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#1129731 - 08/11/17 08:07 AM Ferrick v.Spotify  
Joined: Aug 2002
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Everett Adams Online content
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Everett Adams  Online Content
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I got some post cards in the mail saying I may have a claim against Spotify for a share of a settlement for wrong use of songs. Not sure what it is all about, some class action lawsuit. I don't expect I'll get much from it but some will, they settled for $30 million dollars. Anyone here get some of these notices?

#1129734 - 08/11/17 09:15 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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John Lawrence Schick Offline
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John Lawrence Schick  Offline
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Got the same post card Everett. I didn't read it. Are we supposed to do something?

Best, John smile

#1129735 - 08/11/17 09:56 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Colin Ward Online content
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Me too. You don't have to do anything unless you want to opt out. I'll let you know when my million arrives.


Colin

I try to critique as if you mean business.....

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#1129736 - 08/11/17 10:21 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Ray E. Strode Online content
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Ray E. Strode  Online Content
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Yes,
I also received the notice. Since I have nothing on any music service it didn't concern me.


Ray E. Strode
#1129762 - 08/11/17 10:20 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Jody Whitesides Offline
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Yes, I got one. I also went and read the website as well as did a search about the artist.

This is the claim:

"The plaintiffs are Melissa Ferrick, Jaco Pastorius, Inc., and Gerencia 360 Publishing, Inc. They allege that they own copyrights for which registration has been issued or applied for in musical compositions that Spotify made available for interactive streaming and/or limited downloading without a license, and that Spotify did so with respect to other musical compositions owned by others."

Unfortunately, I'm not privy to the distribution rights of each entity. However I looked up Ferrick and noticed that she's a CD Baby artist. My speculative guess is, she has a Digital Distribution agreement in place, which would make this frivolous. As for Jaco, and Gerencia, I have no idea.

There's another lawsuit of a similar sort from the TriChordist dude. I believe his is about the NOIs that are supposed to make their way to the publishing rights holders. His claim is that he's not getting his. When asked who is doing his distribution - he refuses to answer. Which tells me, somewhere in the distribution chain, someone screwed up the info on his songs.

For both of these people, its likely not Spotify's fault. I get proper NOIs constantly, my distributors have my correct information. I also read contracts very carefully, mostly due to a problematic distribution deal via The Orchard that came back to bite me in the ass. Fortunately I got out of that contract unscathed. Based on that, I'm guessing that in the case of Ferrick, someone didn't read their contract well enough.

But I could be wrong.


Jody Whitesides
A Funky Audio Lap Dance For Your Ears!
www.jodywhitesides.com
#1129774 - 08/12/17 08:19 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Dave Rice Online content
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Dave Rice  Online Content
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Another brick in the wall of music shame.

#1129811 - 08/13/17 04:57 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Brian Austin Whitney Online content
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Melissa is a very successful artist and is also a JPF member (and award nominees multiple times). I may send her a note to get clarification, but she's no clueless amateur. She's a long time big time earning artist who simply preferred to use CD Baby to distribute. If she made a mistake in licensing, then CD Baby would be the target first, but she's not suing them I am guessing she didn't give permission and neither did CD Baby and so they somehow put her stuff up there without permission. Will look into it more.


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#1129847 - 08/14/17 01:56 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Brian Austin Whitney]  
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Jody Whitesides Offline
Jody Whitesides  Offline

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Originally Posted by Brian Austin Whitney
Melissa is a very successful artist and is also a JPF member (and award nominees multiple times). I may send her a note to get clarification, but she's no clueless amateur. She's a long time big time earning artist who simply preferred to use CD Baby to distribute. If she made a mistake in licensing, then CD Baby would be the target first, but she's not suing them I am guessing she didn't give permission and neither did CD Baby and so they somehow put her stuff up there without permission. Will look into it more.

I'm not saying she's a clueless amateur.

My guess is, something is amiss somewhere else in the chain. I searched her out and she's on multiple digital sites (not just Spotify) which makes it likely that there was intent to distribute digitally. And nearly every distribution agreement I've seen actually has a clause stating they will put content into any new store or service as it comes out. Also, if she made the mistake with licensing, then its not Spotify's or even CD Baby's fault (as CD Baby's digital distribution agreement is very well spelled out, as are the various levels in how to distribute digitally).

Please find out. I'd like to know the exact reason that led to this they don't have a license thing.


