Judge rules that T.I. and Universal Music are also liable for copyright infringement.
The federal judge presiding over the ‘Blurred Lines’ case has handed down some big rulings following the trial held in March. Crucially, U.S. District Judge John Kronstadt has rejected arguments over expert witness testimony and jury instructions in denying a bid for a new trial.
Judge Kronstadt also ruled that record labels including UMG Recordings, Interscope and Star Trak Entertainment should be held liable for their distribution of the song, which was found to be a copy of Gaye’s ‘Got to Give It Up’. Rapper T.I. contributed a verse to the song and is now ruled as a copyright infringer.
The family of Marvin Gaye had sought an injunction to halt all sales of the song. This was denied, however the judge did grant a request for an ongoing royalty rate of 50 percent of songwriter and publishing revenues.
The judge also reduced the damages awarded to the Gaye family. Initially, they were awarded $7.4 million. That figure is now $5.3 million. You can read the full ruling here.
Gaye family attorney Richard Busch says he is reviewing the new developments, but is “thrilled with the decision by the Court not only affirming the decision of the jury that Mr. Thicke and Mr. Williams committed copyright infringement, but also the decision holding Mr. Harris and Universal liable as well. As far as the reduction in damages, we are reviewing that, and the Court’s analysis on that issue, and will be discussing internally our options,” he said.
Pharrell Williams’ lawyer Howard King once again asserted his intention to appeal the decision. “We look forward to exercising our further remedies and ultimately achieving clarity on the difference between inspiration and copyright infringement,” he said. [via The Hollywood Reporter]