Injunction Issued Against Rio

In a story last week, we covered the efforts of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) to prevent portable MP3 players from entering the market without copy-protection measures in place. On August 16, a federal court entered a temporary restraining order (TRO) to enjoin the distribution and sale of Diamond Multimedia's Rio PMP300 portable MP3 recording device.

According to the RIAA, the court granted a motion, filed by the RIAA and the Alliance of Artists and Recording Companies (AARC), seeking a TRO based on the judge's conclusion that the organizations are likely to prevail in their position that the Rio violates the Audio Home Recording Act (AHRA). Because the temporary restraining order remains effective for a period of 10 days, the court has scheduled a hearing on the RIAA's and AARC's motion for a preliminary injunction on Monday, October 26. However, the judge commented that she is unsure if the AHRA pertains to the Rio PMP300, which Diamond Multimedia claims is merely a computer peripheral and storage device. The RIAA was also required to post a $500,000 bond to cover revenue from lost sales of the Rio during the 10-day period in the event they do not prevail in the case.

"While we are gratified by the court's action today, it is unfortunate that we had to resort to legal action to deal with this issue," said Hilary Rosen, president and CEO of RIAA. "Our preference has always been to work together with the many computer and consumer electronics companies to arrive at solutions to legitimize the commercial marketplace for digitally distributed music in a manner that protects the rights of artists [or other copyright holders]."