Music Industry Majors Sue Hip-Hop Streaming Site Spinrilla

Spinrilla HP - Screengrab - H 2017
Courtesy of Spinrilla

Spinrilla HP - Screengrab - H 2017

Spinrilla may be a relatively new player in the streaming marketplace, but it's already caught the attention of several major record labels that are suing the site for allegedly sharing unauthorized music with millions of users. 

The Recording Industry Association of America on Friday filed suit against Spinrilla and its founder Jeffery Dylan Copeland in Georgia federal court on behalf of UMG, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Bros. Records, Atlantic Recording Corporation and LaFace Records.

Kendrick Lamar, Kanye West and Beyonce are among the artists that Spinrilla offers through its streaming site and app who aren't being paid for the use of their music, according to the complaint. The description of the service evokes memories of Napster, the original music industry troublemaker.

"Through the Spinrilla website and apps, users with an artist account can upload content that any other user can then download or stream on demand for free, an unlimited number of times," writes attorney James Lamberth in the complaint. "A substantial amount of content uploaded to the Spinrilla website and apps consists of popular sound recordings whose copyrights are owned by Plaintiffs."

RIAA says it has identified more than 21,000 copyrighted sound recordings owned by the plaintiffs that are available through the service. The labels are suing for direct and secondary copyright infringement and are seeking actual or statutory damages and an injunction.

"Spinrilla specializes in ripping off music creators by offering thousands of unlicensed sound recordings for free," the RIAA said in a statement about the lawsuit. "Fans today have access to millions upon millions of songs from innovative platforms and services that pay creators — this kind of illicit activity has no place in today’s music marketplace.”

Spinrilla did not immediately respond to a request for comment. It's worth noting the website features a section dedicated to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and includes a template for takedown requests. "Spinrilla takes copyright infringement very seriously," says the site. "In order to provide the best mixtapes and ensure top quality we do not allow infringed upon works to be posted on our website."