3 Count: Sirius Business

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1: SoundExchange Sues SiriusXM Over Alleged $150 Million in Unpaid Royalties Owed to Artists and Rightsholders

First off today, Daniel Tencer at Music Business Worldwide reports that the US-based performing rights organization SoundExchange has filed a lawsuit against satellite radio service SiriusXM alleging that, due to manipulation, that the service has drastically underpaid royalties owed to artists.

According to the lawsuit, royalties that SiriusXM owes SoundExchange are set under copyright law. However, the royalties for satellite radio are determined as a percentage of revenue where web streaming plays are charged per stream, but the revenue isn’t counted. The lawsuit alleges that SiriusXM has regularly overrepresented revenue from the web streaming side of their business in order to pay less royalties on their main product.

The lawsuit alleges that SiriusXM attributed some 17.8% of its gross revenue to streaming, even though the surveys and calculations based on data usage say that percentage should be much lower. As such, SoundExchange is seeking $150 million in unpaid royalties, late fees and other costs.

2: Carin Leon’s Former Manager Sues Distribution Company for Copyright Infringement, Underpaid Royalties

Next up today, Griselda Flores at Billboard reports that Javier González, the former manager of Carin Leon, has filed a lawsuit with his label’s distributor alleging underpayment of royalties.

According to the lawsuit, González began working with the defendant, Oplaai, in 2018, where he granted an oral license to distribute recordings he and his label controlled. The deal was supposed to have a two-year limit, with both sides being able to renew annually.

However, González now claims that Oplaai has been continuing to distribute music, even after confirming that the distribution agreement was terminated. The lawsuit alleges copyright infringement for the continued distribution of music after the agreement ended, as well as unpaid royalties that are owed.

3: New York Times Considers Legal Action Against OpenAI as Copyright Tensions Swirl

Finally today, Bobby Allyn at NPR reports that the New York Times may be preparing to file a lawsuit against OpenAI as negotiations between the two companies have broken down.

Over the past weeks, the paper and OpenAI, the makers of ChatGPT, have been negotiating a license to allow the use of New York Times articles to train ChatGPT. However, those discussions have faltered, being described as “contentious” amid rumors that the paper is now exploring the possibility of a lawsuit.

If it happens, the New York Times would be the latest in a long line of high-profile lawsuits against AI companies, which includes comedian Sarah Silverman, who signed onto a class action lawsuit against the company.

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