Bad News for Grooveshark: EMI Terminates Music Licensing Contract

  • Grooveshark is hurting. The music streaming site no longer has legal access to the majority of licensed music after EMI terminated its contract.
  • Of the major music publishers, EMI was the only company that had made licensing agreements with Grooveshark; however, in January, EMI filed a lawsuit against the service, claiming Grooveshark hadn’t paid licensing fees since 2009.
  • “Grooveshark was recently forced to make the difficult decision to part ways with EMI due to EMI’s currently unsustainable streaming rates and EMI’s pending merger with Universal Music Group, which we consider monopolistic and in violation of antitrust laws,” Grooveshark announced in a statement to CNET. “To date, Grooveshark has paid over $2.6 million to EMI, but we have yet to find sustainable streaming rates. In spite of this, Grooveshark’s dedication to artists and rights holders remains the same.”
  • Florida-based Grooveshark says it has more than “30 million monthly users who stream more than 15 billion songs per year,” reports VentureBeat. “In November, it rolled out a new design of its online music player that includes a social layer.”