By Cynthia L. Webb
washingtonpost.com Staff Writer
Monday, October 11, 2004; 9:36 AM
The file-sharing wars could get even hotter if the U.S. Supreme Court decides to weighs in on whether "peer-to-peer" networks should be held responsible for their users' illegal trading of copyrighted songs and movies.
On Friday, the principal industry groups representing Hollywood and the recording studios asked the high court to "overturn a lower-court ruling that lets creators of Internet file-sharing software stay in operation. The request aims to thwart a decision that threatens to make it much harder for the industry to fight illicit online trading of music and movies," the Wall Street Journal explained. Reuters said the studios asked the court "to overturn a ruling that Internet 'peer to peer' networks cannot be held liable when their users copy music and movies without permission. Dozens of entertainment-industry companies asked the court to reverse an appeals court decision that has prevented them from shutting down networks like Grokster and Morpheus that they say encourage millions of consumers to copy music and movies for free rather than buying them."
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