Euro music org logs lawsuits

IFPI steps up piracy battle, initiates 2,000 cases

Music trade body the Intl. Federation of the Phonographic Industry unveiled a fresh wave of legal action Tuesday and warned parents that they could face stiff fines if their children download music illegally.

IFPI and its affiliate national orgs are initiating nearly 2,000 cases in Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong, Iceland, Italy, Portugal, Sweden and Switzerland.

The action is aimed at people who make available hundreds or thousands of copyrighted songs on Internet file-sharing networks.

“This is a significant escalation in our worldwide campaign,” said IFPI chairman John Kennedy. “There have now been so many campaigns to educate people that file-sharing is wrong and illegal that there is simply no excuse for people to continue.”

According to IFPI, hundreds of people have already been fined for illegally file-sharing copyrighted material, with average legal settlements of €2,633 ($3,227).

In France, a number of people have already been disconnected by ISPs following a campaign involving more than 130 injunctions.Meanwhile, the U.K.’s IFPI affiliate, the British Phonographic Industry, claimed that online piracy cost the industry £1.1 billion ($1.93 billion) in the past three years.