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First off today, Paul Resnikoff at Digital Music News reports that Grooveshark has announced that it has reached a deal with Sony/ATV, the largest music publisher in the world, that ends all court disagreements between them and sets up a deal to get Sony/ATV’s blessing on Grooveshark’s service.
Sony/ATV represents songwriters, not the record studios, but it is still a potential major step forward toward legitimacy for the beleaguered service. Still, the issue doesn’t resolve ongoing legal disputes with record labels, including Sony Music, Sony’s record label, which is continuing with its lawsuit.
Grooveshark is a streaming service that allows users to upload audio files for others to listen to. It’s been widely used to stream illegal tracks but Grooveshark purports that, under the law, it is not responsible for the actions of its user, similar to YouTube. Nonetheless, Grooveshark is currently in the midst of lawsuits with all of the major record labels and several publishers. However, Grooveshark also recently claims to have reached a deal with EMI Publishing.
Next up today, Dominic Patten at Deadline Hollywood reports that, in Boston, local ABC affiliate WCVB-TV has hit back against Aereo, accusing the TV streaming service of playing a “technological shell game” to avoid liability under the copyright act.
Aereo, a TV streaming services that uses a series of tiny antennas to capture, record and stream over-the-air broadcast television. Broadcasters have sued Aereo and Aereo-like service FilmOnX in various locations resulting in mixed verdicts. WCVB-TV sued Aereo after it expanded into the market, creating a parallel suit to the one filed by major broadcasting corporations in New York.
WCVB-TV had asked for an injunction against Aereo but Aereo responded with many of the same arguments it used, successfully, in New York to avoid an injunction. That prompted WCVB-TV to respond with a scathing filing, saying that Aereo is trying to find loopholes in the law and is leaning on a ruling, namely the Cablevision ruling, that is heavily-criticized and not wholly applicable. The judge is yet to rule on the issue of an injunction.
Finally today, Jay Casteel at Baller Status writes that photographer Estevan Oriol has filed a lawsuit against the Swedish fashion company H&M and fashion house Brandy Melville over their alleged infringement of a photograph he took.
Oriol’s original photograph, entitled “L.A. Fingers” showed a female model making a hand sign that spelled out the letters “L” and “A”. It was photographed in 1995 and has been featured in magazines and other clothing lines since. However, according to the lawsuits, the defendants launched a T-shirt with a similar photograph, which Oriol feels is infringing.
It is unknown what damages Oriol is seeking.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.
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