Settlement in Music Copyright Infringement Case

Marsha S. Cadogan (PhD)| MSC Intellectual Property and Technology Law

The music industry is no stranger to copyright litigation. Copyright infringement occurs when someone does something (whether copies, uses, sells, distributes, accesses, makes public etc.) without the right holders permission.

Some of the more well-known copyright infringement disputes include the award of damages against Katy Perry’s over allegations that her song “Dark Horse” contained lyrics from a rap song; the Pharrel, Robin Thicke and Marvin Gaye’s dispute that led to a U.S $4.5 million settlement awarded to Marvin Gaye’s estate, and the Eight Mile (Eminem) and National Party of New Zealand (NZ) case where the NZ court awarded Eminem $600,000 for copyright infringement of his “Lose Yourself” song.

For the start of 2020, to this list can now be added the settlement of a copyright infringement claim against Miley Cyrus for her song “We Can’t Stop this” by Jamaican Reggae artist Flourgan. His allegation is that the concerned song contained lyrics from his 1988 hit “We run things”. Filed in 2018, the suit is reported as now settled as of January 3, 2020.