decoration decoration

When you want to know more...
For layout only
Site Map
About Groklaw
Legal Research
ApplevSamsung p.2
Cast: Lawyers
Comes v. MS
Gordon v MS
IV v. Google
Legal Docs
MS Litigations
News Picks
Novell v. MS
Novell-MS Deal
OOXML Appeals
Quote Database
Red Hat v SCO
Salus Book
SCEA v Hotz
SCO Appeals
SCO Bankruptcy
SCO Financials
SCO Overview
SCO v Novell
Sean Daly
Software Patents
Switch to Linux
Unix Books
Your contributions keep Groklaw going.
To donate to Groklaw 2.0:

Groklaw Gear

Click here to send an email to the editor of this weblog.

Contact PJ

Click here to email PJ. You won't find me on Facebook Donate Paypal

User Functions



Don't have an account yet? Sign up as a New User

No Legal Advice

The information on Groklaw is not intended to constitute legal advice. While Mark is a lawyer and he has asked other lawyers and law students to contribute articles, all of these articles are offered to help educate, not to provide specific legal advice. They are not your lawyers.

Here's Groklaw's comments policy.

What's New

No new stories

COMMENTS last 48 hrs
No new comments


hosted by ibiblio

On servers donated to ibiblio by AMD.

1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota
Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 06:50 PM EDT

Do you remember when Ray Beckerman asked to pick your brain about an upcoming deposition? Well, he tells me that a case (with the same expert who was deposed) is about to go to trial now, and he thought you'd like to know about it. If there are any folks in or near Duluth, Minnesota, who would like to attend the trial, it is set for Tuesday at 9 AM. I'll let Ray tell you about the details, but if anyone does go, please send us a report. This is history in the making, in that this is the very first RIAA jury trial to actually go to trial in all the years since the RIAA began to sue people four or so years ago. I gather they tried to get out of this one too, but now it's set and it will happen.


First RIAA Jury Trial to Begin Tuesday, October 2nd, in Duluth, Minnesota
~ by Ray Beckerman

One thing that has never happened during the RIAA's four and a half year litigation campaign against consumers is a trial. In the past, when pressed to go to trial, the RIAA has dropped the case. See, e.g., Elektra v. Santangelo, Atlantic v. Andersen, and Capitol v. Foster.

Now, after losing its eleventh hour motion for summary adjudication, the RIAA is now scheduled to go forward with its very first jury trial on Tuesday, October, 2nd, in, of all places, Duluth, Minnesota.

The case does not appear to be one of the stronger cases the RIAA could have brought, since there is no indication of the defendant having committed a copyright infringement.

The plaintiff's witness list, submitted last week, includes such luminaries as the RIAA's president Cary Sherman and the RIAA's "expert witness" Dr. Doug Jacobson, the Iowa State educator in whose deposition the Groklaw community participated actively, both in formulating questions and in vetting the finished transcript.

The proceedings are of course open to the public. Details are as follows: Tuesday, October 2, 2007 9:00 A.M. US District Court, District of Minnesota Duluth Division Courtroom of Hon. Michael Davis 417 Federal Building 515 W. 1st Street Duluth, Minnesota

Directions to the courthouse may be found here.


1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota | 250 comments | Create New Account
Comments belong to whoever posts them. Please notify us of inappropriate comments.
OT Here
Authored by: russellphoto on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 06:52 PM EDT
Please make links clickable


[ Reply to This | # ]

Corrections here
Authored by: russellphoto on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 06:54 PM EDT
And don't you just wish you could correct the RIAA by slapping them now and

But, play nice and correct any and all items in teh article as necesary and when
spiled wrang.


[ Reply to This | # ]

newspics comments here [NT]
Authored by: rc on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 06:58 PM EDT
Yah, here please. And please reference the pick with a url, or at LEAST the correct title!



[ Reply to This | # ]

1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota
Authored by: Holocene Epoch on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 06:59 PM EDT
My question is, would a loss by RIAA have any effect on the prior settlements?
Or, once you have settled or paid up, its done, nothing you can go back and do
anything about. Fini.

- wb -

[ Reply to This | # ]

This should be interesting...
Authored by: The Mad Hatter r on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 07:47 PM EDT

Thanks for the update, I wish I could be there but I'll be in Ann Arbour that

Still I'm looking forward to seeing the report.


