Monday 1 June 2015

Cheap at the price? Ukraine Supreme Court upholds Lily Allen infringement claim

The Ukrainian Supreme Commercial Court has recently ruled in favour of Ukrainian record company Comp Music Publishing in its copyright dispute against Astelit, one of the largest Ukrainian mobile telephone network operators, which trades under the life:) trade mark. Comp Music Publishing sought compensation for infringement of copyright owned by its client, the multinational music recording and publishing company EMI Music Publishing.

Between February and March 2010, life:) conducted an advertising campaign in which it ran a total of 4,369 broadcasts of a commercial, on 20 Ukrainian TV channels, that contained a musical composition based on the British recording artist Lily Allen’s 2009 hit single F*** You, authored by Lily Allen and American producer and songwriter Greg Kurstin.

In response to the copyright infringement allegation. Astelit claimed that the music was produced by its contractor, Shootgroup, which had employed the composer Vitaliy Rozinko, who only used part of the disputed song in his remix. In proceedings before the Kiev Commercial Court against Astelit, Shootgroup and Rozinko, Comp maintained that it had the exclusive rights to the song in Ukraine, under an agreement with EMI, demanding  21,000 euro (US$ 23,000) in damages. After two years of litigation, the Supreme Commercial Court of Ukraine has recently upheld the claim and awarded the damages sought.

Source: Olga Goncharova, "Lily Allen Song Basis Of Copyright Infringement Battle In Ukraine", in a Petosevic news item based on the Ukrainian newspaper Ekonomichna Pravda and the State Register of Court Decisions.

You can read the full judgment in Ukrainian (assuming that you can read Ukrainian) here

This blogger notes that the damages paid out by Astelit worked out at 4.81 euros per broadcast. A bargain?

1 comment:

Linas said...

Note that this occurred after a massive devaluation of the country's currency following a military conflict. The damages could have been three or four times as high in Euro had it been settled a few years ago.