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October 05, 2007

Jammie Thomas

Jammie Thomas has lost the first case against music file sharing to actually come in front of a US court.

A single mother has been ordered to pay $220,000 (£110,000) to the music industry after losing a test case trial in which she had illegally downloading songs from the internet.

A jury in Minnesota ordered Jammie Thomas, 30, to pay an alliance of six major record companies $9,250 for each of 24 songs for which they sought damages. They could have awarded damages as low as $750 per song.

Thomas, a Native American and mother of two, made legal history by becoming the first of 26,000 people sued by the Recording Industry Association of America over alleged use of filesharing software to take the case to court.

The NY Times take on the Jammie Thomas case:

The verdict against Jammie Thomas of Brainerd, Minn., brought an end to the first jury trial in the music industry’s protracted effort to rein in piracy with lawsuits against individual computer users. Since 2003, record labels have brought legal action against about 30,000 people, accusing them of trafficking in copyrighted songs.

Many of the people sued in such cases settle out of court for, on average, about $4,000, according to the industry’s trade association. Ms. Thomas chose to face trial instead, saying that she did not share files on the Kazaa network as the labels contended. She and her lawyer declined to comment after leaving the courthouse.

The jury verdict, which called for $9,250 in damages for each of the 24 songs involved in the trial, came after brief deliberations.

AFP's take on the matter:

And the Star Tribune from Jammie's home state:

October 5, 2007 in Music | Permalink

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Comments

200.000, yeah, sure, as if hundreds of people what have bought those songs if it wasn't for Jammie Thomas. his is so unbelievable, ruining a young mother for something nobody has been hurt with...

Posted by: Bjoern | Oct 6, 2007 1:11:53 PM

This is unbelievable. I've never illegally downloaded before but I might start getting interested and do it now, just out of spite.

Posted by: jameshigham | Oct 7, 2007 2:49:29 PM

The industry rep said it was to "set an example," i.e., to scare others into not repeating Jammie's "offense." That's the typical action of a bully: they can't close the floodgates of the inevitable tidal wave of downloads, so they pick off a few vulnerable individuals. The finger to those industry pricks, who for decades have ruthlessly exploited the talented artists who made them rich. I for one hope they DO suffer economic ruin for their short-sighted heartlessness.

Posted by: engelbach | Oct 8, 2007 10:34:25 PM

This is quite unbelieveable bros. i wish i had that much money, $222000 would buy so much of the best pot from philly, i would be baked for daysssssssss.

Posted by: Mr. Scholtz | Oct 16, 2007 1:15:56 PM