Jody Whitesides
A Funky Audio Lap Dance For Your Ears!
www.jodywhitesides.com
#1130388 - 09/03/17 09:14 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Pat Hardy Offline
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Originally Posted by Everett Adams
I got some post cards in the mail saying I may have a claim against Spotify for a share of a settlement for wrong use of songs. Not sure what it is all about, some class action lawsuit. I don't expect I'll get much from it but some will, they settled for $30 million dollars. Anyone here get some of these notices?



I got one of these, as well. What I think means is that Spotify has your tunes available for streaming without having filed a compulsory license. If your tunes are being streamed, it is not likely they are paying you royalties. But, that being said, unless they are being streamed to the tune of millions, we're not talking more than pennies for most folks. I wouldn't be to concerned about it. But, who knows, the lawsuit might give you punitive damages collectively awarded to everyone in the class, so go to the website listed on the card, and do whatever it asks you to do, it wouldn't hurt, just in case some serious bucks float our way. I'm going to.

#1130389 - 09/03/17 09:17 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Jody Whitesides]  
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Pat Hardy Offline
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Pat Hardy  Offline
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Originally Posted by Jody Whitesides


My speculative guess is, she has a Digital Distribution agreement in place, which would make this frivolous.

But I could be wrong.


Yes, you could be, so I wouldn't make such an assumption, for the lawsuit might be about the CD baby clause being abused, and you just might get an award, who knows. No harm in going to the website and filling out a form.

#1130391 - 09/04/17 01:33 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Pat Hardy]  
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Jody Whitesides Offline
Jody Whitesides  Offline

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Originally Posted by Pat Hardy
Yes, you could be, so I wouldn't make such an assumption, for the lawsuit might be about the CD baby clause being abused, and you just might get an award, who knows. No harm in going to the website and filling out a form.

Pat, I'm pretty sure you don't know my history with that agreement or CD Baby. I was the very first artist from CD Baby to sign that digital distribution agreement.

Thus as someone who has close personal knowledge of the CD Baby contract, the amount of money spent on making sure it was done right, I'd say I know it pretty darn well. I also know the early history of that contract, what happened behind the scenes to make it possible and also how CD Baby stayed in the digital distribution game when it was going to dump it. That being said - I stand by my theory. I highly doubt there is any "abuse" of a clause. The lawsuit is about Spotify, not CD Baby, how was that assumption made?

Originally Posted by Pat Hardy
What I think means is that Spotify has your tunes available for streaming without having filed a compulsory license. If your tunes are being streamed, it is not likely they are paying you royalties. But, that being said, unless they are being streamed to the tune of millions, we're not talking more than pennies for most folks. I wouldn't be to concerned about it. But, who knows, the lawsuit might give you punitive damages collectively awarded to everyone in the class, so go to the website listed on the card, and do whatever it asks you to do, it wouldn't hurt, just in case some serious bucks float our way. I'm going to.

I've written the same response to several people on different websites about the whole NOI thing. I'll repeat it here: If you're not getting your NOIs for any digital services (Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Tidal, et al), then you have made a mistake somewhere in your metadata, registrations and your distribution chain. That is your fault, not the services. How do I know? I constantly get NOIs almost weekly. For Spotify they come from Harry Fox, from everyone else, they tend to come from Music Reports. I've asked the exact same question about who does the complaining party have distribution with - and every single time and I mean: EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. They refuse to answer. I think the reason behind that is, they're afraid to admit that they somehow f'd up. Either, screwed up the metadata. Screwed up their registration. Screwed up the contract. Something. Its not easy to dot all your I's and cross your T's as a non-signed artist. But the buck has to stop somewhere and it should stop with the artist or their management of their catalog, not the distributor, not the service. That being typed, the only thing you need to do in relation to the mentioned lawsuit is, participate or opt out. If you don't opt out, you automatically stay in.

As far as the part about not getting paid on small amounts streams - that's Just Plain Wrong. They pay on every stream, Spotify especially. But are you seeing every angle of royalty? Meaning not only the Master Right (which is what CD Baby collects), but the Writer's, the Publisher's and the Mechanicals? They all add up. Be diligent. Stay on top of your PRO. Be registered with Harry Fox and Music Reports for the Mechanicals if you own your publishing. Its your money, collect it!


Jody Whitesides
A Funky Audio Lap Dance For Your Ears!
www.jodywhitesides.com
#1130395 - 09/04/17 10:48 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Martin Lide Online content
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Just a footnote...

Reverbnation sent me notification in the past week that there was more money in my account due to activity on Spotify. In the past quarter or so my income off of one of my songs rose from $2.16 to $2.17.

