Engelbert Humperdinck sued over cancelled show
Contract , Live Events / July 2014
USA

CONTRACT Live events industry   The Palace Theatre in Albany, New York State, is suing crooner Engelbert Humperdinck over a concert he cancelled at the last minute back in 2011. The Palace claims that it paid the agents of the singer a $20,000 advance for the show, but that his agents refused to return the money when they cancelled the concert with one day’s notice, saying that their client intended to reschedule the performance. But, the venue says, it informed Humperdinck’s people that they didn’t want a rescheduled show. The Daily Gazette reports that the lawsuit says: “On or about 28 Jun, 2011, or 29 Jun 2011, the day before or the day of the concert, defendant Mr Humperdinck abruptly and without prior warning, cancelled the agreed-upon 29 Jun, 2011, performance, despite the fact that his band was already in place, and despite the fact that plaintiff had performed all of its duties and obligations pursuant to the agreement”. The venue is now seeking over $70,000 in compensation, which includes the deposit, advertising and other product costs spent before the show was pulled, and lost ticket sales. Humperdinck’s people are yet to respond to the litigation.   http://www.dailygazette.com/news/2014/jun/03/0603_humper/

Beastie Boys win $1.7 million in Monster dispute
Artists , Copyright , Trade Mark / July 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT / TRADE MARK Artists   The Beastie Boys have prevailed in their legal battle with the Monster Energy drinks firm, and while the $1.7 million in damages rewarded by the jury hearing the Case: whlist less than the figure the band had argued for, it is substantially more than the $125,000 the drinks maker argued was a fair settlement figure. Monster had used a montage of Beastie Boys tracks in a promotional video relating to a snowboarding event the brand sponsored, which was posted shortly after the passing of Beastie Boy Adam Yauch, who had included a clause in his will prohibiting his name, image or music being used in advertising or marketing materials. Monster conceded that it had used the music without permission, but said that it had done so by mistake, after one of its marketeers mistakenly inferred from Z-Trip, the DJ the company had worked with on the party in the promotional video, that the music had been cleared. Given it had infringed by mistake, and it had removed the video as soon as the Beastie Boys made a complaint, and the promo hadn’t been so widely seen by that point, the drinks company argued that…

Marley dispute ends with no change
UK

CONTRACT / COPYRIGHT Music publishing   High Court of Justice in London has ruled that Blue Mountain Music, and not Marley’ original publisher Cayman Music (CMI), is the owner of the copyrights in a number of Marley’s songs. CMI were Marley’s original publisher but it is commonly believed that Marley claimed various friends wrote a number of his songs to avoid the contract terms with CMI which would have automatically transferred the copyrights in his work to the publisher – for ‘No Woman, No Cry’ the credit went to Vincent Ford. CMI had previously said ““It is now common ground between the disputing parties that the songs – including ‘No Woman, No Cry’ – were actually written by Bob Marley but that the music publisher’s share was never credited to Cayman Music, who have now been denied their contracted entitlement for more than 40 years”. CMI claimed these songs were not included when it sold some of its rights in 1992 to Blue Mountain Music, as Marley, who died in 1981, had penned them under other people’s names. However the judge agreed the copyright had “passed” under the 1992 agreement. In his ruling on the case, Deputy High Court Judge…

Paul Weller’s wife calls for new privacy laws
Artists , Privacy / July 2014
UK

PRIVACY Artistes   Hannah Weller, wife of Paul Weller and mother of three of his children has called for a change in the law to make it a criminal offence for newspapers to publish photos of children without the consent of their parents. The Wellers had successfully sued MailOnline after it published photos taken in California showing the one-time Jam and Style Council frontman shopping with three of his children and his wife. The singer said the photos were “plainly voyeuristic” and a “blatant impediment to the natural social progress of children”, and were taken despite him specifically asking the photographer to leave them alone. The Mail argued that the paparazzi in question did not violate any Californian laws, the photos were harmless, adding that Weller had discussed his family in interviews, his wife had tweeted photos of their twin sons, and his teenage daughter had modelled with Vogue. The High Court ruled that the MailOnline was part of a UK based media group Associated Newspapers, was governed by European privacy law regardless of where the photos were taken, and that the website had breached those laws by publishing the snaps. Weller was awarded £10,000 in damages. Hannah Weller has…

As venues face increasing complains from new neighbours – MVT calls for an urgent review of noise laws
UK

HEALTH & SAFETY Live events sector   The Music Venue Trust has launched a petition calling on the UK’s Secretary Of State for the Environment Owen Paterson to “carry out an urgent review of noise abatement legislation”, after concerns that long-standing gig venues could face closure because of a small number of noise complaints. The move comes as two venues, Night & Day in Manchester and The Blind Tiger in Brighton (right) have recently run into problems after their respective local councils received complaints from local residents about noise. In both cases it has been alleged that the complaints have come from people who have relatively recently moved into properties near the venues. And then complain. The current laws prompted a lengthy spat between the Ministry of Sound and developers Oakmayne who now have permission to build 335 apartments and 65 affordable homes on the Eileen House site in Newington Causeway near the Ministry of Sound. The nightclub in Elephant and Castle had protested against the building as they feared noise complaints could force the venue to closure and after intervention of Mayor Boris Johnson the developer agreed to alter the block to protect residents from loud music.   http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-25642151

New UK guidelines for secondary ticketing websites
Live Events / July 2014
UK

CONSUMER Live events sector   In the wake of the UK’s All-Party Parliamentary Group on Ticket Abuse recent review of the secondary ticketing market, and the APPG’s plans to table amendments to the Consumer Rights Bill, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Employment and Consumer Affairs Jenny Willott MP has issued a guidance for the secondary ticketing market, making it clear that sellers would be required to seat numbers and in some cases the face value if tickets being re-sold.  The APPG’s report did not seek an outright ban in ticket reselling but seeks safeguards to ensure resale platforms are not used by ticket fraudsters, and to ensure that sites are more transparent so vendors can be identified. In a separate matter, nine people have been arrested in Merseyside in connection with an online ticketing fraud that cost victims an estimated £116,000. The arrests, in Merseyside, were connected to concerts by the Arctic Monkeys, Beyonce, Arcade Fire and the Reading Festival. City of London ;police commander Stephen Head put estimates of online ticket fraud in 2013  at £3.7 million with over 4,000 victims. Police are currently investigating possible fraud at the Drake concert at the O2 and Beyonce’s at Manchester’s…

Tokyo’s late night dancing ban is in focus as the 2020 Olympics loom large
Licensing , Live Events / July 2014
Japan

