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RIAA Goes Back to School

5:45 PM -- The Recording Industry Association of America has launched a new attack on the nation's college students, sending 503 prelitigation settlement letters to students at 58 universities throughout the U.S.

The trade group says that in the seven rounds of letters it has sent since launching its deterrence program in February 2007, it has targeted approximately 2,926 students.

But this time around, the organization was nice enough to give the students a reprieve, sort of:

Because of the summer schedule, the RIAA is extending the amount of time that the recipient of a pre-litigation letter has to contact the organization’s legal representatives to work out a settlement.


How kind of them.

In the meantime, it's kind of an open question how well such a deterrence program actually works. The RIAA itself whines about its plight:

A survey by Student Monitor from last year found that more than half of college students download music and movies illegally. According to market research firm NPD, college students alone accounted for more than 1.3 billion illegal music downloads in 2006.


After all, if college students weren't already deterred by the rash of lawsuits that have been filed by the RIAA, I don't see how these letters, as symbolic as they are, are going to make much of a difference.

And while the RIAA bends over backwards to point out the amount of affordable, or even free, legal music that's out there, it's hard to imagine college students wanting to buy anything from a group that threatens to sue them. I mean, that's a heck of a business model.

— Ryan Lawler, P2P Proselytizer, Light Reading

AlexanderMarion 1/13/2020 | 3:52:18 AM
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