Universal to sue online music site Grooveshark for copyright infringement

Record company claims site have uploaded over 100,000 songs illicitly

Universal have filed a lawsuit against online music streaming service Grooveshark, according to reports.

The record company – which is home to the likes of Klaxons and Jessie J – are claiming that Grooveshark, which allows users to search, stream and upload music, have uploaded more than 100,000 songs illicitly to their site.

According to CNET, Universal have obtained e-mails and other records proving that Grooveshark employees posted pirated songs on their service and are seeking maximum statutory damages of up to $150,000 (£95,000) per infringement.

Previously, Grooveshark has claimed that they are not liable for copyright violations committed by their users due to the protection provided by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, but the same protocols do not apply to service providers for acts of infringement.

Grooveshark‘s vice president of external affairs Paul Geller said that the company had yet to see the legal and complaint, and would not be commenting on the dispute.

Last week, it was reported that Universal Music had agreed a deal to purchase the recorded music division of EMI for £1.2 billion. Artists on EMI include the likes of The Beatles, Coldplay and Tinie Tempah.

Universal, meanwhile, are being sued by Public Enemy’s Chuck D after he alleged that they had underpaid him his royalties for digital downloads, although a UMG spokesperson described the rapper’s complaint as suffering from “serious flaws and weaknesses”.