Throughout its legal attacks on file sharers, the RIAA has argued that the owners of ISP accounts used to share copyrighted material should be held liable, even if they had no knowledge of the alleged infringement. Judge West called the RIAA’s secondary infringement claims “untested and marginal” in his order, a characterization the labels take issue with.
Instead, the plaintiffs argue that if the defendant has “a reason to know” of the infringing activity, she should be held liable. The RIAA also points to Foster’s subscriber agreement with Cox Communications, her ISP, which the RIAA says “expressly required” her to keep others using her account from infringing copyrights.
As others have pointed out, this is one way for the RIAA to quash unprotected wi-fi.