financial penalties so they have made the case for the Judges decision themselves.
Our thanks Judge Lorenzo F. Garcia, justice is at last seen to be done.