Print 38 comment(s) - last by OrSin.. on Aug 1 at 12:12 PM

Apple's TV set top and its iTunes store are targets for artists

Apple may be in trouble with its Apple TV set top player and the iTunes store. Two lawsuits filed this week claim that Apple knowingly infringed on copyrights, one of which belongs to a Louis Psihoyos, an artistic photographer. The second suit is a civil complaint that claims Apple and pop star Avril Lavigne knowingly infringed on a song written in 1979.

One of the Apple TV's well known advertisements uses a visual representation of a "video wall," consisting of many small videos playing at once with an Apple TV box in the middle. According to the lawsuit which was filed in Boulder, Colorado, the similarity between Apple's video wall and Psihoyos’ photo is too close to be merely coincidence. In fact, Apple and Psihoyos had been in negotiations over the use of his photo or concept.

Unfortunately for Psihoyos, Apple never reached an agreement with him. Instead of developing another concept for its advertisements, the complaint noted that Apple went ahead and used Psihoyos' material anyway. Psihoyos' attorney Richard Kaudy wrote in the complaint that Apple knowingly ignored Psihoyos' "rights and feelings" and any profits that Apple generated from Psihoyos' work were kept for itself.

A separate civil complaint charges that Apple's iTunes music store is an acting catalyst for music infringement. According to the suit, Avril Lavigne's hit single "Girlfriend" is based on another song from the 1970's called "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" by James Gangwer and Tommy Dunbar. According to plaintiffs Gangwer and Dunbar, any company that sells and publishes Lavigne's song is infringing on their original work.

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RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By Parhel on 7/5/2007 5:04:28 PM , Rating: 2
I would have to hear both songs to have an opinion on that. It wouldn't be the first time that an artist has stolen another's work and been sued for it. If she did, in fact, rip off their song, why would there be anything wrong with the lawsuit?

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By Oregonian2 on 7/5/2007 5:05:43 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly! Pirating in another form. RIAA should be in favor of the suit.

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By rcc on 7/5/2007 5:13:01 PM , Rating: 2
Only that it named Apple. Why not every music store that sells the CD, every radio station that plays it, etc.

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By tmp8000 on 7/5/2007 5:17:12 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah that was my point, I've heard both songs and I do think they MAY have at least grounds for a settlement, her chorus sounds exactly like theirs. But naming Apple in the suit is so money hungry.

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By Parhel on 7/5/2007 5:30:14 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry, I totally missed that. After rereading the post, your point was obvious. You're right, it doesn't make any sense to sue Apple, unless they also planned on sueing every record store that's every sold a copy.

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By OrSin on 8/1/2007 12:12:11 PM , Rating: 1
Apple is being sued because the orginal artist was already sued and lost. You can no long buy the song anywhere but on Itunes, and maybe some record stores that sell used stuff. Apple probably just put all the song from his record up and didn't realize that one song was pulled. But if apple know and didnt care, then they are in trouble.

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By glenn8 on 7/5/2007 5:18:35 PM , Rating: 2
What's wrong is they're suing Apple. Unless Apple owns the rights to Avril's song, it just doesn't make sense. But of course in sue-happy America you go after the one with the deepest pockets... so in a way it makes perfect sense.

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By Locutus465 on 7/5/2007 5:52:08 PM , Rating: 2
Even if it infrindges, how is apple at fault? In this case the are not any different than a brick and morter cd store.

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By Ajax9000 on 7/5/2007 9:41:39 PM , Rating: 2
I think the expression is:
"For every hit, a writ"

RE: Terrible Lawsuit
By retrospooty on 7/6/2007 10:35:13 AM , Rating: 3
"I would have to hear both songs to have an opinion on that. It wouldn't be the first time that an artist has stolen another's work and been sued for it."

for the sake of arguement lets assume it was stolen/copied... Why sue Apple? They have nothing to do with that.

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