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Grooveshark: Universal lawsuit claims are blatantly false

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 24 Nov 2011 8:08 User comments (3)

Grooveshark: Universal lawsuit claims are blatantly false Universal Music Group seeking over $17 billion in damages.
The music industry giant claims that Grooveshark employees uploaded more than 100,000 pirated songs to the website. It alleges that even the chief executive, Samuel Tarantino, uploaded 1,791 pirated songs at least, while Nikola Arabadjiev, head of quality assurance efforts, allegedly uploaded over 40,000 songs.

Universal is seeking $150,000 in damages for each of the 113,777 tracks, or about $17.1 billion.

Grooveshark responded to the lawsuit by saying it is based on blatantly false data and on a "gross mischaracterization of information." Marshall Custer, general counsel for Grooveshark, said in a statement that Universal's claims rest almost entirely on an anonymous blog comment.

The comment itself was posted to an entry on the Digital Music News blog. The blog post was about the band King Crimson, and its attempt to have music removed from Grooveshark, which was not a success.

The commenter claimed to work for Grooveshark, saying that employees are set a predetermined amount of weekly uploads to the system and are paid a bonus if they can exceed it. The commenter admits that the practice is neither legal or ethical and that the culture at Grooveshark from the top down is to view the industry, and artists, as the enemy.

Grooveshark says there is no truth at all to the blog comment, and said it will fight the Universal lawsuit in court, not in the press.

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3 user comments

125.11.2011 7:40

It seems these alleged illegal up-downloads have done more civil damages than the value of their entire music catalogue. Could this be a combination of new speak and new math ?

227.11.2011 22:05

I've met people who work at Grooveshark (During a start-up weekend convention in Tampa) back in August.

While I doubt that the CEO would purposely try to rip artist's off. However, I did question the profitability of the company vs Pandora and they said they did it with 'custom players' and mobile subscriptions. Somehow, I just don't believe that.

327.11.2011 22:38

Grooveshark is the worst nightmare of the music industry...easy to use music available anywhere for free, with no danger to the users. Of course they are going to try to do whatever they can to shut them down. Even if the tracks are not pirated, they are still not licensed for this use.

BTW...today grooveshark got me to buy three CDs that I otherwise wouldn't have bought...so even if it is piracy, it is benefiting the music industry.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 27 Nov 2011 @ 23:17


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