– The Obama Justice Dept. has submitted a filing defending a $675,000 damages
award for copyright infringement on a file-sharing network, the Copyrights and
Campaigns blog reported. Joel Tenenbaum was found guilty of sharing 30 songs on
Kazaa, and ordered to pay the record labels damages of $22,500 per song. He has
since asked the court to either reduce the damages or grant him a new trial,
arguing the damages amount is unconstitutional.
In its filing, the Justice
Dept. argues that Tenenbaum’s actions caused "great public harm."
establishing the range [of copyright damage amounts: $750 to $150,000 per
infringement], Congress took into account the need to deter the millions of
users of new media from infringing copyrights in an environment where many
violators believe they will go unnoticed," reads the DOJ filing.
harms Congress sought to address, moreover, are not negated merely because an
infringer does not seek commercial gain. Accordingly, the statutory range
specified by Congress for a copyright infringement satisfies due process."
(Copyrights and Campaigns blog)
(DMW previous coverage)