YouTube Faces Music With New Lawsuit

    May 15, 2007

YouTube is facing yet another lawsuit, this time from musician and mandolin player David Grisman. Grisman, known for performing with the Grateful Dead and Jerry Garcia, is suing for what he says are unauthorized postings of his music.

Grisman, his business partner Craig Miller and their company Dawg Music sued Google and YouTube on May 10 in federal court in San Francisco.  In the suit, they are asking to represent other musicians and copyright holders whose works have been infringed.

In the complaint it says that Google and YouTube pays lip service to the idea they want to prevent copyright infringement but "In reality, however, they deliberately refuse to take meaningful steps to deter the rampant infringing activity readily apparent on YouTube which would, in turn, have a negative impact on the advertising and other reviews and other value achieved through the large volume of traffic on the YouTube Web site."

The suit is asking for money to compensate copyright owners for previous infringement and a court order to make YouTube alter the way they do business.

This latest suit against Google and YouTube comes at a time when a host of other lawsuits have been filed against the two companies for copyright violations. Viacom is suing for $1 billion, England’s soccer league, music publisher Bourne and the man who videotaped the beating of a trucker during the 1992 Los Angeles riots all have copyright suits against the companies.

Google and YouTube maintain that the Viacom lawsuit ignores the DMCA and they favor a jury trial. With all the litigation against YouTube, it will be interesting to see which cases make it to court, which ones will be settled and how many more suits will be filed.