Spotify Moves to Seal Court Documents In Eminem, Kobalt Royalty Battle

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Yesterday, Digital Music News was first to report that Spotify had filed a third-party complaint against Kobalt Music Publishing as part of its ongoing legal battle with Eminem publisher Eight Mile Style. Now, the leading music streaming service has moved to seal potentially sensitive documents introduced as the matter proceeds through court.

The Stockholm-based company just recently submitted the privacy-minded request to a Tennessee federal court, and we quickly obtained a copy of the corresponding form.

The page-long filing states that Spotify “respectfully moves for leave to file under seal select portions of its Third-Party Complaint,” besides indicating that the plaintiffs [Eight Mile Style and Martin Affiliated, LLC] support and have agreed to the request. Similarly, it was noted that elements of the third-party complaint had been redacted to conceal details that “concern confidential agreements.”

Eight Mile Style initiated the lawsuit last August, alleging, among other things, that Spotify had infringed upon a whopping 243 Eminem tracks, including hits like “Lose Yourself” and “Till I Collapse.”

The plaintiffs are seeking $150,000 in damages for each of these of these alleged unlicensed uses, totaling $36.45 million. Additionally, Eight Mile Style maintains that it’s owed some of the billions in value that Spotify gained while featuring Eminem’s tracks.

Yesterday, however, in the aforementioned third-party complaint, Spotify reiterated that it believes that Eight Mile Style’s claims are without merit, but suggested that Kobalt Music Publishing may nevertheless be the liable party.

On the day, Spotify stock, traded under the symbol SPOT, is up about two percent, to almost $186 per share. Since announcing that it will become the exclusive home of the Joe Rogan Experience (JRE) two weeks back, Spotify’s value has hovered at a level not seen since 2018, in the months following its debut on the stock market.

Eminem’s Shady Records revealed on social media that it will be closed today in recognition of Black Out Tuesday, a protest movement designed to spread awareness of violence against African Americans.

While the initiative was conceived and planned by members of the music industry, a number of entertainment companies and professionals (including actors Anna Kendrick and Bryan Cranston) are also participating.