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RIAA: Round Two

Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) officials have put their hunting caps back on and set their sights on an additional flock of university students. As previously reported (read more), the RIAA launched a new anti-piracy effort last month by sending pre-litigation letters to 13 universities, offering 400 students suspected of illegally sharing music online the opportunity to avoid impending lawsuits. And now, the RIAA have added 405 names and 23 universities to that list. Among the fresh batch of schools targeted, the University of Wisconsin and Boston University racked up the most letters, with 66 and 50 respectively.

But not all colleges are taking the RIAA’s initiative lying down. Nebraska university officials have requested financial reimbursements for its efforts, which the RIAA flatly refused, and the University of Wisconsin has simply refused to cooperate. And while students deal with the long arm of copyright law, bloggers sound off on artist protection, listener rights, and the imminent change of music consumption.

Complete list of targeted universities:

Arizona State University, Boston University, Columbia University, Dartmouth College, DePaul University, Drexel University, Ferris State University, Ithaca College, Marshall University, North Carolina State University, North Dakota State University, Northern Illinois University, Ohio University, Purdue University, Syracuse University, University of California – Berkeley, University of California – Los Angeles, University of California – Santa Cruz, University of Maine, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of South Florida, University of Southern California, University of Tennessee-Knoxville, University of Texas at Austin, University of Wisconsin, Vanderbilt University, and Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University.

Here’s what bloggers are saying about RIAA’s initative:

“Most students don’t have the funds to procure their music legally.” — Wham,

“Although a change in music consumption is obviously on the horizon, someone must protect musicians until the change is made and music is profitable for the artist, that’s how some people feed their children.: — Josh,

“I think the RIAA fails to understand why DRM, digital rights management, is a flawed concept that actually works against them. Their publicists and lawyers want you to think that DRM is a perfectly feasible model that is designed to give the user maximum flexibility. What they fail to acknowledge is the fact that DRM is actually a model that limits your flexibility to what the major corporations want.” — Nik Agarwal,

“The RIAA is out of control.” — Annie,

“It’s heartening to see that some universities aren’t spinelessly acquiescing to the RIAA’s demands.” — Joe,

Talk: Is the RIAA’s decision to chastise listeners the correct path to copyright protection?