updated 01:50 pm EST, Wed February 28, 2007
RIAA College Olive Branch
The Recording Industry Association of America will offer a possible reprieve to college students, according to a statement by the group. The RIAA plans to offer "discounted" settlements to 400 suspected illegal music traders spread across the campuses of 13 universities, hoping to discourage many students from contesting the claims in a costly and protracted lawsuit. "Hundreds" more of these offers will follow every month, the RIAA said.
The organization has been routinely criticized for the practice by the Electronic Frontier Foundation and other advocacy groups, which have often accused the music label coalition of intimidating targets into paying compensation regardless of their actual guilt. An Oklahoma judge recently ruled against the RIAA in a recent case, arguing that the group bullied a woman whose only connection to file sharing was her Internet service account.