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The Courts The Internet United States Your Rights Online

LimeWire Likely To Shut Down Soon 264

suraj.sun quotes from a CNET story: "A federal court judge has likely dealt a death blow to LimeWire, one of the most popular and oldest file-sharing systems, according to legal experts. On Wednesday ... US District Judge Kimba Wood granted summary judgment in favor of the ... [RIAA], which filed a copyright lawsuit against LimeWire in 2006. In her decision, Wood ruled Lime Group, parent of LimeWire software maker Lime Wire, and founder Mark Gorton committed copyright infringement, induced copyright infringement, and engaged in unfair competition. 'It is obviously a fairly fatal decision for them,' said [an industry defense lawyer]. 'If they don't shut down, the other side will likely make a request for an injunction and there's nothing left but to go on to calculating damages.'" The article notes that LimeWire is used by nearly 60% of the people who download songs.
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LimeWire Likely To Shut Down Soon

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 16, 2010 @06:37PM (#32230768)
    I stopped using Limewire years ago after downloading a few nasty viruses and hundreds of low quality and incomplete music. Free music was no longer worth my trouble. I switched to iTunes and legal music purchases and have never looked back.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 16, 2010 @06:38PM (#32230784)

    this may have been true when the law suit started

  • by ducomputergeek ( 595742 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @06:38PM (#32230788)

    A lot of non-tech people who don't understand he difference between Bit Torrent let alone what Bit Torrent even is. Although, usually when I see Windows machines infected or doing strange things at the local coffee shop, the person has lime wire installed.

    My understanding was there were more virus and other malware infected stuff on limewire than just about any other source. Granted that was a few years ago.

  • by Endo13 ( 1000782 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @06:44PM (#32230826)

    You don't use a torrent to grab a three or four meg file: swarming protocols work best for sharing large files.

    Most people these days who used to use limewire now use torrents to download albums and band collections, then use iTunes to pick up the odd track here and there that was too much trouble to get from a torrent.

  • by black88 ( 559855 ) <passonno AT gmail DOT com> on Sunday May 16, 2010 @07:00PM (#32230970) Journal

    What I tend to do is, if there is a song on an album that I need, I will just download the torrent, open it in utorrent, and only choose to download that particular song.

  • 60%? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Arancaytar ( 966377 ) <> on Sunday May 16, 2010 @07:01PM (#32230980) Homepage

    That number seems either misleading or bullshit. Earlier reports were saying that the vast majority of peer-to-peer filesharing goes through BitTorrent, and now a different network is supposed to have more than half of the traffic?

    Perhaps they mean 60% of the non-torrent traffic?

  • Good (Score:5, Interesting)

    by devent ( 1627873 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @07:19PM (#32231098) Homepage
    That's a good thing. I wish they could stop all illegal downloads of music, videos and software. When people finally can't download any free content from the mafia (i.e. content industry) the people will finally see how expensive and restricted the legal alternative is and turn to free and independent sources.

    Imagen, if you can't download Windows, Photoshop or MS Office anymore. Maybe than people will see and embrace the free alternatives which are more than sufficient for at least 99% of the users. The same with music, that people can discover that there are plenty of independent music bands with music good as on MTV. And there is plenty of DRM free games, a few free to download, like the []
  • by mikael_j ( 106439 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @07:23PM (#32231148)

    Well, here in Sweden it seems almost no one uses iTunes to buy anything. The main reasons for this seem to be:

    1. Spotify - Lots of people who are "casual" music listeners just use Spotify, it's like listening to the radio except you get the songs you want.
    2. File sharing started early here in Sweden - Which means that for-pay services lagged behind regular file sharing even further than in a lot of other places.
    3. No TV shows on iTunes - I've heard a lot of people here say they'd be more inclined to use iTunes to buy stuff if they could also pay for TV shows, not possible here in Sweden though.
    4. Downloading music, TV shows and Movies used to be legal/semi-legal up until quite recently - It was basically made illegal because the content industry told our politicians that we'd be transformed into a Internet equivalent of a third world country otherwise.
  • by MokuMokuRyoushi ( 1701196 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @07:25PM (#32231162) Journal
    While it may not have any inherent value, here's a purpose it served for me - disposable decoy. With LimeWire in a legal headlock, the other, much more useful programs, protocols and services are going to come under attack now.
  • Google (Score:4, Interesting)

