RikiMusic is pirating dozens of articles from Hypebot as well as allegedly uploading tracks from indie artists to Spotify and Amazon Music without authorization….
Caleb Jackson Dills, who first wrote about the music theft for Artists Rights Watch, also noticed that the content on the RikiMusic blog looked familiar.
Virtually all of the dozens of posts on the RikiMusic site were pirated directly from Hypbot.com and illegally published verbatim without attribution.
Attorney and artist advocate Chris Castle received a confirmation via tweet that the Official Receiver was also tasked with determining “the cause of its failure.” Further, “if unacceptable conduct is identified she can seek to have the directors banned from running other companies for up to 15 years.” That’s not exactly the punishment that those affected had hoped for it wrongdoing is proven but also does not rule out further legal or government action against the PledgeMusic board and executives.
[Editor Charlie sez: The $43.4 million fund ordered by the Court is a downpayment on the $112.55 million settlement with the class. Noteably, the members of that class do not include National Music Publishers Association members (96% of their members who settled for $30 million, apparently mostly the big guns but terms are confidential) or the Wixen objectors.]
The court has approved the settlement of combined class action lawsuits originally brought against Spotify for copyright infringement by musicians David Lowery and Melissa Ferrick. The settlement guarantees an artist compensation of $43.4million plus future royalties. The full settlement totals $112.55 million, including legal fees.
The ruling came despite objections of major music publisher Wixen and several songwriters and publishers who argued that the settlement was too small.
“The court heard a lot of testimony and did the best it could under the circumstances,” attorney and artist advocate Christian Castle tells Hypebot. “It’s still far and away the most money anyone has gotten so far from Spotify’s gross and willful infringement of song copyrights. Next time maybe they’ll pay more attention to the little guy.”
SoundExchange’s new Music Data Exchange (MDX) is a promising idea that gets at the real problem with mass infringement of songs by digital services. It also gives some hope of actually reducing the “pending and unmatched” (or “black box” in the vernacular) at the source–before the songs are infringed.