British prog rock group Pink Floyd have been successful in a case against their record label EMI.
Pink Floyd, the band behind Dark Side of the Moon (among other albums) were unhappy that their label was selling their tracks online as single downloads. Much of their work was concept albums and the band had a clause in their record contract to the effect that they could “preserve the artistic integrity of the albums” i.e. the album was written as a whole and not as a collection of singles and thus should be sold as the same. However the clause did not specifically mention online sales, EMI started sellling individual tracks on iTunes and the band were less then impressed.
Pink Floyd were represented by Robert Howe QC who argued that it would be “a very odd result” if Pink Floyd could control how their music was sold as a physical product but online “there was a free-for-all”. The judge agreed with the band and thus EMI cannot exploit their music by online distribution other than in complete album form unless the band give their consent.