Copyright Palaver: ‘IT IS N200 MILLION OR NOTHING’, PAUL PLAY TELLS ETISALAT
Soulful singer, Paul Play Dairo, has filed a N200m lawsuit against telecommunications giants, Etisalat, for using his hit song, Mosorire, in its popular reality series, Nigerian Idol, without his consent.
Optima Media Group was made a co-defendant in the suit filed at a Lagos High Court and marked FHC/CS/581/2014. Paul stated that the defendants had used his song, Mosorire, which he composed himself, to promote their TV show, Nigerian Idol in 2012 and 2013. He further alleged that during the course of the programme, a contestant was made to reproduce his song and sing it without his express permission as the owner of the song. In the said court paper, Paul Play said, “I am the copyright owner of the work named and tagged “Mosorire”, contained in my repertoire, exclusively for the jurisdiction of Nigeria and the authority or permission to exploit such work can only be obtained from me. However, the defendants being an organiser of a television reality show tagged, “Nigerian Idol” caused the use, adaptation and deployment of my said work titled, “Mosorire” on the said show without my consent, and which was broadcast to several millions of television viewers throughout the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the rest of Africa for 2012 and 2013 editions.”
He added that as a singer and composer, he was entitled to an annual fee of N100m on the track, making it N200m for the two years. He concluded that having made use of his song without reaching out to him for permission, the defendants, Etisalat and Optima Media Group, had made him lose some money. According to him, they “made gains and improved on their own brand image.”
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