RIAA to Sue 405 More College Students

The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) said Tuesday it intends to file lawsuits against hundreds of college students sharing music and movie files over Internet2, the next-generation network of college universities that is intended for research of new technologies.

On Wednesday, 405 lawsuits will be filed against students at 18 universities.

Using Internet2 connections DVD-quality copies of movies can be downloaded in a mere 5 minutes. The RIAA says students have been using a file sharing application called "i2hub" to swap music and movies, and "mistakenly believe their illegal file-sharing activities can’t be detected in the closed environment of the Internet2 network."

Along with 18 universities being sued, the RIAA claims it has evidence of illegal i2hub use at an additional 140 universities in 41 states. Letters will be sent to those schools warning of the consequences associated with illicit file sharing.

"This next generation of the Internet is an extraordinarily exciting tool for researchers, technologists and many others with valuable legitimate uses," said RIAA President Cary Sherman in a statement. "Yet, we cannot let this high-speed network become a zone of lawlessness where the normal rules don't apply."

The RIAA says legal services such as Napster and Apple's iTunes cannot thrive while such piracy is occurring on university campuses. "In order to maintain the gains we’ve made, we must move quickly to address this new threat emerging from i2hub and similar applications," said Sherman.

The RIAA lawsuits follow 963 criminal and civil suits filed by the IFPI in Europe and Asia against peer-to-peer file swappers.

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