Monday, April 25, 2005

Hot Press on the IRMA litigation

May's Hot Press has an article (not available online, as far as I know) about the filesharing litigation, including an interview with Dick Doyle of IRMA. Some interesting snippets from that article:
"18 months ago we sent brochures to 800 companies. We sent brochures to every governmental department. We sent one to every third level educational institution in the country. They all came back to me with what firewalls they have, and showed us what they're doing to make sure their students or lecturers aren't involved in it. They gave me evidence to show that under their Codes of Conduct, students will be taken off Internet access, fined or suspended."

"In the last three months, we've sent 6 million instant messages", he continues. "When someone is filesharing, a pop-up message comes up and says, 'This is IRMA - What you're doing is illegal'."


In order to identify music uploaders, Doyle spent a number of months infiltrating filesharing communities online. With the cooperation of an unnamed 'specialist' company, 4,000 seed songs were planted in various filesharing outlets (among them, Doyle recalls, tracks by Keane, Radiohead, Eminem and ABBA).


When contacted by IRMA, the 17 targeted individuals will be faced with two options.

"Option one is that they will be snowed under by evidence, and I will ask them to settle straightaway. This will involve getting rid of illegal files, cleaning up their PCs, getting rid of filesharing software. They will also, under court order, be asked to pay damages."

"In the UK, in 26 actions taken four months ago, 25 took option 1 and paid £3,000 damages. I would presume that anyone with common sense would do that."


"On this particular wave we've hit KaZaA and Gnutella, on the next we'll hit Limewire and all the rest."

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