12- Year-Old sued

A 12 year old New York girl, Brianna LaHara, was sued for illegally downloading music. Of course, this was something she was unaware of, she just thought it was fun. She believed that it was OK because her mother paid a service fee for the website. When the association was asked if they knew Brianna was 12 the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) responded saying they don’t have personal information of individuals they sue. Under the federal copyright law she can get sued up to $150,000 per song, which is ridiculous. Since Brianna agreed to stop illegally downloading music the RIAA said they would lower the charges to as low as $3,000, which is still a lot of money for a little girl heedless of what she has done.

I feel as though when they found out that she was 12 and was not aware of her wrong doings they should have dropped the charges. That is like if a 2 year old grabs a toy off the shelf without the mother looking and they walk out the store with it. If they get stopped the police are not going to arrest a 2 year old for doing a crime that he is unaware of. Now if he was of age then that is a different story. So is it right or ethical to sue someone not of age and knowledge of their misconduct ? Or do we revert back to our laws and believe everyone, no matter of age, is responsible for the actions they take.

Sarah Kelley



  1. This is just ridiculous, of course the little 12 year old has no idea what it means to download a song. She hasn’t even hit puberty yet, she is a child, how can someone sue someone that young. I think it’s both an ethical and a legal issue. I am not very informed exactly what the law says about minors ion this matter, but I still find it absurd. She’s 12!!

  2. Many people download music online – illegally. But arresting and suing a 12-year old girl for it? That doesn’t make sense to me. This is not the girl’s fault, she probably had no idea what she was doing anyway. If someone would’ve told her, maybe she wouldn’t have done it. But the point is here, as you mentioned Sarah, is you are just NOT going to arrest and sue a little girl who doesn’t even know what she’s doing, and she also – of course- didn’t know this was illegal.

  3. This is completely ridiculous. Seeing this just gets me annoyed on how the media focuses on stupid things like this, as said in both comments above; people download music illegally everyday, but what happens to them? I just can’t believe that our media today would focus on something as dumb as this, yes I get that she did something illegal, but she’s 12 years old, she doesn’t know any better.

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