Spotify settlement 'substantively unfair', claim musicians


Actor Sir Anthony Hopkins and a number of musicians have branded a proposed settlement agreement between Spotify and musicians as “unfair”, claiming that it fails to “protect the critical interests” of the artists.

In May 2017, a proposed $43 million settlement was reached between Spotify and a number of artists to resolve a class action lawsuit.

Spotify had been sued by David Lowery, the frontman of rock band Cracker and artist advocate, and singer/songwriter Melissa Ferrick who had sought $150 million and $200 million respectively, claiming Spotify had failed to pay artists sufficiently for using their work.

The suits were combined last year.

Since the settlement was agreed, several artists have come forward to voice their objections.

In a filing made on Tuesday, September 12, several artists, including Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine, voiced their concerns.

After attorneys’ fees, the settlement figure reduces to $28.7 million for the artists, the objection stated.

“More specifically, the settlement agreement is unfair because it could pay as little as $3.82 for each composition whose copyright Spotify infringed”, it explained.

"If as few as one-quarter of those songs, 7.5 million, were unlicensed then, taking the $28.7 million left in the settlement fund after attorneys’ fees are paid and dividing that number by 7.5 million songs, the result is a settlement payment of $3.82 per infringed song.”

In April, TBO reported that record labels including Sony Music and Capitol Records had sued internet service provider Grande Communications for failing to disconnect its users who had allegedly illegally downloaded music.

According to the claim, Grande Communications “permitted repeat infringers to use the service”, despite being notified that its users had engaged in “more than one million infringements of copyrighted works” over the BitTorrent system.

Spotify, music artists, copyright, music streaming, royalties, settlement, objection, online copyright, Sir Anthony Hopkins, Rage Against the Machine, Weez

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