With that revenue stream established I'm thinking about forming an LLC and taking it public. wink

#1130397 - 09/04/17 11:20 AM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Gavin Sinclair Offline
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Looks like the beers are on you, Martin!

#1130412 - 09/04/17 05:56 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Gavin Sinclair]  
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Martin Lide Online content
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Originally Posted by Gavin Sinclair
Looks like the beers are on you, Martin!


I might celebrate by taking yourself and some other folks on cruise Gavin. After that, I 'll figure out what to do with the rest of the money.

#1130413 - 09/04/17 06:31 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Gavin Sinclair Offline
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I might chip in with some of the money I have saved up to this point by not putting anything on Spotify. That's if I don't go and blow it by doing so first.

#1130414 - 09/04/17 07:27 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Gavin Sinclair]  
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Martin Lide Online content
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Martin Lide  Online Content
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Originally Posted by Gavin Sinclair
I might chip in with some of the money I have saved up to this point by not putting anything on Spotify. That's if I don't go and blow it by doing so first.


That's the same kind of thinking used by the US Congress to pass and fund their legislation. You are an excellent student in the ways of this country. smile

#1130415 - 09/04/17 07:34 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Jody Whitesides]  
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Pat Hardy Offline
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Originally Posted by Jody Whitesides


As far as the part about not getting paid on small amounts streams - that's Just Plain Wrong. They pay on every stream, Spotify especially. But are you seeing every angle of royalty? Meaning not only the Master Right (which is what CD Baby collects), but the Writer's, the Publisher's and the Mechanicals? They all add up. Be diligent. Stay on top of your PRO. Be registered with Harry Fox and Music Reports for the Mechanicals if you own your publishing. Its your money, collect it!


Fair enough, and that includes registering your recordings on Soundexchange ( for streams ) Harry Fox ( for compulsory licenses ) and your PRO ( SESAC, BMI, or ASCAP ) for performance royalties.

As for potential abuse of clauses, I really don't know, My position is who knows what lawyers will dig up in the way of arcane case law, etc, for a class action, and maybe, just maybe, might get a ruling that results in some money for you. Probably not, but going to the website and filling out a form, no harm in that. And you're right, I wasn't aware of your history with CDBaby, thanks for the heads up.

Last edited by Pat Hardy; 09/04/17 07:39 PM.
#1130918 - 09/22/17 03:07 PM Re: Ferrick v.Spotify [Re: Everett Adams]  
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Jody Whitesides Offline
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Recently came across another article by another guy who is knowledgeable about the industry. Which gave me an inkling to come back and reiterate a point.

It all stops with the artist or label who released the song. Somewhere prior to the streaming services (in this case, Spotify) getting the music and data - someone got the data wrong and its most likely the person who filled out the distribution!

That being said, I'm really quite curious as to why its only Ferrick vs Spotify and not also Ferrick vs Apple, Ferrick vs Deezer, Ferrick vs Tidal, etc. This lawsuit should be going after all the digital services, not only Spotify.

Maybe this is misdirected anger due to problems at Harry Fox, Music Reports who are having difficult times getting all the NOIs out. Why? Because the data, about many songs, is not properly filled out. Those that are currently suing for such things are attempting to take advantage of a part of the law that states a streaming service has to send out the NOI and wait 30 days prior to putting the music on the service. That's extremely antiquated for any artist that is interested in releasing a song in a timely manner.

What do I mean by that?

Lets say you decide to write a song and donate proceeds to Hurricane Irma relief. You write the song the day it goes down and release it that afternoon to all the digital services. Generally, you can have a song on within about 24 hours of distribution submission. You start racking up sales/streams, and then you get paid from your distributor. Then you donate the money. Yippee, everyone is happy.

Now, lets say that every service followed the current letter-of-the-law and made you wait the 30 days after you wished to have it distributed. In this current climate of short attention spans, its likely most people wouldn't give a rats ass 30 days afterwards. Your timely song now becomes untimely.

Granted that's not the general rule for songs being released.

But for those artists who truly hate the industry and the fact that streaming is the de facto standard, by all means do us all a favor and stop distributing your music digitally!! It will make the rest of us happier.

p.s. - the easy way to solve all of this is to have one giant database that has all the relevant writer, publisher information for every song released. Oh and require every distributor to gather that information at the source and verify it. But most distributors might be too cheap to do that and may not care since artists appear to be vilifying the wrong part of the equation (meaning they're vilifying music streaming services).


Jody Whitesides
A Funky Audio Lap Dance For Your Ears!
www.jodywhitesides.com

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