Gertrude Walton is probably not the last person and certainly not the first to be facing the wrath of the RIAA while this association fights against music pirates. She is a bit unusual in the sense that she is an 80-year old Granny and stands accused of downloading 700 songs off peer-to-peer (P2P) networks under the nice pseudo of smittenkitten, since elderly people do not seem to be among both the worst pirates and madly in love with top-50 songs.
She is more unusual because she definitely did not answer to the threats from the RIAA and may be facing thousands of dollars (if not more) for her unlawful life of piracy. But this is not even the point.
Where she becomes really unusual and quite a legal problem for the RIAA is when you notice that she’s been dead since December 2004. Her daughter produced a death certificate that did not stop the RIAA. They only stoppped when the press started asking questions about where it was leading.
The RIAA decided to drop the case. I don’t see why. In the Middle Ages even dead witches (or dead people accused of being witches) were hanged for the best of the community. Why not dead pirates or ghosts accused of roaming on the P2P networks?