Another day, another hard-earned victory for the remaining members of the Beastie Boys, who today won a lawsuit against Monster Energy for using the band’s songs in a commercial without their permission. Monster is now responsible for paying $668,000 of the Beasties’ legal bills, reports AP Online.
U.S. District Judge Paul Engelmayer wrote in a ruling Monday that his review of the band’s legal bills suggests that the “Beastie Boys opted to pay for, and received, the ‘Cadillac Escalade,’ not the ‘Honda Civic’” of legal representation.
The judge said Beastie Boys’ band members Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz and Michael “Mike D” Diamond approached the case “with special zeal,” testifying that as a matter of principle they have not licensed their music for product advertisements and would have turned down Monster if it had asked for permission.
Lawyers for Monster and the Beastie Boys did not immediately return messages seeking comment Tuesday.
As we reported previously, it’s not the first time the band has made recent headlines for seeking legal action against unauthorized commercial use of their jams: they also pursued a case against the toymaker GoldieBlox (which has since settled out of court) for using the song ‘Girls’ to help peddle their engineering-for-girls wares.
In an era where many creative types—artists, musicians, writers—are financially steamrolled by the herd mentality of, “If it’s out there, it’s mine to take whether or not I pay for it,” whether it’s downloading pirated music or taking a cue from Monster’s playbook (which I doubt any smart business will do anytime soon, at not least with the Beastie Boys), it’s inspiring to see a band put its foot down and hopefully create a trajectory for other industry folks to follow.
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