Elvis Denied US Discovery of Sony Music For Litigation in Germany Adverse To Arista Music

In re  Elvis Presley Enters. LLC, No. 15-mc-386 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 1, 2016).

Elvis Presley Enterprises LLC is party to a litigation in Germany against Arista Music, and sought to serve a subpoena in the USA on Arista's affialiate, Sony Music, to obtain documents that it claims are relevant to the proceedings in Germany.  The Court exercised its discretion and denied the application pursuant to 28 USC 1782.  Weighing in favor of Sony's opposition to the discovery were: Arista is a wholly-owend subsidiary and thus has access to the documents and information held by Sony, the procedural posture of the case in Germany (it was on appeal), the timing of the section 1782 application, and the discovery requests were burdensome.

Airline Sued Over In-Flight Music Videos

Arista Music et al. v. United Airlines Inc. et al., No. 13-cv-7451 (S.D.N.Y. filed Oct. 22, 2013).

Plaintiffs are multiple record labels suing United Airlines for alleged copyright infringement.  Plaintiffs allege that United is transmitting performances of the Plaintiff's music videos and sound recordings, without Plaintiffs' authorization, to airline passengers for in-flight entertainment.

Bay City Rollers' Royalty Suit Not Time-Barred

Faulkner v. Arista Records LLC, 07 Civ. 2318 (LAP), NYLJ 1202495926616, at *1 (SDNY, Decided May 23, 2011).

Plaintiffs, all former members of 1970s-era musical group the Bay City Rollers, brought this action alleging that they were owed tens of millions of dollars in unpaid royalties from their record company, Defendant Arista Records, LLC ("Arista"). Plaintiffs claim these royalties pursuant to a 1981 agreement; accordingly, Arista argues that even if it owes Plaintiffs accrued royalties from the time period prior to 2001, the statute of limitations bars Plaintiffs' claim. Plaintiffs counter that Arista acknowledged its debt in a writing, thereby satisfying Section 17-101 of New York's General Obligations Law, which restarts the statute of limitations to revive the debt.

Section 17-101 of New York's General Obligations Law ("Section 17-101") codifies and restricts the common-law rule that an acknowledgement of a debt is sufficient to refresh the obligation, thereby restarting the running of the statute of limitations. To restart the running of the statute of limitations under Section 17-101, an acknowledgment or promise must be in writing, be signed by the debtor party, recognize an existing debt and contain nothing inconsistent with an intention on the part of the debtor to pay it.

Plaintiffs and Arista have each moved for partial summary judgment on Arista's affirmative defense that the statute of limitations bars Plaintiffs' claim. The Court granted Plaintiffs' motion for partial summary judgment, and denied Defendant's motion for partial summary judgment.

Webcasting Not 'Interactive Service' Required to Pay License Fees

A webcasting service, Launch, that provides users with individualized Internet radio stations is not required to pay licensing fees to copyright holders of the songs the service plays. The service, which provides the stations by which content is affected by customers' ratings of titles, artists and albums, is not "interactive" as a matter of law. Therefore it is not required to pay individual license fees to the copyright holders; instead, it is only required to pay a statutory licensing fee as set by the Copyright Royalty Board.

Arista Records, LLC v. Launch Media, Inc., no. 07-civ-2567 (2d Cir. Aug. 21, 2009).

A Flurry of John Doe Suits

The past two days saw a "flurry" of law suits filed by major labels in Federal District Court: no less than 17 copyright infringement cases were filed against John Doe defendants and IP-addresses by, collectively -- Zomba, Atlantic, Capitol, Sony BMG, MoTown, Warner Bros. Records, Elektra, UMG, Maverick, and Arista.

Additionally, several suits were filed against actual named defendants - whom were identified by 3rd party investigators for using P2P networks at the defendant's IP-address. (e.g. case no
Notably, many of the cases were filed in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, with the labels (for the most part...) represented by the SAME attorney: Jennifer K. Welsh. Talk about a pay-day! Other courts include New Hampshire, Nebraska, North Carolina, Massachusetts, and Tennessee.
Is there some sort of quota the labels fill before the end of the year?

[UNVERIFIED Case nos.: 1:2007cv00972; 4:2007cv03278; 1:2007cv00416; 5:2007cv03883; 2:2007cv05463; 2:2007cv05464; 2:2007cv05457; 2:2007cv05461; 2:2007cv05467; 2:2007cv05458; 2:2007cv05459; 2:2007cv05456; 2:2007cv05460; 2:2007cv05462; 2:2007cv05465; 2:2007cv05466; 1:2007cv00479; 3:2007cv00481; 6:2007cv00569; 4:2007cv04525; 4:2007cv04527; 4:2007cv04528. ***OTCS did not verify all case numbers; Check case files and citations before citing***]

My My, Hey Hey

My my, hey hey...what OTCS can miss in ONE DAY!

Arista Records filed 12 - yes, TWELVE - copyright infringement suits in various federal district courts, each against John Doe defendants, between Nov. 27 and Nov. 29, 2007. Presumably, all relate to on-line infringement and the defendants must be identified by their IP addresses.

Additionally, UMG Recordings, Zomba, Sony BMG, and LaFace Records filed John Doe complaints over the same period of time.

OTCS has a full-time job and can't read all the complaints - so who knows what is going on? Anyone? Bueller?