In just over a year the recording industry has sued more than 6000 people for downloading music files. None of the suits have actually been tested in court but the RIAA has managed to extort an average of $3000 from about 900 of its victims. So now the Motion Picture Association of America wants to join the fun and will begin the same following the same strategy to try and stop what they see as a growing problem of illegal downloading of commercial movies.

So, this must mean that the RIAA has been pretty successful in stopping music file sharing, right? Not really. Their own research shows that 2.5 million people a day continue to trade files on just one peer-to-peer network. Which means, as usual, the lawyers are the only ones who will win in this fight. Rather than spending all the money and effort on chasing a few small fish, maybe these industries should be exploring ways to actually attract more customers. How about better product and more realistic prices?