After a wave of bad publicity for winning a lawsuit against Goliath against David, Eric Clapton’s management have announced that they have no plans to collect money owed by a German woman sued for selling a Pirate CD from a 1980s Clapton concert. On ebay.
The woman had been ordered to pay around $ 4,000 after a judge ruled that she infringed Clapton’s copyright by trying to sell the over 30-year-old CD, which her late husband bought in a department store, for 9.95 euros, or about $ 11.20. . The illicit disc was removed from the site after a day and was not actually sold.
In response to what it called “often misleading press reports,” Clapton management issued a statement on Wednesday effectively acknowledging that it had not been right to pick on a woman who had failed. apparently not realized that she was breaking the law by putting the illicit concert CD up for sale… even though he criticized her for not having settled the case once it had been brought to her attention.
The statement, addressed to the musician’s fan club, said that “when all the facts of this particular case came to light and it was clear that the individual was not the type of person that Eric Clapton or his household of records wish to target, Eric Clapton has decided not to take further action and does not intend to recover the costs awarded to him by the court. Moreover, he hopes that the person will not incur. no additional costs itself. “
According to the statement, “the intention is not to target individuals selling isolated CDs from their own collection, but rather active smugglers making unauthorized copies for sale. In the case of an individual selling unauthorized items from a personal collection, if, upon receipt of a “cease and desist” letter, the offending items are removed, the charge would be minimal or could be waived. … This case could have been settled quickly at minimal cost, but unfortunately, in response to the first standard letter from German lawyers, the individual’s response included the line: “Do not hesitate to take legal action. justice if you insist on the demands. ‘”
In addition to ordering her to pay court fees and legal fees for both parties, the German court also ruled that if the widow re-recorded the pirate CD, she could face six months in prison. His lawyer had said they intended to appeal the verdict.
Clapton has been the subject of considerable controversy over the past two years, due to his anti-containment songs and his refusal to perform in venues requiring proof of vaccination. While these positions resulted in applause from some fans and derision from others, there was little support for going after an average fan, in what was widely viewed as an unforced error. public relations.
Management described the action as a fairly automated response to widespread hacking in Germany, and noted that 95% of respondents who are threatened with similar claims settle out of court. The statement also downplayed the musician’s involvement in the lawsuit.
“Germany is one of the many countries where sales of illegal, unauthorized and generally low-quality bootleg CDs are rife, hurting both the industry and buyers of substandard products,” says the press release from its management. “Over a period of more than 10 years, the German lawyers appointed by Eric Clapton, and a significant number of other well-known artists and record companies, have successfully pursued thousands of infringement cases in the legal proceedings. routine author …
“Eric Clapton’s lawyers and management team (rather than Eric personally) identify whether an item offered for sale is illegal, and a statement confirming that it is signed, but subsequently Eric Clapton does is involved in no individual case, and 95% of cases are resolved before going to court.