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Eminem copyright infringement lawsuit “politically motivated”, says New Zealand National Party

By | Published on Wednesday 17 September 2014


Hey, when was the last time we had a story about a musician suing a politician? I don’t know, and I can’t be bothered to go and look. It was a while ago though. Oh wait, was it the Eagles guy? I think it was the Eagles guy.

Anyway, that doesn’t matter, because now Eminem’s at it, and Eminem trumps Eagles guy any day of the goddamn week. Plus, he’s suing an entire political party in New Zealand, which is extra cool.

Eminem is super bummed that the country’s National Party used one of his songs in an TV advert, as part of its campaign to get Prime Minister John Key re-elected, without permission. The ‘Lose Yourself’ song too, which is one of the ones people know the best. So everyone in New Zealand will know who it’s by, and they might have assumed that Eminem in some way endorsed the party and its policies.

Eminem is not a happy man, because he doesn’t want people to think that. He’s not even sure what a New Zealand is, for starters. So, his publishers Eight Mile Style and Martin Affiliated yesterday filed legal papers with New Zealand’s High Court accusing the party of copyright infringement.

Speaking for the rapper’s publishing concerns to the New Zealand Herald, Joel Martin said: “Eminem’s publishers were not approached for permission to use any of Eminem’s songs for this campaign advertisement”.

The National Party denies this and says it did everything properly, going through licensing company Beatbox Music in Australia, which apparently reckons it ticked all the copyright boxes, by dealing with collecting society APRA/AMCOS. So that all’s fine, I’m sure (well, they’re sure).

The National Party’s campaign chairman Steven Joyce said of the lawsuit: “I think these guys are just having a crack and have a bit of an eye for the main chance because it’s an election campaign. So good on them, but we’ll be contesting it pretty seriously. We don’t believe they’ve got any grounds at all and we suspect it’s politically motivated”.

He added that the party had stopped using the music two weeks ago, after being contacted by the publishers: “Nobody else seems to have had any trouble with it, it seems that picking on a political party might be flavour of the week”.

Yeah, Eminem! Stop picking on the poor defenceless politicians!

The case continues.