Internet Copyright Infringement is a problem which is not going away any time soon. Wired has posted a great article summarizing the copyright infringement lawsuits that have defined the music copyright infringement landscape over the last year. Specifically, the following copyright infringement cases have had made a long-lasting mark on music copyright law:
Bridgeport Music v. UMG Recordings: The Sixth Circuit upheld a $88,980 judgment in favor of musician George Clinton for the use of a sample of his "Atomic Dog" in a 1998 song by Public Announcement called "D.O.G. in Me."
UMG Recordings v. Veoh Networks: A Los Angeles court found that Veoh was not guilty of contributory copyright infringement because it fell within the safe harbor provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Veoh allows users to upload videos and then streams them to others. Since Veoh expeditiously removed copyright infringing videos from its service upon notification, the court dismissed UMG's suit.
Capitol Records v. Thomas-Rasset; Sony BMG Music v. Tenenbaum: Both Thomas-Rasset and Tenenbaum were hit with large damage awards for downloading music in the RIAA's campaign of suing individual music downloaders. Thomas-Rasset was held liable for $1.9 million in damages, while Tenenbaum was held liable for $675,000.
Sweden v. The Pirate Bay: In a story that has been widely reported, four co-founders of The Pirate Bay were held liable for $3.5 million in damages and sentenced to a year in prison.
Arista Records v. Usenet.com: Another case that was decided under the US Supreme Court's Grokster precedent, Usenet.com was held liable for inducing copyright infringement for advertising users' ability to download infringing works and for providing technical assistance for the infringement of copyright rights.
In short, it was a landmark year for music copyright infringement lawsuits. If you are an artist that is looking to protect your music copyright rights, contact one of our expert music copyright infringement lawyers at 866.936.7447.