Universal challenges VH1 DJ show ‘Master of the Mix’ with copyright lawsuit
In dance music’s world of remixes, bootlegs, and edits, issues of copyright legality are scarcely mentioned between friendly producers and left for big name labels to tackle. Universal Music Group has stepped up to the plate in a fresh lawsuit case against Je T’Aime Media Group, producers of VH1’s Master of the Mix reality TV DJ-showcase competition.
The suit, filed in California on the 22nd of August, focuses on the series’ third season. Throughout Master of the Mix‘s third round, Universal Music claims that at least 93 Universal owned songs and 115 recordings were improperly licensed. Of these listed tracks include works from Daft Punk, Kanye West, The Roots, and more.
For each copyright infringement, Universal seeks $150,000 in compensation while simultaneously igniting conversation on yet another music licensing issue. Despite the previous commonality of allowing uses of pre-1972 music a free pass on collecting royalties, THR explains that in recent years, label powers have decidedly begun to chase after music brands’ inappropriate usage of the older catalogue. In regards to the Master of the Mix case, Universal has named common law misappropriation and conversion claims over several older recordings used on the show including those of James Brown, Marvin Gaye, and The Temptations.