SBC Holds Out

SBC Won’t Name Names in File-Sharing Cases [pdf]

Most big Internet providers say that the original decision in the Verizon case essentially validated the subpoenas that the recording industry sent to other companies. SBC, however, has sued the recording industry group in California.

“We are going to challenge every single one of these that they file until we are told that our position is wrong as a matter of law,” James D. Ellis, general counsel for SBC, said yesterday in a telephone interview.

[…] Recording industry officials see SBC’s stance not as a matter of principle over privacy but as a matter of dollars from downloading. They assert that SBC is not concerned about copyright protection because the company uses the lure of music piracy to attract high-speed Internet customers.

A record industry official pointed to a past print advertisement from SBC’s Pacific Bell unit that read, in part: “Download all the music you like. And all the music you sort of, kind of, maybe even a little bit like. Go MP3 crazy. Try new music. Build a song library. Whatever.”

“Sure beats going to the record store,” the advertisement concluded.