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RIAA withdraws prosecution amnesty

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The Recording Industry Ass. of America (RIAA) will no longer offer an amnesty to online music sharers who confess to their crimes.

So reveal papers filed with the US court last week in response to legal action brought against the RIAA, the Winona Daily News reports.

The organisation, which represents the major music recording companies in the US, wants the lawsuit against it dropped because the amnesty scheme which prompted the action is no longer operational.

The RIAA launched the 'Clean Slate' scheme last September. It offered to indemnify anyone who admitted to sharing music against future lawsuits it might instigate, provided they offered up written testimony that they would no longer share music without the permission of the copyright holder.

California resident Eric Parke sued the RIAA, alleging that the Clean Slate programme amounted to a fraudulent business practice, since it could not make such a guarantee.

"The RIAA has concluded that the program is no longer necessary or appropriate, and has voluntarily withdrawn it," the RIAA's lawyers told the court, the papers reveal. The reason: the public have received sufficient education to know that sharing music is wrong, apparently. Oh, and almost no one is now taking the RIAA up on its offer.

It said it does intend to honour the indemnity offered to the 1108 people who have sought amnesty from prosecution under the now-ended scheme. ®

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