US Music publishers launch a $250m lawsuit against Twitter over alleged copyright infringement. Despite a leadership change, have conditions truly improved?
- Twitter faces a $250 million lawsuit filed by the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA) and 17 other music publishers, accusing the platform of copyright infringement involving nearly 1,700 songs.
- Critics argue that Twitter’s handling of copyright matters has not improved since Elon Musk’s takeover, with allegations suggesting a state of internal disarray and downsizing of crucial departments.
- Twitter’s refusal to secure music licensing rights, unlike other major social media platforms, places the tech giant in hot water, with the lawsuit emphasizing Twitter’s alleged profiting from copyrighted music and lack of action against repeat infringers.
Twitter Rocked by a $250 Million Copyright Lawsuit from Music Publishers
In an event that’s struck a discordant note in the tech industry, Twitter has come under fire from a consortium of 17 US-based music publishers. This musical assembly, orchestrated by the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA), has accused Twitter of copyright infringement concerning nearly 1,700 songs, landing the social media giant in a litigation worth over $250 million.
The Harmonic Dispute: Music Publishers vs. Twitter
The melodrama unfolded at the Federal District Court in Nashville, where the NMPA has declared Twitter an enabler of copyright violation for the sake of profit. NMPA’s allegations have stirred up quite a controversy, given Twitter’s persistent refusal to pay the necessary licensing fees for the unlicensed music it allegedly profits from.
Although the platform’s operational cadence hasn’t changed since Elon Musk’s acquisition, the NMPA believes Twitter has an unfair edge over its rivals. Competitors like TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat dutifully pay for music licenses, placing Twitter’s stance in stark contrast.
H2: Elon Musk’s Twitter: A Solo Out of Tune
Elon Musk, the world’s wealthiest man, acquired Twitter last year for a staggering $44 billion. However, according to the NMPA, the change in ownership has done little to harmonize Twitter’s discord with copyright norms. In fact, the allegations suggest a state of internal disarray within the company, with Twitter downsizing crucial departments and ignoring known copyright violators.
These issues were brought to the forefront after the appointment of Linda Yaccarino, ex-head of advertising at NBCUniversal, as Twitter’s new chief. Under Musk’s leadership, Twitter has cut 75% of its workforce, including teams dedicated to monitoring abuse and verifying accounts. This drastic restructuring has caused a stir, particularly given Twitter’s ongoing struggle to monetize.
The Crescendo: Twitter’s Legal Battle Ahead
The copyright infringement lawsuit seems to be the culmination of years of pent-up frustration among music publishers, who allege that Twitter knowingly allows and profits from the dissemination of copyrighted music compositions.
Unlike other major social media platforms, Twitter hasn’t secured music licensing rights, giving it an allegedly unfair advantage. The lawsuit also points to Twitter’s intentional fostering of users who infringe copyright to boost engagement and revenues.
Facing hundreds of thousands of takedown notices, Twitter is in a tricky position, having seemingly turned a deaf ear to the NMPA’s weekly infringement notices since December 2021. With the NMPA now accusing Twitter of failing to terminate repeat infringers, it appears the social media giant is marching to the beat of its own drum.