A federal jury today ordered a Boston University graduate student to pay four record labels $675,000 in damages for illegally downloading 30 songs and sharing them online, in only the second such lawsuit to go to trial.
The jury could have ordered him to pay as much as $150,000 for each of the 30 songs at issue in the lawsuit, or $4.5 million.
The Recording Industry Association of America issued a statement praising the jury's "recognition of the impact of illegal downloading on the music community. We appreciate that Mr. Tenenbaum finally acknowledged that artists and music companies deserve to be paid for their work."
Full story: www.boston.com
"We appreciate that Mr. Tenenbaum finally acknowledged that artists and music companies deserve to be paid for their work."
Care to do the math with me?
It costs 99¢
to download a song * 30
songs = $29.70
, the value of the songs.
But, he also shared the files, so for a verdict of ($675,000 - $29.70) / .99
.... he must have allowed the files to be downloaded over 681,780
times. That is, if we were talking about a reasonable value for each of the songs.
If he had been caught stealing a rake from his neighbor, he would have to pay the neighbor $10 for the cost of the rake, not a possible $5,000,000. It's amazing how the same rules don't apply to music and movies.