You thought the RIAA was bad. From Aunty Spam’s Net Patrol:
Where the similarity ends, however, is that the RIAA for the most part only went after people who had downloaded hundreds, if not thousands, of songs. The MPAA and friends are suing people even if they have downloaded only one movie ever. One. Ever.
The odds are pretty good that if somebody has only ever downloaded one movie, a) they did it for their own personal use rather than to traffic in pirated movies, or they did it to experiment (in which case they probably didn’t even inhale), b) they probably discovered that for the time it takes to download a movie, they could drive to Blockbuster, rent the movie, take it home, watch it, and return it, all before the download was done, c) given ‘a’ and ‘b’, if they’ve only done it once, and it wasn’t recently, they probably aren’t going to do it again, and d) the odds of the MPAA actually recouping their cost of the lawsuit from the type of individual likely to download one movie seems slim. The MPAA is asking for up to $150,000 per movie in damages, and of course attorneys fees alone will in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
I guess we should start prosecuting everyone for any illegal discretion made just once. I think we should start in Congress. Lied on your tax return? Better prosecute to the fullest extent of the law. Tried drugs? Don’t you know we’re at war with that—go to Guantanamo, do not pass Go?