The music industry’s trade group has ended a program that offered to prevent people from being sued by recording companies if the downloaders admitted to illegally sharing music online, according to court documents.
The Recording Industry Association of America launched the “Clean Slate” program in September, when it embarked on a strategy of suing individual computer users for copyright infringement.
The program required individuals to acknowledge in writing that they shared music files online and then remove the files from their computers. In exchange, the RIAA pledged not to target them in its lawsuit campaign.
While hundreds signed up, critics dismissed the program, saying the trade group could not possibly guarantee that anyone who admitted to file-sharing would not be the target of a lawsuit.
In its motion, the trade group explained that it no longer deems the program useful because it considers the public educated or aware enough now to know that they could be sued for file-sharing. The RIAA added that the number of people stepping forward to participate in the program has slowed “to a trickle.”