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Ministry of Sound Suing Spotify Over User Playlists 201

AmiMoJo writes "The Ministry of Sound, a UK dance music brand, is suing Spotify because it has not removed users' playlists that mirror their compilation albums. The case will hinge on whether compilation albums qualify for copyright protection due to the selection and arrangement involved in putting them together. Spotify has the rights to stream all the tracks on the playlists in question, but the issue here is whether the compilation structure — the order of the songs — can be copyrighted."
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Ministry of Sound Suing Spotify Over User Playlists

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @09:48AM (#44755821)

    No, they are artists.

    Use this instead:

    Just make sure NOT to pay money for anything they have done.

  • by AmiMoJo (196126) * <`mojo' `at' `'> on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @10:28AM (#44756231) Homepage

    To be fair people are naming their playlists after the albums they re-created, so it appears that there is some small value in the ordering otherwise why bother to mention where you copied it from?

    It's still stupid of course.

  • by Bob9113 (14996) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @10:34AM (#44756277) Homepage

    Seriously, how much research does selecting a number of Top 100 chart songs that aren't too dissimilar really involve that make it so vastly different from the mixtapes many of us made back in the days?

    I take it you're not a DJ. I don't know if Ministry of Sound UK is building solid sets or not (I actually have a few of their compilations, but haven't listened to them for structure), but the difference between a professional set and a mix tape is like the difference between a well designed database and the chaotic crap-fest data-dump that front-end programmers hack together when they're prototyping. A good set can take many hours to build and gets refined over months, or even years.

  • by NJRoadfan (1254248) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @11:02AM (#44756597)
    Compilation albums of EDM can go two ways, mixed and unmixed tracks. If the tracks are continuously mixed by a DJ for MoS (very common), there could be a claim that they have some rights to that compilation. If its just a series of unmixed tracks (the original songs just thrown into a playlist) than there shouldn't be an issue.
  • Re:No soup. (Score:4, Informative)

    by idontgno (624372) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @11:20AM (#44756783) Journal

    You're thinking Feist v. Rural []. That US Supreme Court judgement held that simply collecting and unoriginally arranging mere information wasn't sufficiently creative to constitute a copyrightable work.

    However, this is a UK suit. Feist isn't precedent. Also, it appears that the rest of the world (outside of the US) seems more friendly to the idea of copyrightable collections: the EU "database right" [] (and more specifically implemented in the UK by the The Copyright and Rights in Databases Regulations 1997 []); the explicit language in the Berne Convention supporing the copyrightability of collections (Article 2, section 5); and the corresponding wording in the GATT Uruguay Round Treaty Agreement, specifically in the TRIPS Agreement [].

    So, Feist appears to be an exception, not the rule.

  • by MightyYar (622222) on Wednesday September 04, 2013 @12:08PM (#44757293)

    Yeah, try that defense :)

    As a side note, I certainly hope you aren't looking for logic in copyright law!

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