What's New

NMPA Reaches Resolution of Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Against YouTube
Agreement Results in New Licensing Opportunity for Music Publishers

August 17, 2011

WASHINGTON--The National Music Publishers’ Association announced today it has reached a resolution with YouTube in a copyright infringement lawsuit filed in 2007. As a result of this resolution, music publishers will have the opportunity to enter into a License Agreement with YouTube and receive royalties from YouTube for musical works in videos posted on the site. HFA’s licensing and rights administration expertise was instrumental in making this opportunity possible. HFA will administer the license agreements which will be available to all music publishers regardless of affiliation.

The license opportunity will enable music publishers to grant the rights necessary for the synchronization of their musical works with videos posted by YouTube users and to receive royalties from YouTube for user-generated videos for which YouTube receives advertising revenue worldwide.

“We are pleased to have resolved NMPA’s litigation claims and to work with YouTube in providing a new licensing opportunity for songwriters and publishers,” said NMPA President and CEO David Israelite. “This is a positive conclusion for all parties and one that recognizes and compensates the work of songwriters and publishers going forward.”

Gary Churgin, President and CEO of HFA, commented, “We are excited to be working with YouTube, and our participation in this landmark deal is a testament to our continued commitment to bringing to market innovative licensing solutions.”

Additional information about the licensing opportunity will be posted on the NMPA and HFA web sites and sent to music publishers in the coming weeks.


BACKGROUND

The licensing offer is being made in connection with the resolution by NMPA of its litigation claims against YouTube filed in 2007 together with other parties in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, captioned The Football Association Premier League Limited, et al. v. You Tube, Inc. In the suit, NMPA and music publisher plaintiffs alleged that YouTube infringed publishers’ copyrights through the unauthorized use of copyrighted music works.  Prior to certification of a plaintiff class, the District Court issued a decision in the Litigation granting YouTube’s motion for summary judgment and entered judgment in YouTube’s favor.  Plaintiffs, including NMPA and the music publishers, appealed the judgment to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, where the suit is currently pending. Today, NMPA and music publishers Edward B. Marks Music Company, Freddy Bienstock Music Company, Alley Music Corporation and The Rodgers & Hammerstein Organization filed a notice to dismiss their appeal in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.