Monday, March 24, 2008

Bars and Nightclubs Get Busted By ASCAP

ASCAP Sues 29 Establishments

New York, NY, March 24, 2008: The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) today announced that it has filed 29 separate infringement actions against nightclubs, bars and restaurants in 22 states and the District of Columbia.

In each of the cases filed today, the business establishment has publicly performed the copyrighted musical works of ASCAP's songwriter, composer and music publisher members without obtaining a license from ASCAP to do so. ASCAP reached out to the owners of each of the establishments repeatedly over a significant period of time before taking legal action. In every instance, the establishment refused to obtain a license, but continued to perform ASCAP members' music without permission, resulting in the filing of the infringement actions.

ASCAP protects the rights of its members by licensing and distributing royalties for the non-dramatic public performances of their copyrighted works. Those licensed by ASCAP include any establishment or business that wants to perform copyrighted music publicly.

"By filing these 29 actions at the same time, ASCAP is aiming to heighten awareness among music users and the public that it is a Federal offense to perform copyrighted music without permission," said Vincent Candilora, ASCAP Senior Vice President of Licensing. "ASCAP's priority is to serve as a voice and advocate for its more than 315,000 members who are essentially the smallest of small business owners. ASCAP not only has a right to collect license fees from the users of music, but it also has a responsibility to its members to ensure they are adequately compensated for their hard work."

Any business using copyrighted music has the opportunity to obtain permission to do so lawfully, through acceptance of a license covering the use of the more than 8.5 million copyrighted songs and compositions in the ASCAP repertory. Nearly 90% of the license fees ASCAP collects are paid as royalties directly to songwriters, composers and music publishers. The balance covers ASCAP's operating costs, which are the lowest of any performing rights organization in the world.

"Using music is a vital part of the total service that businesses offer, both in attracting customers and driving more revenue," continued Candilora. "By accepting an ASCAP license, business owners can legally use music in ASCAP's popular and ever-increasing repertory."

Frequently Asked Questions about licensing can be found on ASCAP's website here.

The establishments listed below have performed publicly the copyrighted musical works of ASCAP's songwriter, composer and music publisher members without receiving their permission to do so, resulting in lost income for these music creators.

Establishment, City, State
Brookside Sports Bar & Grille, Surprise, AZ
Bar 330, Brea, CA
Paulie's Upper Deck, Redondo Beach, CA
Frankie's Too!, Falcon, CO
The Guards / Griffin Room, Washington, DC
Matilda's Pub & Barbie, Newark, DE
Ultra Lounge, West Palm Beach, FL
Best Western - Sea Breeze Lounge, Fernandina Beach, FL
Wrigleyville North, Chicago, IL
Ice Lounge, Indianapolis, IN
Tin Alley Grill, Framingham, MA
The Quarter Bistro & Tavern, Ann Arbor, MI
Scott's 1029 Bar, Minneapolis, MN
Parrot's Sports Bar, St. Peters, MO
Black Tie Nightlife, Raleigh, NC
Dexter's, Riverdale, NJ
One, New York, NY
Cannon's Black Thorn Inn, Rockville Centre, NY
Fireside Inn, Port Crane, NY
Club Majestic, Tulsa, OK
Emerson's Pub, York, PA
Charleston Beer Works, Charleston, SC
Chattanooga Food & Drink, Chattanooga, TN
Drillers, Houston, TX
Pat's Pub, The Colony, TX
Vette's Sports Grill, Odessa, TX
Five 01 City Grill, Virginia Beach, VA
The Flame, Spokane, WA
Long Wong's, Milwaukee, WI

Established in 1914, ASCAP is the first and leading U.S. Performing Rights Organization representing the world's largest repertory totaling over 8.5 million copyrighted musical works of every style and genre from more than 315,000 songwriter, composer and music publisher members. ASCAP has representation arrangements with over 90 music rights organizations such that the ASCAP repertory is represented in nearly every country around the world. ASCAP protects the rights of its members and foreign affiliates by licensing the public performances of their copyrighted works and distributing royalties based upon surveyed performances. ASCAP is the only American Performing Rights Organization owned and governed by its writer and publisher members.

Source [ASCAP] via [Billboard]

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