LICENSING Live events sector   Tengri News reports that Tokyo’s status as one of the world’s clubbing capitals looks set to survive a potentially ruinous police crackdown on — of all things – dancing – with clubbers at risk of being arrested for failing to obey “No Dancing” signs at venues – which are in place because of an “an antiquated law prohibiting dancing after midnight” which is “zealously enforced by police in recent years; After decades of turning a blind eye to the clubs, a police crackdown began following the 2010 death of a 22-year-old student after a fight in an Osaka club. Hit by a wave of raids, most of the city’s venues were shut down for licensing violations, pulling the plug on Osaka’s thriving dance scene. Other cities followed. Big-name DJ Takkyu Ishino had a set broken up in Fukuoka when police crashed in and shut down the party in 2012. But with the 2020 Olympics on the horizon, Japanese lawmakers have decided the time has come to change the rules. A government committee last month agreed the Law on Control and Improvement of Amusement Business, introduced in 1948 to curb prostitution at dance halls, needed overhauling….

Claudette Robison opposes Smokey’s motion
Artists , Copyright / July 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT / FAMILY Artistes   The dispute between R&B singer Smokey Robinson and his ex-wife Claudette over the copyright to some of the singer-songwriters hits which include “My Girl” and “You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me” has moved on. After last month’s report (from Patrick Gould) that Smokey hoped to exercise his termination rights under federal copyright law to reclaim ownership over the song  and Claudette’s claim that because the songs were written during their marriage, they are community property under California state law – and she is accordingly entitled to fifty per cent of the royalties under a 1989 divorce settlement – Smokey sued Claudette in federal court seeking declaratory judgment that he may exercise his termination rights and that Claudette cannot claim any interest under California law. Smokey’s argument is that Federal law provides that Smokey  – alone – would recapture all rights in the copyright notwithstanding any agreements to the contrary” with his motion noting “On the other hand, Defendant asserts that under California community property and contract law, she is entitled to an undivided one-half interest in any recaptured copyrights Plaintiff may acquire in the future even though the marriage between Plaintiff and Defendant ended…

Termination Rights and Marital Property
USA

COPYRIGHT Artists, music publishing   From 1957 to 1986, R&B singer Smokey Robinson was married to Claudette Robinson. During that time, Smokey wrote and assigned such hits as My Girl and You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me. In 1986, the couple divorced. Today, Smokey hopes to exercise his termination rights under federal copyright law to reclaim ownership over the songs. Claudette argues that because the songs were written during their marriage, they are community property under California state law and she is accordingly entitled to fifty per cent of the royalties. Furthermore she alleges that Smokey committed fraud by not disclosing this option during divorce proceedings. Smokey has sued Claudette in federal court seeking declaratory judgment that he may exercise his termination rights and that Claudette cannot claim any interest under California law. The leading case on the relationship between federal copyright and state community property law, Rodrigue v Rodrique, 218 F.3d 432 (5th Cir. 2000), holds that an author-spouse maintains exclusive control over his works, but nevertheless the non-author-spouse is entitled to some share of the net economic benefits. Yet, this appears to stand in some conflict to an older Californian case, In re Marriage of Worth, 195…

AIM ink framework deal with BBC
Copyright / June 2014
UK

COPYRIGHT Broadcasting   The Association of Independent Music, which represents independent record labels in the UK, who have an near 30% market share of the recorded music sector,  has announced a new deal with the BBC and its commercial wing BBC Worldwide which will simplify the licensing of live recordings made by the Corporation’s TV and radio channels for future commercial exploitation. Usually the BBC needs permission from the labels of any signed artists whose live performances are recorded for TV or radio shows (although it’s standard for labels to provide such a waver for initial broadcast).  However, should either party want to then commercially exploit that content, by releasing sessions as CDs, as downloads or with other digital or ex-UK broadcast use, then a separate bespoke deal needs to be made. The standard agreement governing the commercial exploitation of BBC recordings with BBC Worldwide means that AIM member labels will have an easier structure to work with the broadcaster, and hopefully many more opportunities for making such content available beyond initial broadcast in the digital age. AIM boss Alison Wenham said: “The new agreement now means that we have in place a commercial licensing framework with the BBC that…

Beggars boss explains digital royalty change
Artists , Copyright / June 2014
UK

COPYRIGHT Recorded music, artists   Beggars Group boss Martin Mills has discussed the decision made by his company to cease paying a 50/50 royalty on streaming income to artists signed to its labels. At a MusicTank event last month, Beggars Head Of Digital Simon Wheeler confirmed that the company was reviewing its 50/50 split, saying that as streaming now accounts for 40% of the company’s total digital income and a core revenue stream, that split becomes unviable. Speaking to Billboard, Mills has now explained: “A record company such as us, needing to provide the services we do, cannot survive even paying artists 50% of net core income, let alone 50% of gross as we have been doing. As streaming becomes core income, it has to bear its share of all our costs: A&R, overhead, marketing, promotion, back office services, etc”. He added that while the final decision on what royalty will be paid on streaming in the future is yet to be made, it will be “significantly higher than the regular rate” offered by other labels, saying: “Beggars contracts actually only provide for the payment of a regular royalty on exploitation such as streaming. We have been applying the 50%…

ISPs and content industries tease out voluntary three strike scheme in the UK
Copyright , Internet / June 2014
UK

COPYRIGHT Internet   Four of the UK’s leading internet service providers are in talks with the content industries about establishing a “Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme”, which would introduce stage one of a three strikes (graduated response) system to combat online piracy. These schemes usually start with a warning – followed by second warning to stop infringing activities  – and then finally a sanction such as the suspension or ‘throttling’ of the alleged infringer’s broadband connection. The 2010 Digital Economy Act put in place a framework for a three strikes system in the UK but this has yet to be activated (and the ‘third strike’ was never defined) – in part because of resistance from ISPs and the technology sector, and a perceived reluctance of politicians to grasp this thorny ‘consumer facing’ issue. In the US, the ISPs have voluntarily introduced an voluntary ‘six strikes’ scheme called the Copyright Alert System. What is now being discussed between the recorded music and and film industries in the UK and Virgin Media, BT, Sky and TalkTalk is seemingly more similar to the US system  – one or more warnings or ‘educational’ communication(s) – but no actual punitive sanctions will be applied. In a…

