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Turtles Lose Florida Battle for Oldies Royalties

Oct. 26, 2017, 5:15 PM

The Turtles can’t get royalties from Sirius XM Radio Inc. for broadcasting “Happy Together” and their other 1960s-era recordings to Florida listeners, the Florida Supreme Court ruled Oct. 26 (Flo & Eddie, Inc. v. Sirius XM Radio, Inc., Fla., No. SC16-1161, 10/26/17).

Recordings made before 1972 aren’t protected by federal copyright law, so only composers or songwriters—not recording artists who performed on a record—are compensated when oldies are played by services such as Sirius XM or Pandora Media Inc.

The Florida court rejected the argument that a criminal record piracy statute, which bars unauthorized reproduction and distribution...

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