MPAA: No Proof Needed, Just Hand Over the Money
Wow. The MPAA thinks that because modern technology makes it hard to legally prove the origins of copyrighted materials distributed via the net, they should be able to collect damages from people without proving anything.
The Motion Picture Association of America said Friday intellectual-property holders should have the right to collect damages, perhaps as much as $150,000 per copyright violation, without having to prove infringement.
“Mandating such proof could thus have the pernicious effect of depriving copyright owners of a practical remedy against massive copyright infringement in many instances,” MPAA attorney Marie L. van Uitert wrote Friday to the federal judge overseeing the Jammie Thomas trial.
“It is often very difficult, and in some cases, impossible, to provide such direct proof when confronting modern forms of copyright infringement, whether over P2P networks or otherwise; understandably, copyright infringers typically do not keep records of infringement,” van Uitert wrote on behalf of the movie studios, a position shared with the Recording Industry Association of America, which sued Thomas, the single mother of two.
I’m strongly in favor of protecting copyrights, and against this kind of piracy, but this proposal just sounds completely backward and un-American. The technology has evolved to a point where they can’t control it, and instead of coming up with creative solutions the big media companies are lashing out like wounded animals.