US Supreme Court allows landmark music download lawsuit

11 Jan 2011

The US Supreme Court is allowing a lawsuit against four major record labels which claims they conspired to fix pricing for downloading songs online.

Sony Corp, Universal Music, Warner Music Group Corp and EMI made an appeal against this suit to the Supreme Court, however it ruled the case could go forward as the allegations were solid enough.

The suit claims that two online music services started by the companies, MusicNet and Pressplay, restrained the availability of music online and fixed high prices on downloads.

At the time, both services were legal alternatives to Napster, however, both services prevented users from adding songs to their MP3 players and customers were only allowed burn two songs to CDs per month.

The plaintiffs also maintain the record labels fixed prices, raising them even after they had completed the costly process of digitising their libraries of music. They charged 70 cents per song even though rival online music stores charged much less for their offerings.