Report: UMG To Appeal Promo CD Ruling
June 13, 2008 at 9:22 AM (PT)
Last week, a judge ruled against UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP, deciding that reselling promo CDs on EBAY is perfectly legal (NET NEWS 6/12). WIRED MAGAZINE writes UNIVERSAL plans to appeal the decision, and is "confident that [it] will prevail, according to DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS.
Music reviewers are occasionally paid only in free promo CDs, which they often end up selling to used CD stores to augment their incomes. AUGUSTO (also known as "Roast Beast Music Collectibles") routinely scoured used CD stores in LOS ANGELES, hunting for promo CDs, which typically have a slot sliced out of the case or some other marking.
Many labels have moved to an electronic distribution system for sending music to journalists, cutting costs and eliminating the possibility of these sorts of resale, which the judge ruled are legal because the promo CDs are essentially gifts from the labels that the recipient can resell under the first sale doctrine. The law allows buyers of copyrighted works to resell them, as long as no additional copies were made.