[ Reply to This | # ]

1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota
Authored by: foulis on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 08:14 PM EDT
I live 6 hours and a border crossing away. Would be very interesting to go and
watch the RIAA two-step in court. I will have to ask the boss to see if I can
get a few days off. If I can get the days off, I'll send PJ an email looking for
instructions on note taking.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Strong circumstantial case
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 08:34 PM EDT
I recall when the questions were put to Groklaw readers. From what I remember
the RIAA has a strong circumstantial case against the defendant. Obviously they
cannot prove that the defendant was the one on-line at the time, but they can
prove that somebody was, and that there is a strong chance that it was indeed
the defendant. In a civil case, all it takes is "a preponderance of the
evidence" and a majority of the jury.

Good luck.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Authored by: Rob M on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 10:18 PM EDT
How the heck did they find an impartial jury after all the baloney the RIAA has

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Jury? - Authored by: Ray Beckerman on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 10:25 PM EDT
    • Jury? - Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 10:52 PM EDT
      • Shouldn't matter - Authored by: cmc on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 11:33 PM EDT
      • Jury? - Authored by: Ed L. on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 11:45 PM EDT
        • Jury? - Authored by: PJ on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 11:49 PM EDT
      • Jury? - Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 02:43 AM EDT
Not the same case as UMG v. Lindor
Authored by: Ray Beckerman on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 10:23 PM EDT

1. It's not the same case as the one in which the deposition was taken. That was UMG v. Lindor. But it's the same all-purpose "expert". And it's the same fake "investigation".

2. It would be cool if people can be there and report back.

Best regards,

[ Reply to This | # ]

No guarantees
Authored by: Ray Beckerman on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 10:45 PM EDT
There's no guarantee it will happen. I'm guessing the RIAA will chicken out.

Best regards,

[ Reply to This | # ]

When I first rad this...
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 10:49 PM EDT
I had two words come to mind: Jury Nullification.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Authored by: DodgeRules on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 11:39 PM EDT
RIAA files for bankruptcy the day before the trial is to begin.

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Answer: - Authored by: Rann on Thursday, September 27 2007 @ 11:56 PM EDT
1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota
Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 12:47 AM EDT

Some people may remember an earlier math bug mentioned here (search for "divide"). Typing "PRINT 0.1/10" an an early IBM PC yielded 0.001, which was wrong by a factor of 10. The error was in Microsoft code, and as with this bug it was not really an error in the math, but in printing the resultant value.

This was a hardware problem, since the IBM PC BASIC was in ROM. BASIC in ROM was an exclusive which IBM had; no other PC manufacturer could offer Microsoft BASIC in ROM. But after the "PRINT 0.1/10" bug ROM BASIC didn't seem like much of an advantage. :-)

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • Oops - Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 12:52 AM EDT
1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota
Authored by: moz1959 on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 02:08 AM EDT
The RIAA could always file for chapter 11 couldn't they?

After all, they would seem to be morally bankrupt already, so probably nobody
would dispute the claim.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Confidence Trick
Authored by: sproggit on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 02:48 AM EDT
Consider the RIAA.

Before the internet, before the advent of digital media, the only way for a recording artist to make a successful and profitable career would be to sign a deal with a large record label and then watch a large portion of the revenue generated by their work go to line the pockets of the company executives. Pressing vinyl was expensive. Getting airplay on radio stations was difficult. The environment created the monopoly position for the record companies.

The problem is, the RIAA would like you to believe that this previous business model - a model that required the presence of a "record label" - is still not just a valid argument in the 21st century, but the only one. Simply: it isn't.

With modern PCs and software like QBase it is possible for any halfway competent artists to record, mix and edit their own material. With a domestic PC they can put out that content as MP3 or CD, as they wish. The only thing that a record company provides above that is widespread marketing and advertising, funded from their profits. Not distribution, not anything.

By all means let the RIAA and others bleat on about their precious copyrights. It's misdirection and noise. And last time I checked copyrights belonged to the original author unless sold.

Just as Richard Stallman's work with the Free Software Foundation showed the world that it was possible to write and distribute free software that was better than commercial equivalent products, so it is inevitable that we will see a music industry equivalent, a paradigm shift in which the music world wakes up to the realisation that the record companies have become a leach, a drain, sucking the life out of creative artists.

Think about it. What's to stop an artist or band from recording 10 tracks in a studio, then offering them directly to iTunes for a cut of the profits? Nothing. The RIAA would like you to believe that their tax on recording artists is mandated by Heaven.

It isn't.

The music industry as we knew it in the 20th century is dead.

They just don't know it yet.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Learning to speak Judge - a Groklaw education
Authored by: Guil Rarey on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 09:54 AM EDT
Something caught my eye when I read the order about why the order was issued. Three years ago, this wouldn't have impressed me. Today, the first thing I did was check to find out that Mr. Reynolds was admitted pro hac vice and realized that out-of-town counsel just point-blank lied to a judge.

