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Music industry sues 2,000 uploaders in Europe

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Legal

The music industry unleashed a new wave of copyright lawsuits on European Internet users on Tuesday, bringing the total sued since November to around 2,000, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI).

The lawsuits seek to impose fines on Internet users who have uploaded music files and made them available for others to download without the copyright holders' permission.

In addition to fines, the IFPI has begun testing a new legal weapon: using court injunctions to have file sharers' Internet access cut off. Already, 130 such injunctions have been requested in France, leading to over 100 Internet users being disconnected by their ISPs (Internet service providers). A Danish court ruled in February that the same sanction can be applied there, said the IFPI, which is a trade association for the recording industry.

The IFPI uses an automated search tool to pinpoint the IP (Internet Protocol) addresses of those uploading files, and then asks the relevant ISP to identify the subscriber.

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