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Eminem's Music Publisher Sues Apple Over Songs On iTunes

Eminem's music publisher, Eight Mile Style, is suing Apple, claiming they never authorized the sale of more than ninety songs on iTunes.

Apple maintains it has a valid agreement to distribute the songs on its digital downloads service but Eight Mile's real beef is with Aftermath Records, which controls the recordings, because they claim the company didn't have the right to make deals on digital downloads.

According to the court documents, Eminem's publisher says that Aftermath took in approximately $4 million through iTunes downloads of the songs and Apple earned more than $2.5 million, including some $466,000 from his biggest hit 'Lose Yourself'.

They allege that Aftermath only had the rights to negotiate CD sales, not online distribution.

However, lawyers for Apple and Aftermath Records say Eminem doesn't have a leg to stand on because "the parties agreed that Aftermath and its distributors and licensees would have the exclusive right to exploit the masters embodying the Eminem compositions in any and all forms of media now known or hereinafter developed."

The non-jury trial is expected to start Thursday in the rapper's hometown of Detroit, unless a settlement is reached before then.

It's not the first time that the rapper has sued Apple. Four years ago, Eminem sued Apple after it ran a television ad with a figure dancing to the 'Lose Yourself'.

Eminem said Apple's use of the song amounted to a product endorsement and it wasn't something he had agreed to. The two eventually settled out of court.

September 23, 2009 |

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