    by whisper_jeff ( 680366 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @07:45PM (#32231292)
    And what is Google doing during each of these cases. As the RIAA wages battle against these smaller search engines (because, really, that's what they are) and wins, they are building an ever-increasingly large portfolio of prior case law. Eventually the RIAA are going to decide that enough cases have gone their way that they can wage the real battle - to go after Google (and Bing and Yahoo). I am shocked that Google's legal department is just sitting and watching these cases unfold without offering assistance. Then again, I'm not a lawyer nor a multi-billion dollar corporation so what do I know?...
  • Re:UMG v. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by paeanblack ( 191171 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @08:04PM (#32231402)

    There is a crucial difference between how lawyers and engineers view the issue:

    To an engineer, the content of a digital file is the primary attribute. Two files with identical contents are indistinguishable and interchangeable.

    To a lawyer, the pedigree of a digital file just as important as the content. Two identical files with different histories are different entities.

    What this means is that if you and your friend each own a copy of the same album, you may feel it is reasonable to copy data from his disk when convenient, since you legally own a copy with the exact same contents. In the eyes of the law, however, those song files are NOT the same, because they have different histories. The rights you have to your copy do not extend to all other instances of that file, even if they are indistinguishable or not.

    It's easy to say that the lawyer view is ridiculous, but (a) that is the view that defines the law, and (b) it seems far less ridiculous after one studies the history of copyright law beginning in the 1500s.

    There is a good article on this subject:

  • by Ash Vince ( 602485 ) on Sunday May 16, 2010 @08:23PM (#32231548) Journal

    And nothing of value was lost. Seriously, who uses an inefficient cruddy program like Limewire when you've got bit torrent?

    I always wondered why everyone uses a centralised system like bittorrent to illegally download other peoples hard work when the gnutella network existed. It might be less efficient and slightly slower to find what you want, but at least they will never be able to shut it down completely. I know this may result in the death of Limewire, but that was not exactly the only Gnutella client in existence.

    The fact is the gnutella's inefficencies are also in many ways its benefits.

  • by Aranykai ( 1053846 ) <slgonser&gmail,com> on Sunday May 16, 2010 @10:44PM (#32232490)

    Its like what I started doing when I was a teenager. My summer job was mowing lawns, so I started offering a bonus service to fertilize it in the spring for a small amount. Just about everyone that took that service switched from 10 day mowing to weekly mowing cause the grass grew faster.

    I made a good chunk of change that year.

  • by bedouin ( 248624 ) on Monday May 17, 2010 @12:45AM (#32233522)

    A 10+ year fight against something most people use and have no moral objection to -- except a pushy minority with special interests.

    History repeats itself. Ban P2P and 'elite' FTPs will reemerge with private memberships. High quality private torrent trackers already exist. Instead of joining a free P2P network you'll pay a guy in China a nominal fee for access to his file distribution network. Remember how much money pirates made in places like Thailand in the 90s just by selling things for a few dollars? All of the shady rackets will return, along with even more viruses since individual files will not be checked by large groups of people, or distributed via reliable release groups.

    Ban P2P and watch real crime and extortion take place. Eventually it will be a burden on authorities to chase after 15 year olds who want the new 50 Cent CD; the RIAA won't have money to toss to lawyers either, because their income will remain just as shitty as money goes to shad(ier) sources instead.

    For a decade now the biggest sites were targeted and shutdown, yet for some reason it gets easier each year to find what I need on-line. Hmm.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 17, 2010 @02:01AM (#32233890)

    They are arseholes hanging onto their crappy "flavour of the day" popstar distribution network.

    Perhaps everyone of the millions of users should log into the RIAA and their lawyers sites, 10 x a day every day for 6 months - just to stay abreast of the current affairs.

    To find out which of the latest backwater losers they are picking on this hour.

    Aside from the "Fuck the Man (and Woman)" hysteria, here is a VERY well written article by the lawyers who do prosecute file sharers on behalf of their clients.

    It's quite a good read.

"I prefer the blunted cudgels of the followers of the Serpent God." -- Sean Doran the Younger