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Music Site Settles Beatles Suit for $1 Million

blue beat
BlueBeat, a site that sells streaming music by a range of artists, just settled a federal lawsuit that a bunch of pissed-off record labels had brought against it for selling and streaming Beatles songs. The songs were posted about a year before Apple released them on iTunes and were sold for just $0.25 each. By the time BlueBeat was forced to pull them, more than 67,000 songs had been sold. The settlement was for $950,000 -- roughly the cost of the labels' attorney fees.

But that's not even the strange part. That comes into play with BlueBeat's own copyright system. In its defense, BlueBeat's lawyers argued that the site founder had created a method of "psycho-acoustic simulation" which makes the songs it hosts unique recordings under BlueBeat's copyright. And, indeed, BlueBeat still claims on its site: "All audio-visual works copyright © 2011 ...BlueBeat, Inc". The judge didn't buy it, and this settlement is just the tip of the iceberg. Another trial begins today to figure out how much BlueBeat owes EMI Group PLC, Capitol Records and Virgin Records America.

Tags: apple, beatles, BeatlesOnItunes, copyright, CopyrightInfringement, internet, itunes, law, music, streaming, virgin, web