LimeWire to Pay Record Companies, Not Musicians, Hundreds of Millions in Fines

Finally, the poor, defrauded victims of copyright infringement will be able to make some of their lost money back.

Unfortunately for musicians, many of whom are literally poor, the record companies are going to get the lions share.

One week into a federal grand jury trial, Michael Gorton, LimeWire’s founder, agreed to pay the Recording Industry Association of America $105 million. Gorton was already found guilty of copyright infringement, so the trial was about how much LimeWire would have to pay up, not if.

Having to pay $105 million is actually a good deal for LimeWire, since the RIAA was asking for a total of $1.4 billion.

But this is not a good deal for artists. RIAA spokesman Jonathan Lamy previously told TorrentFreak that any money awarded from piracy-related lawsuits will go towards funding more anti-piracy campaigns.

If this is indeed how the money will be spent, it doesn’t bode well for the RIAA’s faith in the effectiveness of the existing anti-piracy campaign.

Which is exactly what LimeWire’s lawyers argued – that music piracy was not invented by LimeWire and will keep happening even after people just remember LimeWire in a vague, Napster-y way.

During the trial, Gorton’s attorney told jurors that when a file-sharing service goes offline, users “just funnel into the next-best service.”

“The next best thing” is kind of a catchy name for a new file sharing service. Some savvy pirates should snap that up while the domain is still available. LimeWire to Pay Record Companies, Not Musicians, Hundreds of Millions in Fines