Beastie Boys vs. Monster Energy

I just read an article from MTV News called, “Beastie Boys Sue Monster Energy For Copyright Infringement”, this is written by Rob Markman. You can find the link to this article below.

Markman states, “Looks like the Beastie Boys didn’t grant Monster Energy Drink a license to ill, and now the group is looking for payback.” The band sued Monster Energy Corp. because the company used a number of their songs in a promotional video without licensing the music. The songs, “Sabotage,” “So What’cha Want” and “Looking Down the Barrel of a Gun” Were all used by the company in a promo video for their 2012 Ruckus in the Rockies. Over three minutes of musical composition was used for the advertisement.

The company wanted to use the music to build excitement for their snowboarding competition and thought it would fire people up to come out and experience the event. They should have gotten a Synchronization License to broadcast the music on their webpage. That way they wouldn’t be getting sued for an unspecified amount of damages and other intellectual property violations.

I believe that the infringement by Monster was harmful to the Beastie Boys because their name was now associated with something they did not want to be associated with. They were also not receiving any monetary funds for the use of their recordings. The actions by Monster were harmful to the industry because if this went unnoticed other large companies would probably think its ok to use whatever musical work they wanted. I can’t see how this was harmful to society other than just creating some disappointment in Monster and the Beastie Boys for all of their immaturity in all of this.

I actually think that the current licensing structure used by publishing companies is in a pretty good place right now. There is no watertight way stop future acts of infringement. Companies, artists, performers, directors, promoters, ad agencies and everyone else just need to pay more attention to what they are doing. When in doubt look it up, cite and get the correct licensing. I understand that a lot of people think it is cheaper to use a sample now and see if they get caught, but the court costs are a lot more expensive than doing things the right way. People need to get rid of the idea that it is easier to ask for forgiveness than permission.

Markman, R. (2010, August 12). Beastie Boys Sue Monster Energy For Copyright Infringement – Music, Celebrity, Artist News | New Music Videos, Reality TV Shows, Celebrity News, Pop Culture | MTV. Retrieved June 26, 2013, from

1976., a. f. (n.d.). Music Publishing And Licensing 101 | Music Licensing : License Your Music : Licensing Store | . Retrieved June 26, 2013, from

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