Prince has always taken a hard stance against the pirating of his music, but his fans have always basically understood. However, that could change now that Prince is suing 22 of his fans that knowingly circulated bootlegs of the singer’s live material.
Prince filed a 21-page lawsuit in U.S. District Court in San Francisco last week seeking $22 million in damages—$1 million from each defendant. The singer and his attorneys allege that the accused actively participated in “massive infringement and bootlegging of Prince’s material,” including sharing a 1983 Chicago set via WorldOfBootleg.blogspot.com. Most of the defendants named in the claim are anonymous, though two who have been identified—Dan Chodera and Karina Jindrova—used to operate a bootlegging fan page on Facebook.
Prince’s lawyers are asking for a jury trial, though that seems unlikely. They're also asking the return of any profit generated from the bootlegs, plus legal fees, and, if found guilty, those 22 defendants would be banned from “engaging in any further alleged violations of Prince’s rights.” Such as being super tall and standing in front of him at a concert, or badmouthing God in his presence.
Update: After news of Prince’s suit hit the press, His Purple Highness has dropped the case. According to TMZ, Prince’s lawyers say the suit was abandoned because “the bootleggers have now taken down the illegal downloads and are no longer engaging in piracy.” His representative added that Prince and his team “recognize the fans’ craving for as much material as possible but [would] prefer they get it from us directly than from third parties who are scalpers rather than real fans of our work.”