There seems to be another motivation for Grooveshark’s aggressive, far-reaching subpoena against Digital Music News: paranoia. According to an email recently sent to a large number of industry executives, a top Grooveshark executive now suspects that Digital Music News is secretly conspiring with Universal Music Group to bring Grooveshark down.
The very broad accusation came from Grooveshark SVP of External Affairs Paul Geller. “If UMG is going to make an anonymous comment a key piece of evidence, I’m surprised [UMG executives] don’t want to know who it is,” Geller emailed the PHO List, an invite-only, email-based list of rather impassioned industry executives. “You’ll notice the subpoena also demands details of the relationship UMG had with DMN, which we believe to be nefarious.”
Beyond the paranoid aspects, the decision to broadcast this to a well-read industry list may also be part of a calculated PR effort. In this case, Geller and Grooveshark may be unfairly looking to characterize Digital Music News as a pawn of Universal Music Group, rather than an independent journalistic voice.
Which of course sounds preposterous to us, but we’d offer these recent articles on UMG as evidence to the contrary.
August 25th, 2011: “Lawyers: Grooveshark May Have Just Defeated UMG…“
February 3rd, 2011: “Exclusive: UMG Executing ‘Sinister Plan’ to Block Royalty Challenges…“
November 11th, 2011: “Record Companies Keep Lists of Works Exploited for Which Royalties Have Not Been Paid“
November 3rd, 2011: “A Major Label Artist Makes 8 Cents On a 99-Cent iTunes Download…“
Separately, we’ve objected to the subpoena on the grounds that, among other points, this correspondence can easily be obtained through a subpoena involving UMG. You know, the company that is actually suing Grooveshark.