Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 26th Aug 2011 22:06 UTC, submitted by Morgan
Legal And we have another contender for the stupidest technology-related lawsuit of 2011. Do you remember RealNetworks? The scourge of '90s web users? Lucky for us, their horrible media player is no longer a requirement on the web. Also lucky, for those of us who occasionally run into content encoded in any of Real's codecs, there's Real Alternative (download here). Well, apparently, RealNetworks is not happy with Real Alternative (download here), as the US company has completely destroyed the life of the Dutch maintainer of a website who dared to link to Real Alternative (download here).
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RE[3]: I just don't get it Thom
by Neolander on Sat 27th Aug 2011 08:46 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I just don't get it Thom"
Neolander
Member since:
2010-03-08

Actually, I think that part of this could be addressed if the fines were defined as a percentage of each person or entity's revenue, just like some taxes are.

500k€ is nothing for Google, it's a crazy lot for a single individual.

On the other hand, if you ask a megacorp to put 10% of its revenue on the table, then chances are that shareholders will actually make sure something is done.

Edited 2011-08-27 08:49 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

I suppose you could make the punishment proportional to the company size (I have to think about that one).

But still a corporation can distribute it's wealth to owners (which can be another corp) only to keep small operating cash on hand.

Therefor, if the corporation is liable for a $1M payout and an individual is liable for a $200K payout. The corporation could declare bankruptcy and the owners who committed the crime could walk away. The individual who committed the same crime would loose his house, savings accounts, investments, etc.

In the US a corporation is considered it's own legal entity. Owners are not responsible for it's debts.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

Yup, have to think about that some more.

Reply Parent Score: 1

danieldk Member since:
2005-11-18

Actually, I think that part of this could be addressed if the fines were defined as a percentage of each person or entity's revenue, just like some taxes are.


That would be crazy. Suppose I have virtually no income, and distribute Photoshop with license keys on my server. It would suddenly be very interesting for people to put copies of photoshop on their servers.

I agree there is something wrong in how the system treats individuals and small parties. But I am not sure that this is the solution.

It would, maybe, be more interesting to look at the actual loss. What is the loss if a million people download Photoshop, who could not afford to buy it in the first place?

What is the loss when somebody downloads twenty albums per month, when he only has the budget to buy five (and does so)?

Reply Parent Score: 2

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

If you have virtually no income, then you can't afford a server to put Photoshop on and its internet connection, I think.

The idea of proportional punishment is to make wrongdoers suffer in a similar way for a similar issue, regardless or how rich their are. You're right that it's not the only way to achieve this result. Prison sentences are another way. And as much as I hate this methodology, cutting home internet connections is "fair" too. It's a big loss for pretty much everyone nowadays.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[5]: I just don't get it Thom
by Radio on Sat 27th Aug 2011 13:00 in reply to "RE[4]: I just don't get it Thom"
Radio Member since:
2009-06-20

"Actually, I think that part of this could be addressed if the fines were defined as a percentage of each person or entity's revenue, just like some taxes are.


That would be crazy.
"Well, europeans are crazy then:
http://articles.sfgate.com/2010-01-11/news/17823924_1_mph-limit-spe...

Reply Parent Score: 2

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Like the following
[quote]Anssi Vanjoki, 44, has been ordered to pay a fine of 116,000 euros ($103,600) after being caught breaking the speed limit on his Harley Davidson motorbike in the capital, Helsinki, in October last year.
...
In Finland, traffic fines are proportionate to the latest available data on an offender's income.[/quote]
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/1759791.stm

There should be minimal amounts, but not max.

Just like the TopGear presenters said on TV that they wouldn't even bother getting out of speeding tickets in California and just break the limit; in response to news that in California speeding fines are ridiculously low.

Reply Parent Score: 3