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RIAA Lawsuits Unpopular in United States
August 23, 2004
Thomas Mennecke
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Back in June of 2003, the RIAA began it anti-P2P crusade with a vengeance. For years, pesky teenagers and 8 year olds have victimized the RIAA. Their crimes include discovering new artists and taking away business from mainstream attractions. Of course such an outrage could not be tolerated, and the music industry began its attempt to sue its customers back into the music store.

Has their lawsuit campaign worked? Depends on whom you ask. For the average Kazaa Media Desktop user, the answer is for the most part yes. Since the lawsuit campaign began, FastTrack's population has dwindled from and average of 4.5 million users to around 2.5 million (although it seems to have stabilized.) However, those who recognize the obvious danger of using a vulnerable application such as Kazaa Media Desktop, then the answer begins to change.

Virtually all the lawsuits filed thus far have been against FastTrack (Kazaa) users. True enough a few Manolito P2P (Blubster, Piolet) lawsuits have popped up, however interestingly enough no resolution for the RIAA has ever been established. And now with the Manolito network's new encrypted protocol, chances of a successful lawsuit are even slimmer.

While the RIAA has been successful to some extent against FastTrack, its overall crusade against file-sharing can be at best classified as mixed. Alternative networks, such as eDonkey2000, BitTorrent, Ares Galaxy and hosts of others have taken up much of the slack. In addition, many of these networks are not as easy to target as FastTrack. Many P2P analysts agree that the RIAA's biggest success so far has been in creating less vulnerable file-sharing communities.

As file-sharing remains popular in the United States and elsewhere around the world, the RIAA's lawsuit campaign is not. In an article published by Sterophile.com, a recent study conducted by Ipsos shows that a majority of Americans are against the RIAA's lawsuits. In a recent study, 57% of those polled were against the lawsuits, while 37% supported them. 7% of those questioned did not have any opinion. Demographics also played a role in the results, as those in the 18-34 range disapproved by an impressive 67%.

Will the RIAA’s lawsuit campaign run out of gas any time soon? Probably not. There are plenty of FastTrack users out there that are largely uninformed about the RIAA’s lawsuits, tactics or safer alternative networks. As long as people peck away at the RIAA’s chum, it is a good bet the music industry will keep trolling.

This story is filed in these Slyck News categories
Entertainment Industry :: RIAA
Legal/Courtroom :: Individual Lawsuits

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