March 21, 2006

Last week Judge Todd Campbell of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee issued a ban on an album and online song sales for reasons of unauthorized “sampling.” The injunction affects the 1994 debut album “Ready to Die” by the Notorious B.I.G., the New York rapper slain in 1997 at the age of 24. Bridgeport Music and Westbound Records sued Bad Boy Entertainment, University Records, and Sean “Diddy” Combs, alleging sampling of the song “Singing in the Morning” by the Ohio Players. Judge Campbell ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, ordered over $700k in direct damages, $3.5M in punitive damages, and “to vindicate the integrity of copyright law,” he ordered a halt to all sales of the album (traditional brick and mortar as well as online stores), as well as internet downloads and on-air radio play of the title track from the album. “Sampling” is the concept of taking background music, beats, and vocals from earlier-released songs and incorporating them, in part, into a new sound recording.

ABC News Press Release: LINK

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Mark Reichel
Reichel IP LLC

I am a patent attorney with Reichel IP LLC, where I concentrate my practice on patent drafting and prosecution, trademarks, and general intellectual property matters. I currently focus on the preparation and prosecution of medical device and other life sciences patent applications, and being actively involved in a number of local not-for-profit organizations.

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