Azoff Still Waiting On YouTube

Global Music Rights, the publishing rights organization powered by Irving Azoff, is still waiting for answers from the executives at YouTube regarding their use of 20,000 songs.

Photo: Jen Lowery Photography
"KIIS FM Jingle Ball," Staples Center, Los Angeles, Calif.

GMR, through attorney Howard King, has asked YouTube to remove 20,000 songs from clients like Pharrell Williams, Eagles, John Lennon and Smokey Robinson. GMR maintains YouTube, which is launching a subscription music service, does not have publishing rights to the songs, and a billion-dollar lawsuit could be on the horizon, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

PROs like ASCAP and BMI will issue multiyear licenses to digital companies like YouTube, and the licenses are maintained to their expiration even if the artists want out of the agreement – at least, so says YouTube.

In a letter to YouTube, King said the digital service was falsely arguing it could support its position based on the decision in Viacom v. YouTube in 2012.

“Somewhat embarrassingly, you failed to not that the District Court case you cited for that proposition was superseded and overturned, in part, by [a] subsequent appellate decision,” King wrote.

Azoff and GMR are apparently more upset at YouTube than at, say, Spotify because of YouTube’s “attitude” toward the situation.