UPDATE 2-Pink Floyd wins UK court battle with EMI label

* Court rules in Pink Floyd’s favour on Internet sales

* Another blow for troubled record label EMI

(Adds EMI statement)

By Mike Collett-White

LONDON, March 11 (BestGrowthStock) – British rock band Pink Floyd
won its court battle with EMI on Thursday with a ruling that
prevents the record company from selling single downloads on the
Internet from the group’s concept albums.

The outcome of a dispute over the level of royalties the
band received remained unclear, however, as that part of the
judgment was held in secret, the Press Association reported. A
source close to the band said those talks were “ongoing”.

Lawyers said it was the first time a royalties dispute
between artists and their record companies had been held in
private, after EMI successfully applied for a news blackout for
reasons of “commercial confidentiality”.

The ruling at London’s High Court is the latest blow to EMI,
the smallest of the four major record companies, which is
seeking new funds to avoid breaching debt covenants.

EMI sought to play down the court’s decision.

“The litigation has been running for well over a year and
most of its points have already been settled,” the company said
in a statement.

“This week’s court hearing was around the interpretation of
two contractual points, both linked to the digital sale of Pink
Floyd’s music. There are further arguments to be heard and the
case will go on for some time.”

EMI’s owner Terra Firma is also embroiled in a legal dispute
with Citigroup (C.N: ) over advice and financing the U.S. bank
provided to enable it to buy EMI in 2007.

Several top acts, including Pink Floyd and Queen, are
reportedly in talks with other labels, following the exodus of
the Rolling Stones and Radiohead since Terra Firma took over.

But EMI added in its statement: “We’re huge fans of Pink
Floyd whose great catalogue we have been representing for more
than 40 years and continue to represent exclusively and


Pink Floyd’s back catalogue at EMI has been outsold only by
that of the Beatles.

The band, whose albums include “The Dark Side of the Moon”
and “The Wall”, went to court to challenge EMI’s right to
“unbundle” their records and sell individual tracks online.

Judge Andrew Morritt accepted arguments by the group that
EMI was bound by a contract forbidding it from selling records
other than as complete albums without written consent.

The judge said the purpose of a clause in the contract,
drawn up more than a decade ago, was to “preserve the artistic
integrity of the albums”.

Pink Floyd alleged that EMI had allowed online downloads
from the albums and parts of tracks to be used as ringtones.

But Elizabeth Jones, representing EMI in court, countered
that the word record “plainly applies to the physical thing —
there is nothing to suggest it applies to online distribution”.

The judge ordered EMI to pay Pink Floyd’s costs in the case,
estimated at 60,000 pounds ($90,000), and refused the company
permission to appeal.

Pink Floyd’s influential and acclaimed body of work is a
valuable commodity. Members Roger Waters, David Gilmour and Nick
Mason all appeared on the 2009 Sunday Times Rich List with
personal fortunes estimated at 85 million, 78 million and 50
million pounds respectively.

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(Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato
and Mark Trevelyan)

UPDATE 2-Pink Floyd wins UK court battle with EMI label