How long is too long to wait to sue for plagiarism?
One Australian singer-songwriter is hoping that 30 years isn't too long.
Seems Allan Caswell has a beef with the band Alabama and a very popular song of theirs. According to his lawsuit, back in the early 80s he wrote a song for an Australia soap opera called The Prisoner. Then just a few years ago, Caswell recognized the melody in Alabama's 1982 Christmas song Christmas in Dixie.
I guess maybe Alabama wasn't as big in Aussie land as they are/were here, eh?
When you watch the video above, you can definitely hear a similarity, but here's the kicker, Mr. Caswell isn't suing the Alabama, he's suing his own publisher, Sony ATV Music Publishing Australia, for not collecting royalties all these years.
Now here's another twist, Alabama is signed to another division of Sony Music, which means that if Sony were to sue, they'd be suing themselves. Since Sony can't sue themselves, Caswell is taking Sony to court for failing to collect royalties for the last 30 years.
In the end it does seem he has a case. According to papers, back in 2004, Sony had an expert examine both songs who determined that the songs, "shared a level of similarity that went beyond what he would consider to be a random occurrence of sheer coincidence."
So it seems this will probably never see the inside of a courtroom since it seems kind of open and shut, but it's definitely an interesting story.
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