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Music streaming giant Spotify faces massive copyright lawsuit

Music streaming giant Spotify faces massive copyright lawsuit”

Spotify had one of their biggest years to date with 2017. Midway through 2017, it was announced they had over 140 million active users and 60 million paying subscribers.

The deals have been an important new source of revenue for the music industry, which has contracted sharply over the last 15 years.

Wixen manages the rights to Tom Petty and Neil Young’s catalogues among others
Wixen manages the rights to Tom Petty and Neil Young’s catalogues among others

Wixen Music Publishing, which licenses music from about 200 artists, including Tom Petty, Neil Young, The Beach Boys, Missy Elliott, and Janis Joplin, is suing Spotify for $1.6 billion, Variety reports. Wixen, who's music catalog includes songs by the likes of Weezer, Tom Petty and The Black Keys, alleges that Spotify is using from their catalog without the necessary or proper licensing or compensation. Wixen is seeking at least $1.6 Billion as well as injunctive relief from Spotify in the lawsuit. A judge has yet to rule on that settlement, and in the meantime, Wixen has moved to file its own lawsuit, which purports "as much as 21 percent of the 30 million songs on Spotify are unlicensed", according to The Hollywood Reporter. "But Spotify failed to obtain either license type", and instead outsourced that role to the Harry Fox Agency, which the suit says "Spotify knew ... did not possess the infrastructure to obtain the required mechanical licenses and Spotify knew it lacked these licenses".

In the July cases, Spotify has argued that the claims are invalid and its use of the music is allowed under implied licenses, among other reasons.



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