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More than 20 UK internet users pay a total of £50,000 out of court for illegally sharing songs on the web.

**http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/click/rss/0.91/public/-/1/hi/entertainment/music/4318765.stm" [Broken]**
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- Thread starter Greg Bernhardt
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CRGreathouse

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It just doesn't make sense that people are forced to pay more money than the damages that they caused.

Now I hate the RIAA as much as anyone, but I have to disagree. If the probability of being caught is less than 100%, and the worst-case payment is equal to the total price of the products taken, then taking products is always the dominant strategy vs. buying. If the worst-case payment is twice as much, taking products is only rational if the probability of being caught is less than 0.5 (assuming risk neutrality). Extrapolate as needed.

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Now I hate the RIAA as much as anyone, but I have to disagree. If the probability of being caught is less than 100%, and the worst-case payment is equal to the total price of the products taken, then taking products is always the dominant strategy vs. buying. If the worst-case payment is twice as much, taking products is only rational if the probability of being caught is less than 0.5 (assuming risk neutrality). Extrapolate as needed.

But if you download one song illegally that costs $.99 on some website you could still be sued for thousands of dollars when you really stole something that costs $.99.

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I wonder if anyone got jail time for this.

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I wouldn't be surprised if they did

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