Washington, D.C. (January 13, 2004)–The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) announced today a $200,000 settlement of claims involving the unauthorized pressing of vinyl by United Record Pressing LLC that allegedly infringed copyrights owned by RIAA members.
“We are pleased to have reached a settlement with United Record Pressing,” said Cary Sherman, president of the RIAA. “This settlement should serve as a clear notice that the music community is serious about piracy in all music formats and in all types of media. Vinyl manufacturers, no less than other entities such as CD plants or online sites, must take steps to ensure that the proper licenses have been obtained for all their customers’ products.”
RIAA’s anti-piracy investigators sent a demand letter to United Record Pressing LLC in April 2002 after learning that the company was fulfilling customer orders by manufacturing and using more than 35 illegal “stampers”–the metal parts used to press the actual vinyl albums. Each individual “stamper” is capable of pressing thousands of copies of a particular album and collectively they contained more than 170 unauthorized sound recordings, including songs by artists such as Barry White, Ricky Martin, Mary J. Blige and Earth, Wind & Fire.
The RIAA credited United Record Pressing, a Nashville, Tennessee firm, for working earnestly and diligently to address the RIAA’s allegations of copyright infringement. United Record Pressing has taken proactive steps to improve its procedures, including becoming the only vinyl plant to be certified through the International Recording Media Association’s (IRMA) Anti-Piracy Compliance Program. The RIAA hopes that other vinyl plants will take note of this settlement and follow United Record Pressing’s lead by enacting their own anti-piracy control measures.
“We look forward to working with United Record Pressing in the future,” added Sherman.