The RIAA is back at it again! And this time, instead of going after younger kids and teens, they’re going after college students. They are taking a different route with the college students by trying to persuade them to settle the disputes out of court which means less hassle for the RIAA but more money.

400 letters went out to students from 13 Universities.  The universities are to let the students know that they will be sued– but can settle out of court before the lawsuits are filed.  This is the first round of letters to go out to college students, and the RIAA plans on sending out hundreds of letters per month.


If students settle, they would have to pay a fine. I’m wondering how much that fine would actually be, because all that has been disclosed is that the amount would be lower than what it would cost to be taken to court. Students would also have to sign something saying that they won’t download music illegally anymore.

What’s even more ridiculous is that the RIAA has set up a website where students can settle this and pay their fine using a credit card.  The entire process would be completed online which makes this easy money for the RIAA.

More than 1 billion songs are downloaded illegally every month, and one study that the University of Richmond conducted found that more than half of college students download music illegally. So, obviously a good portion of those 1 billion songs are college students.

Are the students better off settling? Or should they fight it in court? Afterall, there have been several victories recently where the RIAA was ordered to pay out to some of the victims who fought back.

News Source: Reuters [via InformationWeek]