Led Zeppelin face copyright claim for Stairway to Heaven 
Copyright , Music Publishing / June 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT Music publishing   Iconic rock band Led Zeppelin is being sued by a musician claiming Stairway to Heaven rips off the opening riff of his band’s song. Mark Andes, the founding bassist of Spirit, is filing a lawsuit claiming the introduction to Zeppelin’s 1971 anthemic song is very similar to Spirit’s song, Taurus. Andes is seeking an injunction to block the impending re-release of Led Zeppelin’s fourth album, on which Stairway appears, so that guitarist Randy California, who wrote Taurus, gets a co-writing credit on the song. It is understood California’s estate is also a party to the claim,  Before California died in 1997, he told a reporter: “I’d say it was a rip off. And the guys made millions of bucks on it and never said ‘Thank you’, never said, ‘Can we pay you some money for it?’ It’s kind of a sore point with me. Maybe someday their conscience will make them do something about it.” In order to prove copyright, Andes has to prove that the songs are virtually identical and that Led Zeppelin had access to the source material. Led Zeppelin’s first concert in America was as Spirit’s opening act in 1968, the year in which Taurus was released. The two bands also…

NMPA sues two lyric websites
Copyright , Music Publishing / June 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT Music Publishing   The US music publishing sector’s trade group, the National Music Publishers Association, has confirmed it has begun legal action against two lyric websites which it says continue to prolifically publish lyrics without licence. Whilst a long term problem, The NMPA has more recently increased it’s efforts in this regard of late, targeting in particular those entities that they see as developing -funded business models  around their copyright infringing websites. Rap Genius was high on the target list last year, but it has subsequently started doing deals with the US publishers, including the NMPA itself. But similar efforts to do deals with some of the other lyric sites have not gone so well, resulting in the litigation against SeekLyrics.com and LyricsTime.com. Confirming his organisation was now going legal against these two sites, NMPA President David Israelite told reporters: “Litigation is a last step. Our goal is to insure that lyric sites and songwriters become partners through licensing. This is not a campaign against personal blogs, fan sites, or the many websites that provide lyrics legally. We are targeting sites that engage in blatant illegal behavior, which impacts a songwriter’s ability to make a living”.   http://www.mi2n.com/press.php3?press_nb=174296

Sugarman claim echoes Marley battle
Copyright , Music Publishing / June 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT Music Publishing   In a case that echoes the recent spat between Cayman Music and Blue Mountain Music over a handful of songs widely believed to have been written by Bob Marley in the early 1970s, but which at the time were credited to his friends, in the case of ‘No Woman, No Cry’ the credit went to Vincent Ford. It has long been speculated that Marley did this to circumvent his contractual commitments to Cayman Music, Now Sixto Rodriguez, the subject of the Oscar-winning documentary “Searching for Sugar Man,” has been pulled into a lawsuit over songs on an album he released in 1970. The dispute centres on ownership of the songs on “Cold Fact” and contracts between Rodriguez and two music companies. Gomba Music Inc. is suing Interior Music Corp. in Detroit federal court, claiming it owns the copyright to the songs penned by Rodriguez, not Interior. The lawsuit says the musician concealed his writing role to sidestep a publishing agreement he had with Gomba   http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/entertainment/2014/05/29/searching-for-sugarman-star-sixto-rodriguez-sued-for-copyright-infringement/  and http://www.musiclawupdates.com/?p=5794

Digital royalty rates under the microscope in the USA
Artists , Copyright , Record Labels / June 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT Artists, record labels   Elsewhere in the USA, A2IM, the organisation that represents indie record labels have criticised Sony and Universal Music Group in “the fight over digital dollars”. The American Association of Independent Music, whose artists include Mumford & Sons, Taylor Swift and Adele, argues that Universal and Sony are in effect a de facto “duopoly”— and use their dominance to grab a disproportionate share of streaming music royalties. Streaming services just have to deal with Sony and UMG, who control well over 50% of the recorded music sector (and yes – EU and US regulators let that happen!). The group, which represents around 325 indie labels in the US, has been lobbying lawmakers to take a fresh look at music licensing and outlined its issues in a filing submitted to the federal Copyright Office: The New York Post say that A2IM contends that the streaming music business “is essentially a zero-sum game: The music majors use their distribution muscle to extract the lion’s share of dollars from services such as Spotify and Pandora, leaving the indie labels to settle for whatever is left”. SoundExchange is making a push to change how pre-1972 recordings are treated is the U.S, The Washington D.C. based collection society…

Beastie Boy in court for Monster infringement case
Artists , Copyright , Image Rights / June 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT / IMAGE RIGHTS Artistes, marketing   Fresh from their settlement with Goldieblox – the toy company who used one of their songs without permission – the Beastie Boys’ legal battle with the Monster Energy Drink has finally reached the courts in the US. The rap group sued the energy drink company in August 2012, just a few months after the death of Beastie Boy Adam Yauch, who had included a clause in his will that prohibited the use of his music, image or any other artistic creation in advertising.  The suit reads, “The text accompanying Monster’s internet postings, video and MP3 conveyed to consumers the impression that Beastie Boys permitted the use of their name and intellectual property, and participated in connection with Monster’s promotion of its products and events.” Moreover, it says, the Beastie Boys believe and allege Monster infringed on their copyrights “with a wilful disregard of the harm to” the group and it did it “wilfully, maliciously, and oppressively.” The group’s lawsuit claims that the drinks company used their music in videos and downloads without permission, and is seeking damages of $150,000 for each infringement. The lawsuit adds: “The public was confused into believing that plaintiffs sponsored, endorsed…

Joan Jett drops trademark lawsuit against US retailer Hot Topic
Artists , Trade Mark / June 2014
USA

TRADE MARK Artists Law360 reports that Joan Jett has reached a settlement with US clothing retailer Hot Topic over the allegedly unauthorised use of her label Blackheart Records’ logo on a line of lingerie, Lingerie for Girls Who Rock & Roll”. According to Jett’s complaint, filed last June, Hot Topic had legitimately distributed products made by Blackheart itself for more than a decade, but then started using the company’s logo on its own range of underwear without permission. This, said Jett, constituted false advertising, unfair competition and was an attempt to trade of the “substantial goodwill associated” towards the record label. Hot Topic said in response at the time that it had compensated Jett “with mutually agreed-upon license agreements for the sale of t-shirts featuring her image”, arguing that Jett had actually given up her trademark on the logo anyway.   http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/6084878/joan-jett-settles-blackheart-hot-topic-lawsuit

Gregg Allman reaches settlement with filmmakers
Contract , Image Rights / June 2014
USA

