In a win for the RIAA /Record Industry Association of America (representing a group of labels including Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group, and the Warner Music Group) , legal proceedings initiated against MP3Skull- the top-ranked MP3 sharing sites on the internet- has been successful, with the maximum damages being awarded.
With 148 songs tendered as evidence, U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke granted the RIAA’s request of USD$150,000 in statutory damages for each track, bringing the total to more than $22 million, in a default judgement made after the owners of the notorious file sharing site failed to show in court. As the owners did not contest the motion for a ‘default judgement’ their identity remains unknown.
Despite the courtroom victory, The RIAA still faces a challenge in enforcing the court’s ruling, as like many sites before them MP3Skull is engaged in the usual cat and mouse tactic; having currently moved to the .yoga domain, there are doubtless others in reserve which are already set up to function identically to their current site. The long term effect of this victory remains to be seen.