EMI Music Sues Hi5, VideoEgg and Ten Defendants To Be Named Later

EMI, which is looking less like a music label and more like a lawsuit label, is at it again. This afternoon they filed a lawsuit alleging “massive and blatant” copyright infringement by Hi5, VideoEgg and ten John Doe defendants to be named later. The core of the suit is over copyrighted EMI content that appears on Hi5, particularly music videos.

EMI is a particularly litigious company. In the recent past, they’vd sued or threatened to sue AllofMP3, YouTube, Apple, MP3Tunes, XM Radio, Infospace (can’t really blame them there) and even The Beatles.

One person close to the litigation says that the parties have been negotiating with EMI for well over a year to avoid litigation, but that they were unable to reach agreement. The shakedown attempt before litigation is standard practice these days. But what is a little different here is that EMI is going deep into the supply chain to find other deep pockets.

VideoEgg, for example, provided video functionality to Hi5 in the past, but the deal ended in April 2008, and they no longer work together. The ten John Doe defendants are presumably other service providers, and/or executives of Hi5, VideoEgg and those other companies. The fact that EMI included VideoEgg in the lawsuit shows that they care little about current infringement – they just want a payoff for stuff that happened in the past.

VideoEgg CEO Matt Sanchez says that they comply with all DMCA takedown demands, but never received one from EMI. VideoEgg also used AudibleMagic , he says, to identify and proactively removed copyrighted material.

The lawsuit complaint, which was filed in New York, is below.

EMI Music v. VideoEgg, Hi5 and others – Get more Legal Forms