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Report: Spotify facing $1.6 billion copyright lawsuit

KC Orcutt

 // Jan 3, 2018

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Although 2017 bore witness to a culture-shifting spike in music consumption by way of streaming, a new lawsuit against Spotify further highlights how the business model is far from perfect in its current dorm, doubling as a reminder to consumers and creators alike that the conversation regarding proper and fair compensation in the age of streaming remains ongoing.

As reported, Wixen Music Publishing has filed a copyright lawsuit against the streaming giant, with the company seeking at least $1.6 billion. Per reports, Wixen alleges that Spotify has been using "thousands of songs" without the correct licenses and, in turn, is withholding proper compensation.

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"Prior to launching in the United States, Spotify attempted to license sound recordings by working with record labels but, in a race to be first to market, made insufficient efforts to collect the required musical composition information and, in turn, failed in many cases to license the compositions embodied within each recording or comply with the requirements of Section 115 of the Copyright Act," the complaint filed by Wixen reads in part.

Spotify's legal team has since responded to the new lawsuit, arguing that the contracts Wixen has with songwriters do not allow the publishing company to take legal action on their artists' behalf and that the filing allow their clients enough time to choose to opt out of the litigation.

The lawsuit, which was filed on Friday (Dec. 29) arrives in response to the $43 million settlement that Spotify had initially suggested back in May 2017, a proposition that was largely criticized at the time by artists such as Tom Petty, Kenny Rogers and more.

Wixen Music Publishing administers songs from a variety of artists, including Neil Young, Tom Petty, Weezer, Missy Elliott, The Beach Boys and more.

See the details of the lawsuit in full here.

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