CONTRACT, IMAGE RIGHTS Artists, film Gregg Allman has settled his recently launched legal action, which was an attempt to halt the production of a film based on his 2012 autobiography. This followed the death of a camera assistant on the movie, Sarah Jones, who died when she was hit by a train during filming. The accident occurred on 20 Feb during the filming of a dream sequence involving a bed being placed on train tracks. The bed was to be passed by two trains, but a third appeared un expectedly, striking Jones, who was killed, while several other members of the crew were injured by flying debris. Investigators have said that the operator of the tracks on which the accident occurred claims that the production company did not have proper permission to film there. A decision is yet to be made on whether or not anyone will be charged over the incident. Following the accident, actor William Hurt, who was playing Allman, quit the film, and the production company, Unclaimed Freight Productions, postponed shooting indefinitely. However, there are now plans to begin filming again in June. In his lawsuit, Allman says that the company has lost its right to make…

CJEU upholds ‘right to be forgotten’
Artists , Privacy / June 2014
EU

PRIVACY Artists   The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled Google must amend some search results at the request of ordinary people in a test of the the application of the so-called “right to be forgotten” on the search giant. In a now already criticised ruling, the CJEU  said links to “inadequate, “irrelevant” and outdated (“no longer relevant”) or excessive data should be erased on request. The board of 13 judges ruled that information could be suppressed under the 1995 Privacy Directive and subject to data protection rules, even if it was ‘true, accurate and lawfully published’ saying “[T]he activity of a search engine consisting in finding information published or placed on the internet by third parties, indexing it automatically, storing it temporarily and, finally, making it available to internet users according to a particular order of preference must be classified as ‘processing of personal data’ within the meaning of Article 2(b) [of the Data Protection Directive] when that information contains personal data and, second, the operator of the search engine must be regarded as the ‘controller’ in respect of that processing, within the meaning of Article 2(d).”   According to the Court: “the operator of a search engine is obliged to remove from the list…

Cavern Club plea to Seminole Tribe leader in continuing trademark dispute
Live Events , Trade Mark / June 2014
UK

TRADE MARK Live events sector Owners of the modern day Cavern Club in Liverpool have appealed to the Council Chairman of the Seminole Tribe Of Native Americans in Florida in a bid to end a long-running trademark dispute in the US – as the Tribe own a very valuable US trade mark for the Cavern Club – registered in 1994 by the Hard Rock Café Group – which was subsequently acquired in 2007 by the Seminole Tribe Of Native Americans in a $965 million deal. Now, the Cavern Club have ‘reached out’ to James E Billie, Council Chairman of the tribe, and also a Grammy-nominated musician himself, performing as Chief Jim Billie, asking the ultimate overseer of the Hard Rock business to intervene. Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Cavern Club director Bill Heckle said: “We are sure that as a musician Chief Jim Billie will see the history and the right to our claim. This trademark row began long before the Seminole Tribe took ownership of the Hard Rock, so we don’t consider it’s of their making. If Chief Jim Billie instructs the Hard Rock to try to see it our way not only will right be done but we’ll…

Electric Picnic dispute settled
Contract , Live Events / June 2014
Ireland

COMMERCIAL, CONTRACT Live events sector   The founder of Ireland’s Electric Picnic festival, John Reynolds, has settled his legal action against the company that now operates the Electric Picnic. Reynolds took legal action against Festival Republic Dublin, alleging breach of a March 2009 shareholders agreement and oppression of the petitioner’s interests. Reynolds argued that management decisions made by Melvin Benn, the chief executive of FRD, relating to the 2012 and 2013 festivals were damaging to Reynold’s POD Music Ltd, the 100 per cent shareholder of EP Republic Ltd, but were to the benefit of the FRD Group. In 2009 FRD paid €4.2m on acquiring a 71 per cent stake in EP Festivals Ltd, then a subsidiary of POD. Reynolds also claimed he was kept out of volume discounting on sales of tickets and lost out as a result – estimating a discounting sum of €450,000 was involved over the five Electric Picnics between 2009 and 2013 which had a direct impact on the value of his shareholding. Reynolds had previously secured an order requiring Ticketmaster to provide him with information about volume discounts paid on the sale of tickets for five Electric Picnic festivals up to 2013. In response FRD alleged Mr…

Here come some new exceptions
Copyright / May 2014
UK

COPYRIGHT All areas   “After a lengthy two-year legislative process, the UK is nearly ready to drag its copyright law into the digital era. The country’s Intellectual Property Office has published the final version of copyright exceptions that make “it legal to rip CDs and otherwise shift formats”. As of June 1st, Brits can copy media as much as they like for personal use. Institutions can also make duplicates for backups or research, and the Secretary of State can tell copyright holders to make content accessible if paying for an alternative format isn’t practical. Out-and-out piracy is still forbidden, of course, but the new measures should let locals modernize their media collections without feeling a twinge of guilt”   The Government has finally issued an extensive pile of paperwork dealing with its implementation of the new Exceptions recommended by the Hargreaves report. There are to be five separate exceptions, dealing with: –          what used to be called private copying and what we must now learn to call Personal Copying for Private Use –          Quotation and Parody; –          Public Administration; –          Research, Education, Libraries and Archives; and –          Disabilities.   While the process that has led to these drafts has been…

Wrexham pub banned from playing music until licensed
Copyright , Live Events / May 2014
UK

COPYRIGHT Live events   Mr Justice Nugee has banned the proprietors of a Wrexham cafe from playing recorded music because of the lack of a proper licece. Matthew Arnold and Amy Duckett, trading as the Yales Cafe were caught playing music there without a suitable licence. In addition to the ban, which extends to any premises they run, they were ordered to pay a legal costs bill of £1,789, which must be paid within 14 days. The action was brought by Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) – a PPL inspector found playing music on the premisesm including Get Lucky by Daft Punk ft Pharrell Williams, Eat Sleep Rave Repeat by Fatboy Slim and Laura Palmer, by British band Bastille without a PPL licence. PPL’s solicitors had sent letters to the premises informing them of the nature and extent of PPL’s repertoire and the fact the playing in public of sound recordings without PPL’s licence or permission constitutes infringement of its copyright, and inviting them to acquire a licence – which they failed to do before the High Court action. http://www.newsnorthwales.co.uk/news/132600/music-ban-and-legal-bill-for-wrexham-bar.aspx

