Court blocks webcast of RIAA file sharing case against Harvard student
Sony BMG, Warner, Atlantic, Arista, and Universal Music Group have been battling an intrepid group of Harvard Law scholars after 25-year old grad student Joel Tenenbaum was hauled into court for alleged copyright infringement through illegal file sharing.
In January, Tenenbaum and his counsel moved to invite the Courtroom View Network in to webcast the trial, feeling that it would be an issue of "keen public interest." While the motion was approved in the District court, the record labels involved in the case took the issue to the Court of Appeals, which today denied the District Court's ruling.
The Appellate Court's opinion today said, "Here, we think that the limits of the district judge's discretion were exceeded; her interpretation of Local Rule 83.3 is unprecedented and, in our view, palpably incorrect."
Of the decision, Tenebaum's counsel said, "We are disappointed by the First Circuit's decision and maintain that Joel is being denied a constitutional right to a public trial in the age of the internet. We believe that Judge Gertner was within her authority to make decisions regarding her own courtroom. We intend to explore every legal option available to Joel."