Apple, Google, Sony Face Lawsuits over Pre-1972 Music

Apple, Google, Sony Face Lawsuits over Pre-1972 Music
YouTube isn't the only streaming service that has become a target for litigious copyright holders. Zenbu Magazines, which claims that it owns a number of recordings made prior to 1972, has filed a total of seven suits against various streaming companies.

In the suit, Zenbu claims that it owns decades-old recordings by the Flying Burrito Brothers, Hot Tuna and New Riders of the Purple Sage. This has led it to file suits again Apple's Beat Electronics, Sony Entertainment, Google, Rdio, Songza, Slacker and Grooveshark owner Escape Media Group.

The suit was filed by lawyer Jack Fitzgerald in California Federal Court.

The Hollywood Reporter notes that these recordings fall into a legal grey area, because when copyright law was amended in the 1970s, it only covered recordings made after February 15, 1972. This has allowed many broadcasters and establishments to play recordings made before 1972 without much opposition, due to the murky laws that cover that material.

There have been a spate of legal questions regarding pre-1972 music in the last couple of years, and this latest suit suggests that it might be time for a new law that covers this material.

For more information about the laws regarding sound recordings from before 1972, read this article over at Plagiarism Today.