Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
A second U.S. appeals court ruled Tuesday that the recording industry can’t force Internet providers to identify music downloaders under a disputed copyright law. The decision doesn’t significantly affect the industry’s continuing campaign to sue Internet users. The 2-1 ruling by the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis affirms another appeals court’s decision in Washington in December 2003. Both courts ruled against efforts by the Recording Industry Association of America, the trade organization for the largest labels, to compel Internet providers to identify customers accused of illegally distributing songs over the Internet. In the Missouri case, judges said that Charter Communications Inc., one of the nation’s largest Internet providers, wasn’t responsible for 93 of its customers allegedly trading 100,000 copyrighted music files across the Internet and shouldn’t have been compelled to identify them under the 1988 Digital Millennium Copyright Act. The appeals court said Charter’s role was “confined to acting as a conduit in the transfer of files through its network.” Since the earlier ruling, the music industry has filed civil lawsuits nationwide against “John Doe” defendants, based on their Internet addresses, then worked through the courts to learn their names. That process is more complicated — and more expensive — for the record labels. The RIAA said it will continue to sue thousands of people it accuses of illegally sharing music. “Our enforcement efforts won’t miss a beat,” spokesman Jonathan Lamy said. In a dissent, Circuit Judge Diana E. Murphy complained that the rulings prevent copyright holders from easily protecting their works and said repercussions were “too easily ignored or minimized.” She wrote that the industry’s practice of filing lawsuits against anonymous defendants was “cumbersome and expensive.” Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Benefits of a Digital Membership:

  • Free access to 1 article* every 30 days
  • Access to the entire ALM network of websites
  • Unlimited access to the ALM suite of newsletters
  • Build custom alerts on any search topic of your choosing
  • Search by a wide range of topics

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2021 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.