The estates of Robin Williams and George Carlin sued Sirius XM’s Pandora Media Inc on Monday, claiming the net music service owes royalties for streaming their materials thousands and thousands of occasions.
Williams and Carlin’s estates, together with comedians Invoice Engvall, Ron White and Andrew Cube Clay, haven’t acquired a “fraction of a penny” from Pandora, they stated in 5 separate federal lawsuits filed in Los Angeles by the identical legal professional.
The lawsuits ask for damages starting from over $4 million for Williams’ property to just about $13 million for White.
Carlin and Williams have been two of the preferred comedians of all time. Carlin died in 2008 and Williams in 2014. Engvall and White are greatest identified for his or her performances on the Blue Collar Comedy Tour, whereas Clay was a significant act within the late Nineteen Eighties and early Nineties.
The lawsuits say Pandora’s licenses to the comedians’ recordings don’t embody their underlying jokes. Whereas firms like Pandora usually negotiate licenses to music rights with performing-rights organizations just like the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, these teams don’t license literary works like spoken-word comedy, the comedians stated.
They stated Pandora knew it was violating their rights. Pandora’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Change Fee from 2011 to 2017 allegedly stated that it performed spoken-word comedy “absent a particular license from any performing rights affiliation” and will face “vital legal responsibility for copyright infringement.”
A rights-management group mentioned licensing the works with Pandora beginning in 2020, however Pandora ended the discussions final yr, the complaints stated.
Web radio big Sirius XM purchased https://www.reuters.com/article/us-pandora-m-a-sirius-xm-holdings/sirius-xm-to-buy-pandora-in-3-5-billion-streaming-push-idUSKCN1M418P Pandora for $3.5 billion in 2018 to bolster its streaming providers in opposition to rivals like Spotify and Apple Music . A Sirius spokesperson didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.
The comedians’ lawyer declined to touch upon the lawsuits.
(Reporting by Blake Brittain in Washington; Modifying by David Gregorio)
Photograph: The late Robin Williams in 2006. Photograph by: Michael Germana/Everett Assortment.
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