Press Releases: August 2003
On Wednesday, August 25, the SCO Group Inc. announced plans to sue individual Linux users who decline to pay it a $700 license fee. "Suing consumers in order to speed-up resolution of SCO's lawsuit against IBM is completely unjustifiable," said EFF Staff Attorney Jason Schultz. "SCO should prove its legal claims against IBM and Red Hat before it turns consumers into collateral damage. SCO should not wield the threat of litigation to extract licensing fees from consumers when it's not at all clear that it has any legal right to do so."
A Massachusetts district court blocked the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) from using a single court in Washington, D.C., to issue subpoenas for Massachusetts students' identities. "The court rejected the RIAA's bald-faced attempt to use a single D.C. court ruling to steamroller Internet users' privacy nationwide," said EFF staff attorney Wendy Seltzer. "This ruling confirms that Due Process continues to apply, even on the Internet, and we hope other colleges and ISPs will take similar steps."
District Judge Joseph Tauro granted MIT and Boston College motions to quash RIAA subpoenas demanding identities of students on the university networks.
Rejects Music Sharing Subpoenas Sent to MIT, Boston College
Boston, MA - A Massachusetts district court today dealt the
Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) a serious
setback by rejecting its Washington, D.C., subpoenas for
the identities of Massachusetts students. For the moment,
MIT and Boston College need not respond to the RIAA demands.
"Today's ruling requires the recording industry to file
subpoenas where it alleges that copyright infringement
occurs, rather than blanketing the country from one court in
D.C.," said Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) Staff
Attorney Wendy Seltzer. "The court ruling confirms that due
process applies to Internet user privacy nationwide."
Massachusetts District Judge Joseph Tauro granted requests
from MIT and Boston College to reject RIAA subpoenas
demanding identities of students the RIAA claims are
violating copyright. The subpoenas are part of a
nationwide effort by the RIAA to identify and crack down on
alleged copyright violators using peer-to-peer (P2P)
software to share music on the Internet.
"We urge other colleges and Internet service providers to
take similar steps to protect their users' privacy," said
EFF Legal Director Cindy Cohn. "ISPs should notify users
whose information is sought, and fight against improper
Pacific Bell Internet Services has filed suit in California
complaining of the threat to subscribers' privacy and the
burden on Internet service providers. The RIAA has
reportedly filed more than 2,000 subpoenas through the D.C.
court and has announced plans to sue file-sharers later this
EFF offers an online database users can check to see whether
their identities have been subpoenaed by the RIAA. EFF
urges concerned citizens to learn more about ways to make
filesharing legal while getting artists paid as part of the
Let the Music Play Campaign.
- Court documents at RIAA v. The People
- EFF Let the Music Play campaign
- Check the RIAA Subpoena Database
- How Not To Get Sued By The RIAA For File-Sharing
Electronic Frontier Foundation
+1 415 436-9333 x125 (office)
Electronic Frontier Foundation
+1 415 436-9333 x108 (office)