At the end of last year we heard news that RIAA was dropping its strategy of filing lawsuit against individuals. I am sure a lot of individuals will breath a sigh of relief. Me? No. Not because I am a file sharer, but I do not know what is RIAA’s next move.
If RIAA abandon plan A, then it must put into action plan B. They might already have plan B ready before the abandon plan A, but they might still be formulating it. Whatever the case, I do not like the rumoured plan B, i.e., working with ISP to cut file-sharers out of the internet. Why? The plan as it stands is too harsh, it lacks the proper check and balance. It has to be refined further before I will say whether the plan is a potentially good one, or too one-sided. The “Three strikes and you are out” sounds fair, but the only problem is what constitute a strike? RIAA’s record in the lawsuit litigations does not inspire confidence.
Sarah McBride, the same author of the above link, brought us another piece of news saying RIAA is dropping MediaSentry. It should not surprise anyone. If one is to name a party that contributed most to RIAA’s bad reputation, MediaSentry will be top of the candidate list. [The other will be RIAA’s own litigation lawyers, for dragging their legs and pursuing lawsuits that should had ended much earlier]. While Ray Beckerman of the Recording Industry vs. the People blog fame, claims that MediaSentry’s technique to catch file sharer means “…MediaSentry couldn’t prove defendants had shared their files with anyone other than MediaSentry investigators.” is technically true, I do not think this is the major cause to accuse MediaSentry of bad practices. For one this argument will not fly in court. MediaSentry’s problem is it cannot even prove conclusively that when they accuse someone of offering pirate music, it cannot prove that it got the pirated music from the accuser! That’s bad practice in anyone’s book. Of course, the accusation that they do not even bother to make sure they are properly licensed to conduct their investigation does not help.