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Rachel Brodsky at Spin writes that rapper Jay Z has agreed to settle a long-running legal dispute with Swiss jazz musician Bruno Spoerri over allegations that the rapper had used his instrumental in a hit track.
The allegations deal with Jay Z’s song Versus, which Spoerri claims that the song used elements of his instrumental piece Lilith – On the Way. However, Jay Z had staunchly denied the claims, which were first made in 2013.
The settlement comes days after a jury awarded the estate of Marvin Gaye $7.4 million over their claims that the hit Blurred Lines was an infringement of Gaye’s Got to Give it Up. However, the verdict has proved highly controversial and attorneys for the Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams, the creators of Blurred Lines, have vowed an appeal.
Next up today, in other Jay Z news, The Guardian is reporting that the rapper has won total control over the Swedish streaming music company Aspiro, which runs the services WiMP and Tidal.
Known in Europe as a Spotify competitor, the company has been struggling in recent months, losing $5 million in the last quarter. It’s Tidal service costs double what Spotify and most other music streaming services cost, but boasts that it streams high-quality “lossless” tracks.
The company plans to expand Tidal to some 22 countries, mostly in Europe. However, it’s numbers are currently dwarfed by competitors, including Deezer Elite, which offers similar lossless tracks to subscribers in the United States.
Finally today, in “here we go again” news, Vladimir Kozlova at The Hollywood Reporter writes that Chechen author Ruslan Zakriyev is suing James Cameron over the 2009 film Avatar, which he is claiming is an infringement of his 2002 novel SekretnoyeOruzhiye.
Zakriyev is the latest in a long line of authors to sue Cameron over the film, however, none of the lawsuits have been successful. Part of the reason is widespread proof that Cameron had been working gone the script well into the 90s, before most of the “original” works, including Zakriyev’s were published.
Nonetheless, Zakriyev is claiming that Cameron should pay him $1 billion for the infringement saying that several scenes in the movie were identical too his book. He also claims that he submitted the novel to an expert council in his local writers union and its members have agreed with his assertion.
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.