The Rambler :: blog

Monday, November 21, 2005

Madonna loses 'Frozen' plagiarism case 

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Madonna has lost the plagiarism case made against her by Salvatore Acquaviva. Acqauviva's claim that 'Frozen' uses 4 bars of his song 'Ma vie fout l'camp' has been upheld by a Belgian court, with costly implications for Madonna and her record companies. The judge has ordered radio and TV stations in Belgium to stop playing 'Frozen', and EMI, Sony and Warners must withdraw the single, and Ray of Light from sale in the country.

Personally, I find these court decisions fascinating, from a musical point of view, because they push music into a strange role - as forensic evidence (worth large sums of money to whoever wins the case). This is a completely new sort of listening that - as intellectual property rights are warped closer and closer to the physical property model - is becoming ever more prevalent. It's a modern phenomenon that gives sounds considerable responsibilities (that they cannot always bear), and that is pretty much alien to my own experience of music. I therefore find it absolutely intriguing. Does anyone know any more details about this case - in particular the four bars Madonna has been judged to have nicked?

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