Sing Along: Karaoke Night With 14 Songs Costs Tucson Restaurant... $49,000 In BMI Fees
from the sing-along,-everyone dept
"We answered the complaint, but they (BMI) wanted us to do ridiculous stuff. Our attorney said to take it to court and see where it goes."also doesn't make much sense. If their attorney said to take it to court, they (perhaps... just a suggestion) should have showed up in court. They now claim they'll appeal, but not showing up for the original case was a huge mistake. Separately, they claim that the karaoke night was run by a third party contractor that was "properly licensed" with BMI and ASCAP, but I'm pretty sure that is incorrect. If I remember correctly, it's the venue that needs the license, not anyone doing the entertaining.
That said, there's still plenty of ridiculousness to go around on the BMI side. BMI has been bullying anyone hosting karaoke nights for a while now, so it's got the process down. However, $49,000 for 14 songs seems ridiculous -- and anyone with any sense of reality would admit that. Not BMI. It's spokesperson, Jerry Bailey indicated to the reporter covering the story that the restaurant was lucky BMI didn't push for $30,000 per song, since it could ask for that much.
And, of course, BMI could admit that the $49,000 for 14 songs is ridiculous and agree to let the restaurant pay a smaller, but reasonable sum, and move on, but it's not doing that either. Instead, Bailey highlights how its shakedown specialists are good at collecting on these judgments:
"It's definitely about the money as well as the judgment," Bailey said. "We will take appropriate steps to secure the judgment. This is not new to us. We are experienced in this area. Our attorneys know what to do."Yes, the shakedown business is a good one, and BMI has lots of experience in it.