My experience as a son of a lawyer is that representing your client's position in such a way that it amounts to bald-face lying or fraud is regarded as "zealous advocacy" or at any rate as matters of fact for the trial process to sort out. The social cost and consequence of such outrages probably gets insufficient consideration, but that's another matter.

However, lying about inter-lawyer procedural matters, mis-representing the conduct of lawyers - that sort of stuff - will get everyone - judges, other lawyers - everyone - riled up at you in a hurry.

So thanks to PJ for teaching me to speak enough Judge to understand just how much trouble Mr. Reynolds is in. See for yourself....

At the Hearing, the Plaintiffs argued that they were prepared to submit a Declaration of Timothy M. Reynolds (“Reynolds”), who is counsel for the Plaintiffs, to the effect that he had received authorization, from the Defendant’s counsel, to electronically sign the proposed Stipulation. On inquiry by the Court, however, defense counsel categorically denied that assertion, and advised the Court that he had never authorized the Plaintiffs to sign his name to any of the draft Stipulations. The Defendant’s counsel is an officer of this Court, has frequently appeared before this Court with distinction, and we are presented with no reason to doubt his direct representation that he never authorized the Plaintiffs’ counsel to sign any proposed Stipulation on his behalf. On this limited Record, we find no reason to credit the position of one party over the other. Had the Plaintiffs submitted a signed document, or competent evidence that an agreement had been reached, we might be presented with a different issue, but we are not at liberty to find an agreement, where the Record fails to support one.

If the only way you can value something is with money, you have no idea what it's worth. If you try to make money by making money, you won't. You might con so

[ Reply to This | # ]

1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota
Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 11:04 AM EDT
Hey all,
I live in Duluth and will be attending the trial. I'll be sure to post and let
you know how it goes...

[ Reply to This | # ]

1st RIAA Jury Trial Begins Tuesday in Minnesota
Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 12:38 PM EDT
I have used Encase extensively over several years, it's my day job.

Some things struck me:

- He kept referring to examining the hard disk. It sounds like he was previewing
the drive rather than imaging the drive and examining the image.
- Was the disk imaged at the time of the investigation and if so has the defence
got a copy of the images? If I was the defence I would want a competent forensic
examiner to look at that drive image.
- I would also want to know how it could be proved I was looking at the correct
- Some of the data that he asserts is not stored on the disk is in fact saved in
the registry - there are a lot of artifacts in the registry.
- I wouldn't characterize what was done as a forensic investigation, 45 minutes
isn't even long enough to run a decent keyword search in Encase if the disk is
any size.

This was a sloppy piece of work.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Will MediaDefender be a factor?
Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, September 28 2007 @ 03:12 PM EDT
Anyone think that the MediaDefender email leak might come into play in this
trial (assuming they don't chicken out)?

From the leaked emails, MD was definitely hired by RIAA labels, and they
cooperated with MediaSentry on at least one occasion (so as not to interdict
each others' torrents).

Whether or not they actually provide evidence that someone was a downloader is
less clear. The MiiVi site seems to have had both child pornography and
copyright infringement in mind, but the details are less than clear. They
talked about gathering lots of statistics for business intelligence, but the
purpose was not always clear (although much of the time, it was to see how
popular some album was).

There were a couple of indications that they might have or might have been
considering gathering evidence for prosecution, but most of that was connected
to the derailed MiiVi site and there's no clear evidence showing that they
provided any of the logs the RIAA uses.

The leaked source code might be more clear, but I haven't seen any public
analysis yet and I haven't downloaded any of the torrents, personally.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Authored by: Ray Beckerman on Tuesday, October 02 2007 @ 10:12 AM EDT

Best regards,

[ Reply to This | # ]

  • News? - Authored by: ewilts on Tuesday, October 02 2007 @ 10:48 AM EDT
Jury selection completed
Authored by: Ray Beckerman on Tuesday, October 02 2007 @ 12:46 PM EDT
6-woman, 6-man jury selected; opening statements scheduled for 11 am.

Best regards,

[ Reply to This | # ]

Reasonable Coverage
Authored by: Anonymous on Tuesday, October 02 2007 @ 05:04 PM EDT (registration required) seems to have fairly
reasonable coverage of the trial.

[ Reply to This | # ]

RIAA Won apparently
Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, October 05 2007 @ 03:08 AM EDT

According to NYTimes RIAA won the case.

Sad. Just sad.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Groklaw © Copyright 2003-2013 Pamela Jones.
All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective owners.
Comments are owned by the individual posters.

PJ's articles are licensed under a Creative Commons License. ( Details )