The former owner of music website AllOfMP3.com, which angered western music companies by undercutting the price of music downloads, was found not guilty of copyright infringement in a Russian court today.
Denis Kvasov was put on trial by U.S. record labels which alleged its website was not authorized to sell the budget-priced song downloads, but the company countered that it pays royalties to a Russian copyright society called ROMS. Western music labels say, however, that ROMS is not authorized to represent them. The site was once again shut down earlier last month, after facing pressure from the U.S. music industry, but quickly resurfaced as MP3Sparks.com.
Apparently, Kvasov got off because he led Mediaservices – AllOfMP3’s parent company – between 2003 and 2005, before a new copyright law regarding digital downloads came into effect in September 2006. Therefore, the site was legal in Russia. A local official with the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, which is representing the copyright holders in the case, expressed his discontent with the ruling and said it would appeal the decision.