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Litigation

Arizona court charges two individuals for running a scheme monetising the rights to songs they did not control

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Two individuals — Jose Teran, 36, of Scottsdale, Arizona and Webster Batista, 38, of Doral, Florida. — were charged in Federal Court with conspiracy, wire fraud, transactional money laundering, and aggravated identity theft.

Batista was arrested at his residence in Florida on November 18 by Special Agents with the Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation. Mid-November, a federal grand jury in Phoenix slapped Teran and Batista with a 30-count indictment.

Teran and Batista have be...

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Emmanuel is a Washington, DC-based freelance journalist, blogger and media consultant, specialising in the entertainment business and cultural trends. He was the US editor for British music industry trade publication Music Week. Previously, he was the editor of Impact, a magazine for the music publishing community (2007-2009), the global editor of US trade publication Billboard (2003-2006), and the editor in chief of Billboard’s sister publication Music & Media (1997-2003).

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Copyright & Regulation

RIAA sues AI-powered music generation services Suno AI and Udio for infringing copyrighted sound recordings

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The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) — on behalf of Universal Music Group (UMG), Sony Music Entertainment (SME) and Warner Music Group (WMG) — has filed two separate lawsuits in US federal court against two companies operating AI-powered music generation services — Suno AI and Udio — for the alleged "mass infringement of copyrighted sound recordings copied and exploited without permission."

The case against Suno, Inc., developer of Suno AI, was filed in the United States Dist...

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Litigation

Las Vegas court convicts five men for running an illegal video streaming site

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A federal jury in Las Vegas has convicted five men for their roles in running a subscription-based streaming service known as Jetflicks, which was described by the US Department of Justice as "one of the largest unauthorised streaming services in the United States."

The scheme, which is understood to have started as early as 2007, has generated "millions of dollars in subscription revenue while causing substantial harm to television program copyright owners," according to the DoJ.

“Th...

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Creative Industries

Sony Music sues Marriott over the unlicensed use of 931 songs in advertisements on social media

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Sony Music Entertainment has filed a lawsuit against Marriott International in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware in which it accuses the hotel chain of "rampant infringement" for the unlicensed use of 931 songs featured in advertisements for the brand on social media.

Sony Music said that in January 2020, it notified Marriott that "many of the Marriott Social Media Pages included videos using, without authorizsation, copyrighted sound recordings owned and/or cont...

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