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Litigation

California court rules that Flo & Eddie have ‘no viable copyright claim against Pandora’ in pre-1972 recordings case

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United States District Judge Philip S. Gutierrez from the District Court for the Central District of California has ruled in favour of SiriusXM-owned Pandora Media against songwriters and performers Flo & Eddie (previously known as The Turtles) in the decade-long case filed against the music streaming service for allegedly failing to pay them reproduction and public performances royalties.

Flo & Eddie started in 2014 to file several lawsuits in various jurisdictions — California, New...

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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).

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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Collective Management Organisations

The MLC sues Spotify for unpaid mechanical royalties following the introduction of new bundles providing access to audiobooks

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The Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC), which administers the blanket compulsory license for the use of musical works by digital music services in the United States, has filed a lawsuit against Spotify USA Inc. in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.

The MLC alleges that Spotify has introduced new offerings that the streaming service qualified as bundles, thus leading to what The MLC believes are underreported mechanical royalties. The MLC seeks corr...

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