Music Publishers Sue Twitter for $250 Million Alleging Massive Copyright Infringement

In a legal battle that could have significant repercussions for social media giant Twitter, music publishers have filed a lawsuit seeking damages of over $250 million. The publishers accuse the platform of facilitating widespread copyright infringement that harms music creators.

According to the lawsuit, Twitter has allowed its users to share copyrighted songs without obtaining proper licenses for years. The complaint further alleges that the situation has worsened since Elon Musk acquired the company for $44 billion last fall and downsized its workforce.

The National Music Publishers’ Association, which represents major players in the industry such as Universal, Sony, and Warner Music Group, claims that Twitter’s lax attitude toward users sharing copyrighted music, combined with its promotion of tweets containing such music, has fueled the company’s growth in an unlawful manner.

The complaint highlights more than 1,700 songs that Twitter has allegedly infringed upon, including popular hits like Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” Outkast’s “Hey Ya!,” and Mark Ronson’s “Uptown Funk,” featuring Bruno Mars.

According to the complaint, Twitter’s ability to provide videos with unlicensed music gives the platform an unfair advantage over competitors like TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat, which all pay licensing fees to use copyrighted music.

At the time of reporting, Twitter had not responded to requests for comment on the lawsuit.

The legal action also brings attention to the significant layoffs that have taken place at Twitter since Musk’s acquisition. The complaint highlights Musk’s own views on copyright, including tweets from before he acquired Twitter, in which he criticized the current state of copyright law and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

The music industry’s lawsuit adds to the mounting legal challenges faced by Twitter, as the company is already under investigation by the US government for potential violations of privacy and security agreements with the Federal Trade Commission.

The lawsuit has been filed in the US District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee, setting the stage for a contentious legal battle between music publishers and Twitter.

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