Federal Judge Finds Grooveshark Violated Thousands Of Copyright Laws
September 30, 2014 at 4:36 AM (PT)
Less than a week ago (NET NEWS 9/23), ALL ACCESS reported U.S. District Judge PHILIP GUTIERREZ ruled that SIRIUSXM RADIO must pay copyright fees for pre-1972 recordings. The ruling granted summary judgment in the case brought by THE TURTLES -- MARK VOLMAN and HOWARD KAYLAN, suing as FLO AND EDDIE INC. -- alleging that the satellite service's playing of their pre-1972 music violated CALIFORNIA state laws.
Now another legal defeat has been handed down, this time to a webcaster, as a NEW YORK federal judge ruled YESTERDAY (9/29) that GROOVESHARK infringed on thousands of copyrights.
THE NEW YORK TIMES reports, "Like NAPSTER, LIMEWIRE, GROKSTER and other online outlets before it, GROOVESHARK came under fierce attack from the recording industry for hosting music files without permission. GROOVESHARK -- based in GAINESVILLE, FL, and identified in court papers by its parent company, ESCAPE MEDIA GROUP -- makes millions of songs available for streaming."
Judge THOMAS P. GRIESA ruled that GROOVESHARK was liable for copyright infringement because its own employees and officers -- including CEO SAMUEL TARANTINO and CTO JOSHUA GREENBERG, "uploaded a total of 5,977 of the labels’ songs without permission. Those uploads are not subject to the 'safe harbor' provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act," writes THE TIMES.
“Each time ESCAPE streamed one of plaintiffs’ songs recordings, it directly infringed upon plaintiffs’ exclusive performance rights,” the judge wrote in his opinion.