Sony Music has filed a lawsuit against Triller over copyright infringement and breach of contract. The suit also alleges that Triller stopped paying licensing fees due under their agreement with Sony.
Sony Music allegedly entered into a content distribution agreement with Triller back in 2016. The two companies signed an amended version in December of 2021, but Triller stopped paying the license fees due under the agreement. Sony’s attorney Matthew Oppenheim released a statement on the lawsuit.
“Triller is a sophisticated party that purports to take intellectual property rights seriously when it benefits Triller,” Oppenheim wrote. The complaint went on to accuse Triller of displaying “brazen contempt for the intellectual property rights of Sony Music, its artists, and others.”
According to the complaint, Triller failed to make their monthly payments starting in March 2022. After months of requesting payments, Sony Music notified the social networking service that it was in breach of their contract. The agreement was then terminated on August 8.
Triller responds to Sony Music
However, Sony alleges that Triller continued to offer their artists’ music on the Triller app. The social network offered its own statement on the lawsuit to The Hollywood Reporter on Tuesday.
“We have yet to be served, but from what we’ve seen, this lawsuit from Sony Music grossly mischaracterizes our relationship with them and leans into the bully persona large music labels are often criticized for,” the statement read. The company also says that all Sony music has been removed from their platform.
Meanwhile, Sony criticized Triller for its acquisitions of other platforms while leaving millions in fees unpaid. “During the exact same months that Triller was failing to make licensing payments to Sony Music, it went on a purchasing spree,” the complaint stated. Triller recently acquired platforms such as Julius and Fangage.
The lawsuit is the latest in a string of complaints against Triller. The news drops two weeks after a suit from Timbaland and Swizz Beatz over lack of payment for Verzuz. Triller announced on Monday that it was planning to go public in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Written by Olan Bryant