A Los Angeles federal judge declined Aug. 24 to reverse a magistrate judge’s order requiring a file-sharing Web site to turn over a relatively unexploited kind of electronic discovery.

While it’s customary for e-mails and other documents to be dredged from computer memory during discovery, this may be the first request for information from transitory Random Access Memory, according to Fred Von Lohmann, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation. The EFF wrote an amicus brief protesting the request by plaintiffs — several movie studios including Columbia Pictures — to have defendant TorrentSpy turn over RAM information.