Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Eminem Royalty Trail Starts

A lawsuit filed against Aftermath/Interscope Records by Eminem's former production partners over the rapper's digital royalty rates will go to trial today (February 24).

F.B.T Productions and Em2M, who originally signed Eminem to their Web Entertainment label in 1995, claim they have received an unfair split of royalties from Eminem's internet downloads and ringtone sales under an agreement signed with Aftermath/Interscope in 1998.

F.B.T and Em2m furnished Eminem's services to Aftermath/Interscope in the 1998 agreement and as part of the deal, they were to receive accounting statements and royalties in connection with certain Eminem recordings.

F.B.T and Em2m claim Aftermath/Interscope have withheld over a million dollars in royalties. They believe they should be receiving 50 percent of net receipts from downloads and ringtones rather than the lesser artist royalty rate based on sales.

According to The Wrap, Interscope CEO Jimmy Iovine and Apple Computers CEO Steve Jobs will testify during the trial.

Eminem, who is not a party in the suit, is expected not to appear during the trial.

The outcome of the case will prove to be important because it could determine in the future how much artists are entitled to when their music is sold by labels to third parties like Apple's iTunes and phone companies.

“This is very significant case,” Jay Cooper, an entertainment lawyer, told The Wrap. “A lot of people are going to be watching very closely because there’s a lot of money involved.”

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