UK sets minimum standards for collection societies
UK

COPYRIGHT Music publishing, recorded music   The UK has introduced new legislation that gives formal legal backing to the ‘minimum standards’ for collecting societies that were originally published by the Intellectual Property Office back in 2012 on the back of the government-commissioned Hargreaves Review of copyright laws. The IPO minimum standards document sets out certain rules for UK collecting societies – including those that represent music rights owners where collective licensing applies – with regards transparency and complaints procedures, mainly with a view to protecting the interests of licensees, and trying to make the collective licensing process a little easier to understand. The IPO’s press relase says that new regulations for collecting societies will offer greater clarity for people using copyright works in their business: Pubs, bars and shops that require a licence to play music or schools who photocopy copyright material will find to find their legal rights easier to understand as changes to the law came into force on 6 April 2014: Last year UK collecting societies collected a total of £1 billion in licence fees for their members. Following discussions with Government, many collecting societies have already put in place their own Codes of Practice which set out minimum…

Bob Marley songs dispute heading for high court
USA

COPYRIGHT Music publishing   Cayman Music and Blue Mountain Music are set to go to the High Court to settle the dispute over a handful of songs widely believed to have been written by Bob Marley in the early 1970s, but which at the time were credited to his friends, in the case of ‘No Woman, No Cry’ the credit went to Vincent Ford. It has long been speculated that Marley did this to circumvent his contractual commitments to Cayman Music, his original publisher, which had signed Marley in 1967. Confirming that the long-running dispute was now heading to court, Cayman said in a statement earlier his week: “It is now common ground between the disputing parties that the songs – including ‘No Woman, No Cry’ – were actually written by Bob Marley but that the music publisher’s share was never credited to Cayman Music, who have now been denied their contracted entitlement for more than 40 years” concluding  “On 12 May this fascinating and unique story involving a complex cast of characters, the most successful black artist of all time, and his most famous song, purportedly stolen from its rightful owners before it was even recorded, may be one…

Pandora face pre-1972 copyright action from major record labels
Copyright , Internet / May 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT Sound recordings, internet, broadcasting   The major record labels are now suing Pandora for exploiting sound recordings made prior to Feb. 15, 1972. Last September, a similar lawsuit was filed against Sirius XM. The RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) explains that the claim arises as sound recordings didn’t begin falling under federal copyright protection until 1972 and therefore the streaming service might not be able to rely upon blanket licences from SoundExchange, the performance rights organization that collects digital and satellite royalties on the behalf of sound recording copyright owners. The record labels are testing this belief, now asserting New York state misappropriation claims over older music being streaming on Pandora saying “Pandora’s refusal to pay Plaintiffs for its use of [Pre-72] recordings is fundamentally unfair” and the companies say in their complaint “Pandora’s conduct also is unfair to the recording artists and musicians whose performances are embodied in Pre-72 Recordings, but who do not get paid for Pandora’s exploitation of Pre-72 Recordings.” http://www.theregister.co.uk/2014/04/18/record_labels_sue_pandora_over_vintage_song_royalties/

Manolito is not the next Spanish summer hit
Spain

COPYRIGHT Internet, recorded music, music publishing   The Court of Appeal of Madrid published its judgment in the controversial Pablo Soto case. In Spain, music is one of the creative industries that has been most affected by piracy, suffering not only from illegal downloads but also from the unfair competition of P2P platforms, which are not generally liable for the unlawful activities of their users. This case started in 2008 when Promusicae (the collecting society representing the music producers in Spain) together with Universal Music Spain SL, Warner Music Spain SL, Sony BMG Music Entertainment Spain SA and EMI Music Spain SA brought an action before the Court of First Instance of Madrid against Mr Pablo Soto Bravo and the two companies solely directed by him, namely OPTISOFT SL and PIOLET NETWORKS SL plus the company M PUNTO 2 PUNTO TECHNOLOGIES SA. The plaintiffs sought removal of Blubster, Piolet and Manolito both in their free-of-charge and pay-for versions. These sites consisted of an advanced development of the P2P protocol, whereby the search and the sharing of contents are decentralized, meaning that they can be run on the internet within the users’ computers, once those applications are downloaded or bought from…

Photography spat puts snapper’s rights in the frame
Artists , Copyright / May 2014
Australia

COPYRIGHT Artists   When Sydney based photographer Rohan Anderson spotted one of his pictures on the Facebook page of  Florida-based alt-rock group Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, he was hoping that he might be credited and wondered why the band had posted – without permission or attribution –  a cropped and filtered version of his photo of their guitar player and indeed Anderson wanted to have that version taken off the band’s Facebook page. Having now added a credit, what followed was a Facebook exchange with the band claiming “You have no legal claim as the photo is credited and is not posted for a monetary gain and features our likeness and image not yours. Also you have just got your self banned from any festival or show we ever play again in that region for life! Congrats!” Anderson, a student at New South Wales University, asked one of his visiting lecturers (who happened to be a copyright  lawyer) to confirm his understanding that he did indeed own the copyright in his images he had taken – which he did – and Anderson, 22, told Digiday that this is not the first time he’s had to ask a band to either credit his work or take…

ARTICLE LINK: Interview with veteran music attorney Lee Phillips
Copyright / May 2014
USA

COPYRIGHT All areas   “With almost a half-century under his belt since starting in private practice, music and entertainment attorney Lee Phillips has seen it all, but even he is amazed at the transformation in the record industry over the past decade and a half” With clients including Barbra Streisand, Neil Young, Brian Wilson, Burt Bacharach, the Eagles, Kenny Loggins, Steve Perry and Tracy Chapman, it’s an interesting read in the Hollywood Reporter http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/music-attorney-lee-phillips-labels-696356

The (Dead) Mouse that roared at Mickey
Artists , Trade Mark / May 2014
USA

TRADE MARK All areas, artistes   It was reported in several news outlets  that Disney Enterprises, Inc. will likely oppose a U.S. trade mark application filed on behalf of Canadian DJ and electronic music artist Deadmau5 (aka Joel Thomas Zimmerman). Deadmau5’s U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published trade mark application includes the design of a mouse’s head, which might be viewed as slightly similar to Disney’s iconic Mickey Mouse character in as much as it IS a cartoon mouse. The two marks though portray very different images to each other – the ‘wholesome’ Mickey Mouse image – and the dance music orientated (with its drug connotations) DJ and dance music world. One of Disney’s concerns may well be that the Deadmau5 application covers a broad range of goods and services including electronic devices (IC 009), off-road bicycles (IC 012), printed publications (IC 016), leather goods (IC 018), clothing (IC 025), toys (IC 028), food preparations (IC 030), beverages (IC 032), and entertainment services (IC 041).  The application was accepted by a USPTO examining attorney and published on March 4, 2014. Less than a week from being granted registration, counsel for Disney filed a 90 day Extension Request pursuant to 37…

