Archive for Wednesday, October 17, 2007

KU awaiting subpoena for illegal music downloads

October 17, 2007


More than a dozen KU students served lawsuits

More information has become available about the lawsuits filed against more than a dozen KU students for alleged copyright infringement. Enlarge video

On the street

Do you think the possibility of having a lawsuit brought against them deters students from downloading music?

I don’t think it does. I don’t think they are very responsible about it. They think it doesn’t apply to them and that they won’t get in trouble.

More responses

Illegal file downloading is a problem that affects most college campuses, including Kansas University.

In September, the recording industry filed federal lawsuits against 14 unidentified KU students who allegedly committed copyright infringement through illegal music downloads. Then, on Oct. 1, a subpoena was ordered seeking documents from KU that identify the students. The university has yet to receive the subpoena.

The subpoena stems from an incident last summer. In July, the Recording Industry Association of America sent letters to the university offering settlements to the 14 students before filing lawsuits against them. It was requested of the university that the letters be forwarded to the students because the true names of the students were unknown to the RIAA; only the Internet protocol (IP) addresses from which the illegal activity occurred had been obtained. The university did not release the students' identities.

"We will protect the privacy of our students," said university spokesman Todd Cohen. "We're not just going to hand over identification to anybody who sends us a letter alleging something. They need to go to court and then, of course, we'll follow whatever the courts direct us to do."

Cohen added that once the university receives the subpoena, the students will be contacted and told that their information has been requested. The students will then decide the next step to be taken regarding their particular lawsuits.

University officials have taken measures to stop illegal music downloading on campus. This summer, KU enacted a zero-tolerance policy for students using the Internet network provided in all residence halls. Violators could lose their Internet access.

"Internet is $100 a semester," said Brian Morehouse, a KU sophomore. "If I get caught, I don't want to waste $100 for nothing, for a couple of songs."

Even with these measures in place students continue to download files illegally, some said.

"I do it all the time," said KU sophomore Kenny Voelker. "I haven't paid for a CD in probably five, six years."

Voelker resides off-campus but said that when he did live in the residence halls he and many others downloaded illegally with no problems at all.

"There are many different sites where you can go to download full CDs, movies, TV shows, anything, books, whatever you want," Voelker said.

And while there are many legal alternatives for downloading, the ease of getting the same thing for free is tempting.

"I personally don't do it anymore," said KU junior Ross Miller. "It's kind of nice with the $1 iTunes downloads, but at the same time it can be much more convenient to get it free, especially because it's so available."

- 6News intern Crispin Lopez can be reached at 832-6335.


oldvet 10 years, 8 months ago

Ladies and Gentlemen... the next supoena goes to that self-identified thief, Kenny!!! Kenny, come on down!!!

What a knucklehead! "You're going to put me in the paper! Cool! With my name and everything? Cool!!! Sure, I'm a thief, I do it all the time, I steal copyrighted stuff... so what!"

tolawdjk 10 years, 8 months ago


Given his deductive reasoning, his abilty to think fast on his feet, and his clear ability to see the "big picture" I'm going to go with a 95% probablility that he is, er was, poly-sci with strong desires to go to law school after his undergrad.

justthefacts 10 years, 8 months ago

Good grief. Hope Kenny is ready to declare bankruptcy once he gets sued and loses his civil case (he's admitted to his theft in a very public way!). That is about the only way he's going to get them off his neck (unless he has $200,000 laying around to pay the fines etc.).

introversion 10 years, 8 months ago

I agree- What Kenny did is definitely tempting fate...


Lest we forget how our legal system works? Kenny can say he's done it, but without the cooperation of Kenny's internet provider, the burden of proof is on the RIAA... If they can't match Kenny's name up with his IP address, then Kenny can say whatever he wants, and the RIAA can't do anything.

Like I said, not smart, but maybe not as dumb as you all think at first glance.

terrapin2 10 years, 8 months ago

Maybe he didn't give his real name? Do you really think the reporter checked his photo ID?

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