‘Weird Al’ Yankovic slaps Sony with $5 million lawsuit over royalties, YouTube videos

weird-al-yankovic

Musical funnyman “Weird Al” Yankovic isn’t laughing anymore. The parody singer-songwriter has sued Sony Music Entertainment for more than $5 million for a variety of alleged contractual breaches, and other unfair business dealings, reports CS Monitor. Sony has so far not responded to the suit, which was filed Friday in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

According to the suit, which was filed by Yankovic’s company, Ear Booker Enterprises, Sony “has incorrectly reported to Ear Booker the quantity of products sold, has incorrectly categorized those products, and has incorrectly paid Ear Booker for products for which it has accounted.”

Specifically, the suit claims that Sony double-charged Ear Booker for royalty advances; miscategorized marketing costs as production costs, which would make Ear Booker responsible for the expenses;  failure to provide receipts for billing; and other similar dishonest business practices.

In addition, Ear Booker says that Sony owes Yankovic’s company $2.5 million for Sony’s sale of YouTube shares. Prior to Google’s $1.65 billion purchase of YouTube in 2006, Sony, Universal, and Warner Music Group licensed some of its content to the video-streaming site in exchange for a portion of the company. The music labels reportedly received around $50 million when Google bought YouTube. Ear Booker claims it has a right to a portion of that money due to the popularity of Yankovic’s music videos.

In addtion, Ear Booker says Yankovic deserves a portion of Sony’s settlement with peer-to-peer file-sharing sites Napster, Kazaa, and Grokster, which settled with Sony for millions of dollars over copyright infringement.

Social Media

Google will begin shutting down the classic Hangouts app in October

Google confirmed that it will begin retiring the classic Google Hangouts app in October. The company will start by pushing users to move to the new Google Hangouts Chat and Hangouts Meet.
Social Media

Spice up your Instagram videos by adding your top tunes to the soundtrack

Have you ever taken a beautiful video, only to have it ruined by some jerk in the background yelling curse words? Here's a list of apps you can use to add your own music to Instagram posts as well as your Story.
Mobile

Learn how to play YouTube in the background on iOS and Android

We show you how to play YouTube in the background with apps such as Opera, Chrome, and Firefox -- along with the premium offerings like YouTube Premium -- whether you have an Android or iOS device.
Home Theater

Block the outside world, tune into your own with the best in-ear headphones

Over-the-ear headphones offer top-flight sound, but they're not so easy to take along with you. If you're looking to upgrade your portable sound, check out our favorite in-ear headphones -- there's a model for every user and every budget.
Movies & TV

The best new movie trailers: ‘Spider-Man,’ ‘John Wick,’ Ghostbusters,’ and more

Everyone loves a good trailer, but keeping up with what's new isn't easy. That's why we round up the best ones for you. This week, it's the first trailers for Spider-Man: Far From Home and John Wick: Chapter 3.
Movies & TV

Best new shows and movies to stream: ‘American Crime Story’ and more

Need something to watch this weekend? Check out our list of the best new shows and movies to stream right now. On the list this week: The Assassination of Gianni Versace, Terry Gilliam's Brazil, and more.
Movies & TV

The show cost how much?! The priciest original series on Netflix

Netflix has spent big bucks on original series, which might be part of the reason why its subscription pricing is going up. Here's a look at some of the priciest series from the streaming service.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (January 2019)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Movies & TV

‘Roma’ and ‘The Favourite’ lead Oscar nominees as ‘Black Panther’ makes history

Roma and The Favourite lead the crowd of 2019 Oscar nominees with 10 nominations each, but Marvel Studios' Black Panther also made history by becoming the first superhero movie to receive an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture.
Home Theater

Here’s what’s new on Hulu and what’s leaving in February 2019

Our complete list of what's new on Hulu for February 2019, our personal favorites, and which titles will be removed will help you catch up on all the site has to offer -- and ensure you don't miss any titles heading into the streaming…
Movies & TV

‘Deadpool 3’ will take series in a ‘different direction,’ Ryan Reynolds says

At the surprise Chinese premiere of Deadpool 2's family-friendly cut, known stateside as Once Upon a Deadpool, Ryan Reynolds claimed that his team needs to "reboot or change" the character before it's too late.
Movies & TV

James Gandolfini’s son cast as young Tony in ‘The Sopranos’ prequel

The Sopranos prequel movie The Many Saints of Newark will star James Gandolfini's son Michael as teenage Tony Soprano, and will follow the future mafioso as he gets tangled up with the mob and race riots in 1960s Newark.
Smart Home

Sing with Freddie Mercury with the ‘Ay-Oh with Bohemian Rhapsody’ Alexa skill

20th Century Fox announced a new Alexa Skill for Freddie Mercury fans. To celebrate the digital release of Bohemian Rhapsody and a National Day of "Ay-Oh," fans can download the Ay-Oh with Bohemian Rhapsody Skill.