Prince – the Legend and the Label kiss and make up
USA

CONTRACT Artists, sound recordings   Since the infamous fallout between Prince and his record label Warner Bros, which resulted in Prince changing his name to a symbol that was virtually impossible to pronounce, the legend and the label appear to have kissed and made up. The pair have partnered up and the new deal will see the re-mastered re-release of the album “Purple Rain” in the midst of its 30 year anniversary, with new material also hinted at by Prince, with his new backing group 3rd Eye Girl. However, and perhaps most importantly (because Prince has sold approximately 14 million albums through Warner Bros.), at the heart of the deal lies the transference of ownership in Prince’s back catalogue currently with Warner Bros…. but now moving to Prince. At first glance it may appear as though Warner Bros. were unprecedentedly keen to get the artist back on side and rid themselves of the ‘slave-masters’ title he’d once given them. Yet, on closer inspection, a piece of American Copyright Legislation made in 1978 may have acted as the initiator and mediator. Subject to certain conditions, this particular legislation allows creators to reclaim ownership of their copyrighted work, if it was previously…

Warners settle digital royalty class action, but Paisley sues Sony for underpayments
Artists , Contract / May 2014
USA

CONTRACT Artists, recorded music   Another digital royalties settlement seems to have been reached after Warner Music Group agreed to pay $11.5 million to settle a class action lawsuit that alleged the WMG failed to properly credit royalty payments to class members from the exploitation of digital downloads and mastertones of recordings under certain contracts. Sony have already settled a similar action. The plaintiffs, named as the members of Sister Sledge, Ronee Blakley; Simone Johnson Risko; Emlio Castillo; Mikael Johnston; and Gary Wright claimed Warner Music Group failed to provide proper royalty payments to them from digital downloads and mastertones and claimed the exploitation of digital downloads and mastertones should be considered a “license” instead of a “sale” resulting in a far higher share of income to artists. To compensate class members for downloads/mastertones that have already been the subject of a royalty payment, Warner will make available $11.5 million for settlement for income generated between January 1st 2009, and December 31st, 2012. The parties have stipulated that the total U.S. sales by WMG of subject masters as downloads and mastertones for the settlement class for the period is more than $381 million. As defined by the class action settlement, “Royalty Rate Basis” means a calculation based on…

All age events back on track in Melbourne
Licensing , Live Events / May 2014
Australia

LICENSING Live events industry   “All-ages” gigs are set to return to some of Melbourne’s music venue under changes made by the state government. The new laws, which came into effect in April, remove the requirement for liquor licensees to get approval to host alcohol-free under-age and all-ages live music events in licensed venues under the previously bureaucratic procedure that requited  venues to apply for an all-ages, alcohol-free event giving at least 45 days notice – often an impossibility given touring schedules, and a costly administrative burden. State Minister for Liquor and Gaming Regulation Edward O’Donohue said the changes removed onerous paperwork saying ”Venues across the state, like the famous Corner Hotel, are able to host under-age shows without the paperwork and costs that had previously made them too expensive and time consuming to contemplate,.’ It is estimated that live music contributed $301 million towards Victoria’s economy in 2009-10, supporting 15,000 jobs. Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/allages-gigs-to-return-to-rock-venues-after-changes-to-law-20140415-36pvk.html

Christ’s passion stumped by Council’s decision
Licensing , Live Events / May 2014
UK

LICENSING Live events industry   A planned Easter performance of Christ’s Passion was refused a licence by Oxford city Council after the Licensing Authority mistook the play for a sex show. The performance, which tells the story of the crucifixion of Christ, had been planned for Good Friday by St Stephen’s House Theological College and Saints Mary and John Church in Oxford. However Licensing team Leader Julian Alison admitted that he did not realise that the performance was a religious event and a local councillor said that that the Authority was worried that staging the show without a licence would be an offence. The Passion was cancelled at short notice. A Passion play is a dramatic performance of the Passion of Christ, depicting the trial, crucifixion and death of Jesus. The name comes from the Latin verb ‘pati’ – meaning ‘to suffer’. The Oxford performance was previously held in 2012, without a licence, when an audience of some 200 watched Mischa Richards, playing Jesus, haul a wooden cross from Cowley Road Methodist church to Saints Mary and John. This year, the organisers decided to stage a repeat, but were told they must apply for a council licence – and were…

Extortion and Theft added to the list of Jay Z’s ‘99 Problems
Artists , Criminal Law / May 2014
USA

CRIMINAL LAW Artists, sound recordings   Chauncey Mahan, a producer who worked with rapper Shawn Carter, better known as Jay Z, between 1998 and 2002 was detained and taken into an LAPD station for questioning on 18 April 2014, for allegations of theft and extortion. The allegations centre on the fact that the producer was apparently in possession of several master recordings of Jay Z’s work, valued to be at the least worth $15 million. The issue being that Jay Z and ‘his people’ were under the impression that the master recordings in question had been lost when they went missing in 2002. Things appeared to sour quickly for the producer when he involved the entertainment company that is famous for its concert sales, Live Nation. Live Nation created its strong link to Jay Z in 2008, when it partnered with the 17 time Grammy Award winning rapper to create the global entertainment company and record label, Roc Nation, distributed by Universal Music Group. Mahan is said to have contacted Live Nation stating that he was in possession of several master recordings and that Live Nation could acquire these for a mere $100,000.00. But Mahan attempted to justify his price…

Sorry Mrs Jackson; Michael Jackson’s mother ordered to pay AEG court costs
Artists / May 2014
USA

NEGLIGENCE Artists   Leeza Panayiotou writes that Michael Jackson’s mother has been ordered to pay AEG Live’s costs of successfully defending a negligence claim over Michael Jackson’s death. The ruling comes following the claim Mrs Jackson brought against the concert promoters of Michael Jackson’s 2009 comeback tour “This Is It”.  Mrs Jackson brought the claim against AEG in light of the fact that they hired and paid Conrad Murray (the Cardiologist and Doctor who was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter) to supervise and assist Michael Jackson’s health care. A jury found that AEG were not negligent in hiring Murray due to the fact that at the time of hiring, Murray was neither unfit to do his job nor an incompetent medical professional, leaving AEG to assume that a licensed Doctor would administer safe health care and treatment. Katherine Jackson’s legal team were not granted leave to appeal the jury’s decision on this matter. While AEG’s costs have yet to be finalised, they had initially requested costs in excess of $1 million. A Judge ruled in line with Mrs Jackson’s legal team that this amount was excessive and ruled that costs should be in the region of $800,000.00. Mrs Jackson’s legal…

