XM Sued By Music Publishers For Operating 'Unlawful Download Service'
March 22, 2007 at 2:58 PM (PT)
The NATIONAL MUSIC PUBLISHERS' ASSOCIATION has filed a lawsuit against XM SATELLITE RADIO, alleging XM "refuses to acknowledge the rights of or pay compensation to the music publishers and songwriters who own songs being distributed through its unauthorized digital download service." The suit, filed today (3/22) in federal court in NEW YORK on behalf of FAMOUS MUSIC, WARNER/CHAPPELL, SONY/ATV and EMI MUSIC PUBLISHING, alleges that XM "engages in massive copyright infringement through its illegal subscription digital music download service known as 'XM + MP3,'" which it says "delivers perfect digital copies of copyrighted recordings to its subscribers."
"Filing a lawsuit was our last resort, but we felt that we had no choice," said NMPA Pres./CEO DAVID ISRAELITE. "We want new technologies to succeed, but it can't be at the expense of the creators of music. All that we ask is that music publishers and songwriters be fairly compensated for their efforts."
The complaint seeks a maximum of $150,000 in statutory damages for each work infringed by XM. "XM has been profiting at the expense of others," said lead NMPA attorney DEBRA WONG YANG of GIBSON, DUNN & CRUTCHER LLP. "The XM + MP3 service constitutes pervasive and willful copyright infringement to the overwhelming detriment of copyright holders, legitimate online music services and, ultimately, consumers."
XM representatives had not responded to ALL ACCESS' request for comment by press time.