Do RIAA lawsuits help sell music?

Six months after the RIAA promised to stop suing music sharers, it obtained a $1.92 million judgment against Jammie Thomas-Rasset, a single mother living in Minnesota who denied the charges, in a jury trial in a Federal court in Minnesota.

Thomas-Rasset was appealing a previous judgment of $222,000 that was tossed out after the judge declared a mistrial in the case. After the judgment had been issued, the judge declared the $222,000 fine was too harsh.

She was defended by Kiwi Camara and Joe Sibley of Camara & Sibley, according to reports.

“We appreciate the jury’s service and that they take this as seriously as we do. We are pleased that the jury agreed with the evidence and found the defendant liable. Since day one, we have been willing to settle this case and we remain willing to do so,” said RIAA spokeswoman Cara Duckworth in a statement.

The RIAA claims to negotiating in good faith, with the law on its side. But a previous amnesty was called deceptive. Others who claimed innocence said that the RIAA never investigated their counter-claims.

Whether or not suing single parents and schools is good business practice, the music industry is still searching for an online business model. While the music industry has sued to block the airing of free videos on Google’s YouTube in Germany and the UK, Google has managed to offer free, ad-supported music downloads in China.

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