Artists File Suit In Canada To Recover Fees
December 8, 2009 at 4:30 AM (PT)
A lawsuit filed in CANADA "accuses the Canadian divisions of the world's largest recording labels of failing to pay licensing fees to artists whose songs are included in compilation CDs," reports THE NEW YORK POST. The class-action suit comes from performers ranging from "CANADA's SARAH MCLACHLAN to U.S.-based singers BEYONCÉ and BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN thus far is seeking nearly $50 million in unpaid fees, though some believe the number could swell to $60 billion, according to a report in the TORONTO STAR."
The issue revolves around claims that the Canadian music business has been taking advantage of a loophole in Canadian law, and has not been paying artists immediately when their songs are included on a CD compilation, but instead, adding them to a "pending list," a practice used since the late 1980s, when CANADA changed its copyright law to allow for the pending list.
The report says "thanks to the proliferation of compilation CDs, the size of the pending list has grown dramatically -- now up to more than 300,000 songs."
THE STAR report says the labels are claiming they don't have the resources to identify and pay the owners of the copyrights.