LOS ANGELES--The Recording Industry Association of America has sent a cease and desist letter to ReDigi, which could be the first shot fired in a copyright battle over the sale of used downloads.
Multiple music industry sources told CNET that ReDigi, which bills itself as "the world's first online marketplace for used digital music," launched a test version of the service last month (Update: an RIAA spokesman confirmed that the trade group representing the four largest record companies sent the letter ).
Jaclyn Inglis, a ReDigi spokeswoman, said this afternoon that the company had yet to receive the RIAA letter, but added: "We are not afraid of something like this."
An RIAA spokesman was not immediately available.
ReDigi means to help people resell digital tracks the way consumers once resold their CDs.
"Tracks that are eligible for resale will be removed from the seller's computer and all synced devices," ReDigi said in a press release last month. The track is then "stored in the ReDigi cloud, and offered for sale on ReDigi's Web site. When the song is purchased, the track and license will be instantly transferred to its new owner."
Under the "first sale" doctrine, selling a CD that was legally obtained is fine. But does the law allow us to do the same with a digital download?
According to my sources, the problem that the RIAA has with ReDigi is that the company makes copies of songs that they attempt to sell for users and they can't do this without acquiring licenses. ReDigi also allegedly uses copyrighted album art, etc.
More to come