Scour announces team to take on the RIAA

It's still pleading innocence, and it's ready to fight

Scour releases details of the legal team that will defend it in the forthcoming copyright infringement lawsuit against the recording industry Wednesday.

Fred Bartlit of legal firm Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott, will lead Scour's litigation team, assisted by Professor Arthur Miller. Miller, a Harvard law professor, specialises in copyright and litigation issues.

The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) claim that the Scour Exchange (SX) application facilitates the illegal distribution of copyrighted material over the Internet.

Scour began life as a search engine that located multimedia content across the web, and was written by students from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). In April, it launched SX, allowing users to share images, audio and video files. The MPAA, RIAA and NMPA allege that most of the content exchanged over SX is subject to copyright, and are seeking damages and injunctions against Scour.

Dan Rodrigues, president of Scour, denies the claims against Scour. "Scour's services are, and have always been, completely legal, and conform with all applicable laws and guidelines including the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998," he said.

Before the lawsuit was issued, Scour had been in discussions with Sony, Warner and BMG Music, who are all plaintiffs in the lawsuit. Rodrigues previously claimed that the suit was an attempt by the entertainment industry to stop technological progress, rather than cooperating to develop a royalty-driven structure to reward artists.

The number of SX users typically online at any one time has almost tripled to 58,000 since news of the lawsuit broke, with 3.5 million files currently in circulation.

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