SoundExchange, VerStandig Battle In Court Over Geo-Fencing Case As Settlement Attempt Appears Doomed
November 25, 2014 at 4:24 AM (PT)
The battle between VERSTANDIG BROADCASTING and SOUNDEXCHANGE over streaming royalty payments for "geo-fenced" Internet streams of broadcast stations continues, as SOUNDEXCHANGE attorney MICHAEL B. DESANCTIS, responding to a letter filed by the plaintiffs' attorney last week, told Judge MICHAEL F. URBANSKI in a letter filed MONDAY (11/24) that VERSTANDIG's "attempt to force SOUNDEXCHANGE to commit to a course of action on a hypothetical and ever-changing set of facts and legal theories" is unfair.
He added that the plaintiff's argument that a controversy exists for the court "merely because SOUNDEXCHANGE would have standing to sue Plaintiffs depending on what exactly they might do, which of them might do it, and how they might do it" is wrong because standing is not enough to establish whether a controversy is ripe enough for the court under the law of declaratory judgments.
In last week's letter, VERSTANDIG attorney DAVID BUTLER said that SOUNDEXCHANGE "rejected plaintiffs' proposed covenant not to sue" and asserted that "In doing so, SOUNDEXCHANGE abandoned its theory that it is the wrong defendant in this declaratory judgment action."
VERSTANDIG is in court to establish its theory that by limiting the online stream of its Active Rock WTGD (105.1 BOB ROCKS)/BRIDGEWATER, VA to a 150-mile radius, it does not owe royalties to be collected by SOUNDEXCHANGE.