CMU Digest

CMU Digest 15.08.16: Ministry Of Sound, consent decrees, Ed Sheeran, Cox Communiations, GEMA, Fabric

By | Published on Monday 15 August 2016

Ministry Of Sound

The key stories from the last seven days in the music business…

Sony Music acquired Ministry Of Sound Recordings, making the super-club’s label – with its current roster, back catalogue and compilations business – a wholly owned subsidiary of the major. The Ministry label has moved more into artist albums in recent years as the wider compilations market has struggled with the shift to downloads and especially streams. Ministry said that the deal would allow its label to “grow its recorded music offering on a truly global scale”. [READ MORE]

The music industry continued to speak out against the the US Department Of Justice’s recent review of the consent decrees that regulate collecting societies ASCAP and BMI, in which the government agency said no changes were necessary, but that the rights bodies should operate a 100% licensing system. With ASCAP seeking support in Congress for the music industry’s side of the debate, the politician behind the Songwriter Equity Act spoke out in support of the music community, but six other members of the House Of Representatives publicly supported the DoJ’s conclusions. [READ MORE]

A second song-theft lawsuit was filed against Ed Sheeran. This time the singer songwriter is accused of ripping off a Marvin Gaye track for his song ‘Thinking Out Loud’. It’s actually the estate of the co-writer on Gaye’s ‘Let’s Get It On’ which has gone legal. Sheeran was also recently sued for allegedly ripping off a song previously recorded by Matt Cardle. [READ MORE]

A US judge upheld BMG’s landmark court win against US internet service provider Cox Communications. The music firm successfully claimed that the ISP should be held liable for the infringement of its file-sharing customers because it operated a deliberately shoddy takedown system, and therefore couldn’t rely on the safe harbours of copyright law. The judge hearing the case denied a post-trial motion requested by Cox to quash the ruling or order a retrial. [READ MORE]

German collecting society GEMA scored a win in the German courts against file-transfer company, which was held liable for copyright infringement committed by its users. Crucially the court said that operating a basic takedown system was insufficient for the cloud-storage firm to avoid liability, because also had a responsibility to ensure that content – once taken down – stayed down. [READ MORE]

London club Fabric announced it was cancelling events due to take place there this last weekend because of two recent drug-related deaths at the venue. The club said “in order to understand how this has happened we have agreed with the police and other agencies to suspend our operation while we investigate”. Islington Council previously tried to force stricter security measures on Fabric, but the club successfully argued in court that its anti-drug policies were sound. [READ MORE]

The big deals from the last seven days in the music business…
• Live Nation acquired Nous Productions from Warner [INFO]
• R&S Records signed up with Believe Digital [INFO]
• Sire Records signed Sugarmen [INFO]

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