Thursday, October 6, 2022

Judge Slashes ‘Blurred Lines’ Damages by Over $2 Million

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*A judge on Tuesday cut a copyright infringement verdict by more than $2 million against Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams over their 2013 hit “Blurred Lines,” but offered Marvin Gaye’s heirs a 50 percent royalty on future earnings from the song, reports The AP.

A federal jury in Los Angeles had sided with Gaye’s estate in March, finding that parts of his 1977 hit “Got to Give it Up” were copied by Thicke and Williams for their crossover hit.

The jury awarded $7.4 million in damages and profits. U.S. District Judge John Kronstadt on Tuesday said that amount was “excessive,” based on the evidence presented in the case. He pared back the total to $5.3 million.

Kronstadt denied a bid by Gaye’s heirs to stop distribution of “Blurred Lines,” instead ordering they be paid an ongoing 50 percent royalty of the song’s revenues.

Though the jury had cleared rapper T.I. in the case, Kronstadt ruled on Tuesday that he was also liable for infringement.

The attorney for Gaye’s heirs, Richard Busch, said the family is happy with most of the decision but is reviewing its options on the trimming of damages.

Howard King, a lawyer for Pharrell, Thicke, and T.I. said that composers should be encouraged to be inspired by their predecessors. “For the benefit of the entire songwriting community, we will pursue all remedies to correct this decision,” he said in an email.

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