Electronic music band, Kraftwerk, have been hit with a blow after GermanyÂs constitutional court has ruled that they could not use copyright protection to prevent another music artist from sampling a two-second clip from one of their songs.
Previously it had been held by the Federal Court of Justice that the producer, Moses Pelham, had infringed the copyright on the bandÂs song ÂMetall auf MetallÂ by using a two second beat sequence repeatedly in the song ÂNur MirÂ, sung by the rapper Sabrina Setlur.
The decision was overturned, however, with the court stating that as the clip was only seconds long, its use Âled to the creation of a totally new and independent piece of workÂ. The court also held that the sampling had not diminished the economic value of the original sound.
Sampling has become a major issue over recent years which a number of high profile artists hit with claims that parts of global hits were taken from other artistÂs works. The most well-known case of late involved Robin Thicke and Pharrell WilliamÂs use of a sample from the Marvin Gaye song ÂGot to Give it UpÂ in their smash hit, ÂBlurred LinesÂ. This led to a huge pay-out of damages to GayeÂs estate for copyright infringement. There are other cases in the pipeline including one involving an accusation made against Justin Bieber and his song ÂSorryÂ.
It will be interesting to see how these cases develop to establish whether a pattern emerges in relation to the favouring of the accused usually a well-known star or the effected, a relatively unknown entity.