Katy Perry, Capitol Records and her collaborators on the 2013 hit Dark Horse have filed an appeal against the copyright infringement judgment made about the song earlier this year, calling the decision “a grave miscarriage of justice”.
In late July, a Los Angeles jury decided that Dark Horse infringed the copyright of 2008 Christian Rap song Joyful Noise by Flame (aka Marcus Gray) and on August 1 the defendants were ordered to pay a total of $2.8 million.
Perry was ordered to pay $550,000, Capitol nearly $1.3 million, with the New York Times reporting that Dark Horse collaborators Max Martin owes $253,000; Dr. Luke owes $61,000 personally, while his company, Kasz Money Inc., owes $189,000.
Perry, Capitol et al. have asked for the judgment to be overturned, or for there to be a new trial due to “the legally unsupportable jury verdicts” in the cases, adding that the verdicts “are widely recognized within the music industry — and beyond — as a grave miscarriage of justice”.
As reported by Variety, the defendants’ appeal, filed with the court on October 9, adds that “the erroneous verdicts in this case and the precedent established thereby present serious harm to music creators and to the music industry as a whole”.
“The erroneous verdicts in this case and the precedent established thereby present serious harm to music creators and to the music industry as a whole.”
The appeal argues that the number of views gained by Joyful Noise “can hardly constitute widespread dissemination” and refers to the track’s ‘few’ million views as “an undisputed ‘drop in the bucket’ in modern day view count statistics”.
“No reasonable factfinder could have concluded that ‘Joyful Noise’ was so well-known that it could be reasonably inferred that Defendants heard it, particularly in this digital age of content overload, with billions of videos and songs available to users with trillions of streams,” stated the filing.
“The few million views of ‘Joyful Noise’ on the Internet presented by Plaintiffs, over a period of five years, equals an undisputed ‘drop in the bucket’ in modern day view count statistics — and can hardly constitute widespread dissemination.”Music Business Worldwide