War Horse musicians fail to get their jobs back
UK

EMPLOYMENT LAW Live events sector   Five musicians who were in the live orchestra for the London theatre shows of ‘War Horse’ have failed in a bid to get their jobs back after being made redundant and replaced by pre-recorded music. The musicians, backed by the Musicians Union, argued that their cutting from the production breached contracts they had with the show’s producer the National Theatre, and in an initial action the musicians attempted to get an injunction to force the NT to reinstate them pending a full hearing on the breach of contract dispute. However the judge in the case, Mr Justice Cranston, said that he wasn’t persuaded to issue the interim order, even though he thought the claimants’ wider case would be “strong” if and when it reached court. Neyire Ashworth, Andrew Callard, Jonathan Eddie, David Holt and Colin Rae – who had been with the hit show since 2009 – had their roles cut back in March 2013 to just a few minutes per performance before being made redundant. The National Theatre said the decision to cut live music from the show was made for artistic and financial reasons. According to the BBC,  the musicians’ legal counsel…

US lawsuit to put the spotlight on festival volunteers
UK
USA

EMPLOYMENT LAW Live events sector   A class action lawsuit in the States has put the focus on the use of volunteer labour at music festivals, something many large scale music events depend on. According to ClassAction.org, a new lawsuit is aimed at Live Nation and its festival promotion partner Insomniac Events, and has been brought by an Elizabeth Valladares, who volunteered at the Californian edition of dance music festival Nocturnal Wonderland in return for a free ticket to the festival The plaintiff claims that the event’s organisers violated America’s Fair Labor Standards Act by recruiting volunteers to “carry out the work of paid employees”. Federal labor law defines a volunteer as an individual who “performs hours of service for a public agency for civic, charitable, or humanitarian reasons, without promise, expectation or receipt of compensation for services rendered”. ClassAction also note that California’s state labor laws would also apply to workers. The lkawsuit alleges that Valladares spent the entire time at the festival (12.30pm to 02.30am) in the general store selling goods to customers, except when taking a single meal break, and had no time off to enjoy the festival. The lawsuit claims Insomniac is taking advantage of volunteers’ love for…

Kylie dancers get paid after outcry
Artists , Employment Law / May 2014
Australia

EMPLOYMENT LAW Artists   Warner Music Australia has agreed to pay the dancers who appeared with Kylie Minogue in her new ‘I was Gonna Cancel‘ video and those who performed during a performance at the Logie Awards at least the legal minimum wage for Australia. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, a number of professional dancers were asked to work on the eleven hour video shoot for free, or below the standard rate. After complaints, some were then offered AUS$100 (about £55). Meanwhile, the dancers who appeared at the Australia TV awards ceremony were offered AUS$700 (£385) for their time. Director of the Equity Australia union Sue McCreadie said that Warner Music and the production company behind the video had now agreed to pay legal minimum rates to all of the 30 affected dancers for both performances. This ranges from AUS$174 (£95) to AUS$448 (£246) for the video (depending on each dancer’s experience) and up to AUS$1156 (£636) for the Loogie Awards show. http://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/music/warner-music-finally-gets-in-step-on-payments-to-kylie-minogues-dancers-20140429-zr1dn.html

Paul Weller wins privacy action against the Mail Online
Artists , Media , Privacy / May 2014
UK

PRIVACY Artistes, media   Paul Weller has won £10,000 damages after a number of pictures of his 16 year old daughter Dylan and then 10 month of twins John-Paul and Bowie were used on the Mail Online. The High Court in London ordered Associated Newspapers to pay the sum after Weller complained of an invasion of privacy on behalf of his family. Seven paparazzi photos were published in October 2012 under the headline “A family day out: Paul Weller takes wife Hannah and his twin sons out for a spot of shopping in the hot LA sun”. The couple said the shots were “plainly voyeuristic” : A paparazzo had followed the family on a shopping trip in Santa Monica, California, and took photographs without their consent despite being asked to stop. In court, Associated Newspapers argued the images, in which the children’s faces were not pixellated, were entirely innocuous and inoffensive and the Wellers had previously chosen to open up their private family life to public gaze to a significant degree. The High Court found that whilst the images could have been published legally in California, their appearance in the UK violated the right to privacy enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights and…

Australia senator proposes nationwide anti-scalping laws
Consumers , Live Events / May 2014
Australia
UK

CONSUMER Live events sector   In Australia a senate Economics References Committee (SERC) member has called for a national law to be introduced to tackle the “scourge” of ticket touting. The independent senator for South Australia, Nick Xenophon, made the plea following the release of a SERC inquiry report on the subject, which made recommendations based on evidence supplied by 21 parties. Xenophon instigated the enquiry after disquiet over tickets for shows such as One Direction’s Australian GTour, priced at A$79, were being re-sold in eBay for A$4,000. The Senator called for “clear national consumer protection law that brings to an end this scourge on music and sports events”. The senator is keen on measures including a cap on the price of resale tickets, ticket sales to be subject to statutory consumer protection measures prohibiting and for secondary sites to reveal the of identify sellers. He also said promoters and other primary sellers should make the public aware of the number of tickets being sold and those being passed on to others including sponsors and  secondary markets.  New South Wale has already begun the process of implementing state laws to govern the re-sale of tickets – capping any  mark up…

Live Nation settle consumer protection claim over ticket mark ups
Consumers , Live Events / May 2014
USA

CONSUMER Live events sector   Live Nation Entertainment (LNE) could be liable for up $38 million in compensation and costs following the conclusion of a class action lawsuit, brought against the company by disgruntled concert-goers in 2009. However the final cost will depend on the number of eligible ticket buyers taking up the settlement. Two music fans initially filed a lawsuit against LNE when they were charged a $6 parking fee on their ticket purchases for the 17,500-capacity PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, New Jersey, regardless of whether they intended to use the car park. Nearly 363,000 fans were covered by the settlement (in which LNE accepted no wrongdoing) and which entitles each fan to three free tickets and a $5 discount on future purchases. LNE must pay $1.7 million in legal costs and $7,500 to each of the two original claimants.  So far only 10% of eligible ticket buyers have applied under the class action scheme.   Audience Issue 171, April 2014

All Party Parliamentary Group will table legislative reform
Consumers , Live Events / May 2014
UK

