In the first such ruling in the federal judiciary in Massachusetts, a judge in Boston agreed yesterday to allow video cameras in the courtroom to provide live Internet coverage of a high-interest lawsuit against a Boston University graduate student accused of downloading music illegally.
US District Court Judge Nancy Gertner said she will allow Courtroom View Network – a New York-based company that webcasts trials, primarily in state courts – to chronicle a key hearing Jan. 22 in the suit against the student, Joel Tenenbaum, by a group that represents the US recording industry.
Hitting a little close to home. We actually heard about this case when we were at the courthouse on Tuesday. We were in an Appelate Division courtroom with a group of Asian college students getting a tour of the joint. They were so disinterested that several fell sound asleep during the demonstration and explanation, including the kid sitting in the Judge’s bench! We were mortified.
This case obviously deserves careful attention. According to our docent Tuesday, the RIAA objected to the judge’s decision to allow a netcast of the proceedings, and both sides are preparing to argue the issue. Should the netcasting proceed, we will endeavor to give readers a head’s up.