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Record labels sue Ellen DeGeneres over music

Ellen DeGeneres
A group of the world's biggest recording companies have filed a lawsuit against the producers of The Ellen DeGeneres Show for allegedly using their copyrighted music songs without prior permission. The Show is popular daytime program, which averages about 3 million viewers daily, newly named "American Idol" judge and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres dances to popular tunes selected by a deejay.

The lawsuit was filed on Wednesday in federal court in Nashville, Tennessee. The lawsuit demanded an unspecified amount of damages stating that 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show', which is produced and distributed by various divisions of Time Warner Inc., has used more than 1,000 songs without permission. The suit does not specify the dollar amount it seeks in damages.

According to the lawsuit, record labels have asked the producers of the show why licenses were not obtained for use of the songs. The lawsuit stated, "As sophisticated consumers of music, defendants knew fully well that, regardless of the way they rolled, under the Copyright Act ... they needed a license to use the sound recordings lawfully."

The lawsuit was filed by Arista Music, Atlantic Recording Corporation, Big Beat Records, Capitol Records, Motown Record Company, Priority Records, Rhino Entertainment Company, Sire Records Company, Sony Music Entertainment, UMG Recordings, Virgin Records America, Warner Bros. The record labels claim that the producers of the show have acted with complete disregard for the legal framework of the music business.

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