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US Music Publishers Sue Twitter For $250 Million Over Copyright Violations

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US Music Publishers Sue Twitter For $250 Million Over Copyright Violations

Twitter has so far not issued a statement on the matter.

Seventeen music publishers in the United States have filed a lawsuit against Twitter for more than $250 million alleging widespread copyright infringement involving around 1,700 songs. The National Music Publishers’ Association (NPMA) cited the statements of new Twitter owner Elon Musk and stated that the company has purposefully stopped enforcing the rules, as per a report in the BBC.

The association added that the microblogging website has not improved under the billionaire and it “permits and encourages infringement” for profit. The NMPA, which consists of companies including Sony Music Publishing, BMG Rights Management and Universal Music Publishing Group, claimed that the social networking platform keeps “reaping huge profits from the availability of unlicensed music without paying the necessary licensing fees for it.” It went on to say that the infringements gave Twitter an “unfair advantage” over competitors such as TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat who pay for music licenses.

Further, Mr Musk is quoted as saying that copyright “goes absurdly far beyond protecting the original creator” and that “overzealous” implementation of copyright laws “is a plague on humanity” in the lawsuit.

As per The Guardian, the complainants argue that each of the 1,700 songs was uploaded by “specific users who had already been identified in multiple earlier notices” in the court document, which includes a list of these songs. According to the statement, Twitter “did not expeditiously remove or disable access” in each instance.

The case argues, “Twitter’s policies demonstrate that Twitter views itself, not the law, as the arbiter of what content is permitted on the Twitter platform. Despite claiming to take down tweets in response to an infringement notice within hours or minutes, Twitter routinely waits much longer before acting, if it acts at all.”

It added, “There are thousands of instances where Twitter waited 30 days or more to remove or disable access to the content identified.” For each of the thousands of infractions, the lawsuit seeks a statutory penalty of $150,000.

Twitter has so far not issued a statement on the matter.

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