The RIAA sent its 11th wave of pre-litigation settlement letters on behalf of major labels to university campuses this week. The latest group of letters, intended to alert illegal file-sharers that they've been spotted using campus networks, total 396 sent to 22 university administrators. This brings the total to 4,553 letters sent since the initiative began last February.
As in the past, the RIAA asks university administrators to identify specific users of the universities' computer networks -- whom the RIAA identifies only by their IP addresses as having shared unauthorized music files -- and to forward the letters to those users.
The users will then have the opportunity to settle the copyright infringement claims before "John Doe" lawsuits are filed against them. If lawsuits are filed, the users will be identified and named as defendants, which may have a negative impact on their future employment, credit and professional license applications.
The latest letters were sent in the following quantities to: Auburn University (13 pre-litigation settlement letters); Brandeis University (12); Georgia Institute of Technology (16); Gustavus Adolphus College (36); Indiana State University (18); Iowa State University (13); Ithaca College (15); Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (16); Louisiana Tech University (15); Mississippi State University (15); Morehead State University (17); Rochester Institute of Technology (12); University of Arizona (14); University of California, Davis (14); University of California, San Diego (17); University of California, Santa Cruz (24); University of Dayton (16); University of Massachusetts at Amherst (30);
University of Rochester (15); University of Southern California (33); University of Washington (16); and Western Kentucky University (19).
"The record industry is partnering with a variety of innovative services to offer fans an extraordinary array of musical experiences and generate new business opportunities," says Jonathan Lamy, RIAA senior VP communications. "A number of the legal options available to students at a free or deeply discounted rate even include added social networking features, music videos, and movies. For those who ignore these great legal options and ignore years of warnings, we will continue to bring lawsuits. It's not our first choice, but it's a necessary part of the equation."