CONSUMER Live events sector   The UK’s All-Party Parliamentary Group on Ticket Abuse has published the findings of its recent review of the secondary ticketing market, and says it will now table amendments to the Consumer Rights Bill, due to be debated in the House Of Commons next month with legislation to regulate ticket resale sites to follow. The APPG’s report does not seek an outright ban in ticket reselling but seeks safeguards to ensure resale platforms are not used by ticket fraudsters, and to ensure that sites are more transparent so vendors can be identified. . Amongst the Group’s recommendations are the following:   Guaranteed compensation for fans falling victim to ticket scams through resale websites, covering their costs for getting to the event. A legal requirement for resale websites to publish full information about the tickets listed through them, as well as information on the seller. A further requirement for resale websites to declare where tickets have been given directly to them from an event organiser, as well as to investigate the provenance of tickets where one individual tries to sell more than 20 for one show. Responsibility for tracking down and prosecuting those committing ticket crimes to…

Music Attorney of the Year 2014 is…
Copyright / May 2014
USA

…Jay L. Cooper received has received the distinguished “Music Attorney of the Year Award” at A&R Worldwide’s International Music Industry Awards 2014. The founder of Greenberg Traurig LLP’s LA practice, the firm announced that Cooper was recognized for “his outstanding contributions to The Worldwide Music Industry.” Cooper is Co-Chairman of the Alliance of Artists & Recording Companies and a Board member of SoundExchange. He accepted the award at the 10th annual MUSEXPO music conference held on April 9 in Los Angeles. Read more at: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1859629#ixzz2zPaAxXGy

New Book: Sorrow Will Come in the End
Copyright , Media / May 2014
UK

BOOK : A new book by Jeremy Grice titled “Sorrow will come in the end” looks particularly interesting. It’s tagline is “Legal case studies in the music, theatre and entertainment industries” and the author – who is Head of Music, Theatre and Entertainment at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts  -covers a number of now legendary cases including the lengthy ‘Apple’ trade mark dispute between the Beatles and Apple Inc, the battle between Morrissey and two other members of  The Smiths (the title is taken from a Morrissey lyric), the litigation between Stone Roses and their record label Zomba, and the dispute between Gary Kemp and three other members of Spandau Ballet, Tony Hadley, John Keeble and Steve Norman, over music publishing royalties. More on Jeremy’s website here http://jeremygrice.wordpress.com/

OSA ruling: no Czech exemption from health-spa music royalty payments
Copyright , Music Publishing / April 2014
Czech Republic
EU

COPYRIGHT Collection societies, recorded music, music publishing   The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has given judgment in Case C‑351/12, OSA – Ochranný svaz autorský pro práva k dílům hudebním o.s. v Léčebné lázně Mariánské Lázně a.s., a reference for a preliminary issue from a Czech court, the Krajský soud v Plzni.  According to the press release: A spa which transmits protected musical works to its guests by means of devices located in their bedrooms must pay copyright fees: The territorial monopoly granted to copyright collecting societies is not contrary to the freedom to provide services OSA, a copyright collecting society, holds the exclusive right in the Czech Republic to collect fees, on behalf of authors, for the use of their musical works. The company Léčebné lázně Mariánské Lázně, which manages a spa, installed radio and television sets in the bedrooms of that establishment in order to make works managed by OSA available to its guests. However, Léčebné lázně Mariánské Lázně did not enter into a licence agreement with OSA and refused to pay fees to it on the ground that, under the Czech legislation, health establishments may freely transmit protected works. OSA, being of the view that…

Lessig triumphs in fair use battle
USA

COPYRIGHT Recorded music, music publishing, broadcasting, internet   Back in August 2013 Lawrence Lessig filed a federal complaint after YouTube forced the Harvard University law professor and Creative Commons co-founder to take down a video of a lecture that featured people dancing to a copyrighted sound recording. Supported by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Lessig said: “The rise of extremist enforcement tactics makes it increasingly difficult for creators to use the freedoms copyright law gives them. I have the opportunity, with the help of EFF, to challenge this particular attack. I am hopeful the precedent this case will set will help others avoid such a need to fight.” The complaint stems from a 2010 lecture Lessig delivered in South Korea on cultural and technological innovation. He presented clips of user-generated videos showing people dancing to Phoenix’s single “Lisztomania” which was a popular meme at the time started by user “Avoidant Consumer,” who combined scenes of people dancing from several movies with the song playing in the background. The video went live last June but complaints from Viacom and Australian-based music publisher Liberation Music via the Digital Millennium Copyright Act prompted YouTube to remove Lessig’s lecture twice. Lessig filed a complaint…

The IFPI Digital Music Report 2014 shows a changing landscape for the recorded music sector
Copyright , Music Publishing / April 2014
EU
Germany
Italy
UK
USA

COPYRIGHT Recorded music   The IFPI have published their downloadable Digital Music Report 2014 – who shows that music fans’ growing appetite for subscription and streaming services helped drive trade revenue growth in most major music markets in 2013, with overall digital revenues growing 4.3 per cent and Europe’s music market expanding for the first time in more than a decade. Subscription services’ revenues were up 51 per cent in 2013, and it is estimated that more than 28 million people worldwide now pay for a music subscription, up from 20 million in 2012 and just eight million in 2010. That said, on a negative note, in the world’s second biggest recorded music market, Japan, a sharp drop in sales meant that overall global industry revenues declined by 3.9 per cent. Global revenue excluding Japan fell by 0.1 per cent. Physical format sales still account for a major proportion of industry revenues in many major markets.  They account for more than half (51.4%) of all global revenues, compared to 56 per cent in 2012.  Although global physical sales value declined by 11.7 per cent in 2013, major markets including Germany, Italy, the UK and the US saw a slow-down in the rate of physical decline.  France’s…

MP3tunes creator found liable for copyright infringement
USA

COPYRIGHT Internet, recorded music   The original MP3.com creator Robertson has lost the action brought against him by EMI who sued the new company and Robertson himself in 2007, claiming that the MP3tunes.com operation infringed its copyrights. The former chief executive was found liable for infringing copyrights for sound recordings, compositions and cover art owned by record companies and music publishers once part of EMI Group Ltd. A federal jury in Manhattan found Michael Robertson, the former MP3tunes chief executive, and the defunct San Diego-based company liable on various claims that they infringed on copyrights associated with artists including The Beatles, Coldplay and David Bowie – both for direct involvement in distributing unlicensed files and for being “wilfully blind” to other copyright infringement on his site. The court now needs to decide what damages Robertson should pay EMI for all that infringement   http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/19/us-mp3tunes-infringement-idUSBREA2I29J20140319