Spotify is about to battle another billion-dollar lawsuit alleging mass-copyright infringement and deceptive trade practices.
Back in August, we first reported that Eminem publisher Eight Mile Style was slapping Spotify with an elephantine, multi-billion-dollar infringement lawsuit. That suit, spearheaded by Marvin Gaye Estate litigator Richard Busch, questioned certain provisions of the Music Modernization Act (MMA) that effectively absolve Spotify from previous non-payments and copyright infringements.
“The MMA’s retroactive elimination of the right of a plaintiff to receive profits attributable to infringement, statutory damages, and attorneys’ fees, is an unconstitutional denial of due process (both procedural and substantive), and an unconstitutional taking of vested property rights,” the filing slammed.
Now, there’s another monster lawsuit landing on Spotify’s doorstep.
The suit, filed by PRO Music Rights, LLC, and Sosa Entertainment, LLC, alleges that Spotify failed to pay on over 550,000,000 musical streams. A major part of the non-payment stems from a contested removal of content, starting in May of 2017.
“Plaintiffs bring this action to redress substantial injuries Spotify caused by failing to fulfill its duties and obligations as a music streaming service, willfully removing content for anti-competitive reasons, engaging in unfair and deceptive business practices, obliterating Plaintiffs’ third-party contracts and expectations, refusing to pay owed royalties and publicly performing songs without license,” the lawsuit declares.
As for the content removal, it looks like Spotify was yanking catalog based on certain rules violations. But both PRO and Sosa contest that determination as unjustified. “Starting in or about May 2017, Spotify removed all of Plaintiffs’ songs from its digital music streaming platform… without advance notice, without ever telling Plaintiffs why their songs were removed, without ever giving Plaintiffs an opportunity to address the issue, without ever providing Plaintiffs with an opportunity to cure whatever the reason for removal, and without adhering to the rules, procedures, policies and obligations to which Spotify holds itself out to the public,” the complaint continues.
The teardown apparently caused serious complications in the relationship between Sosa and Merlin, which represents a large number of independent labels and directly negotiates with Spotify.
“Pro Music Rights intends to ask a Florida jury at trial to hold Spotify responsible for its reprehensible conduct of intellectual property infringement and unfair and deceptive trade practices,” Jake Noch, founder and CEO of Pro Music Rights, stated.
The case, Pro Music Rights LLC et al v. Spotify AB et al., Case No. 2:19-cv-00843, was filed earlier today (November 25th) in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida. Attorneys representing PRO are Richard Gora and Sinead Rafferty of Gora LLC, and Vito Roppo of Colosseum Counsel, PLLC.
The full complaint is here.
JOIN THE STRICT TYPERS FEDERATED UNION NOW.
as artists, we must rally together for the greater cause.
Music written by robots, being listened to by robots. What a time to be alive.
I can’t find any evidence that this Sosa Entertainment label even exists, apart from …. a Spotify playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/6EVSNmg0ajCF95NCdDyN4k?
They’ve got no website or social media presence.
Pro Music Rights seem to represent artists who are similarly under the radar.
you can’t find it because Spotify removed it
i.e. Deceitful Business Practice
What? Spotify managed to remove Sosa Entertainment’s website and SoundCloud page and Twitter and Facebook accounts but left their music on Spotify? Is that what you are saying Walter? The few releases on Sosa Entertainment didn’t get many plays on Spotify because they weren’t very good. You can listen to some on Spotify here: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/6EVSNmg0ajCF95NCdDyN4k These tracks are by the label owner, Jake Noch, made when he was only 17 or 18. It doesn’t look like he was very good at paying the few other artists he released music by:
No your wrong Sosa have twitter page here look:
I did find Sosa Entertainment and Jake Noch on BMI’s website under their repertoire search. However, the URL they had listed didn’t work.
Still, the fact that they’re listed on BMI’s repertoire search at all is probably important somehow. Just because you say you left a certain PRO, doesn’t necessarily make it so, at least for a few years.
Is PRO Music Rights/Sosa Entertainment still “partnering” with DMN to get positive coverage? They’ve already been outed as a scam, on this very site:
So, these teen rappers signed to Sosa Entertainment LLC were getting millions of streams on Spotify but none seem to have much more than 80 plays on YouTube:
Pro Music Rights uploaded lots of 2 minute tracks of drum loops to Spotify, gave them fake artist names and made albums with clickbait titles like “Porn”, “Fortnite” and “EDM”. That is what got pulled. I am one of the people that reported them. Pro Music Rights were scamming Spotify.
Some of the music is still on SoundCloud if you can bear to listen to it:
Well, this is going well for little Jakey, isn’t it.