You can easily buy songs from iTunes for $0.99. Heck, you can pick up a couple CDs off of Amazon for a couple buck more. But Joel Tenenbaum decided to go the file-sharing route almost a decade ago and now he’s going to pay for it. He’s going to have to pay all of $675,ooo for it.
Tenenbaum was caught sharing thirty tracks on Kazaa. He was subsequently ordered to pay $5,250 for sharing the tracks, but he didn’t. (But let me ask you, would you?) Anyway, the case went to court in 2007 and he was slapped with a hefty fine of $22,500 per track.
Tenenbaum appealed and a judge cut the fines back by 90 percent. But his story doesn’t end well, because the record companies who filed the case in the first place also appealed–and won. Now Joel has to pay over half a million dollars for thirty measly tracks. No doubt this is to teach all the file-sharers and music pirates of the world a lesson by using him as an example.
The fine sounds crazy, but it’s perfectly legal. Heck, courts can fine a guy for sharing a track from $750 to $150,000. If they opted to choose the maximum amount, Joel might even end up having to pay $4.5 million!
Tenenbaum’s officially screwed until his lawyers can find some sort of loophope to let him worm his way out of the crazy fine. So folks, be smart about it. Don’t share and let get caught (but it’s probably best to just get your music legally. For your sake.)