Do Bars Really Get Sued for Playing Copyrighted Songs?

It depends. But funny enough I was just mentioning this to my class at SVA yesterday during our conversation on copyright.

A national songwriters’ organization sued a handful of bars nationwide this week, accusing them of violating federal law for failing to pay fees to use copyrighted music. One of those was Tanner’s Bar and Grill near Liberty, Missouri, which was slapped with a lawsuit after patrons sang The J. Geils Band’s “Centerfold” and two other well-known songs during a recent Tuesday karaoke night.

More here. And here’s a good link with more info on music and public performance.

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