The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) said that it has filed 8000 new lawsuits to Internet users in 17 countries across the globe, including Brazil, Mexico, and Poland, all three of which have previously never incurred these kinds of anti-piracy lawsuits.
The United States is included in the massive crackdown as well, bringing the total number of IFPI lawsuits on these shores to 18,000 – which accounts for 58% of the 31,000 suits filed by the organization worldwide.
According to the IFPI, many of the targeted defendants are parents of minor children. The cases include both civil and criminal probes, with potential consequences of multi-thousand dollar fees and, in some countries, jail time, depending on the severity.
The IFPI says that 2300 people have already settled their case, with average payout reaching to just over $3000. The goal, according to the IFPI, is to continue to create awareness of the severity of illegal music uploading and downloading.
They also hope that, with increase in broadband penetration and more computer security dangers with P2P software that more users will turn to legal, pay-per-song music downloading like Itunes, which currently accounts for 11% of all global music sales, according to the IFPI.
Earlier this year, the music industry achieved what it is calling one of its biggest victories against digital piracy, when P2P giant Kazaa settled with the industry for $100 million and prohibition of sharing copyrighted content through the service.