Sony Music Entertainment is suing OFRA Cosmetics for alleged copyright infringement on platforms including Twitter/X and TikTok. Photo Credit: Chalo Garcia
Sony Music Entertainment (SME) is officially suing makeup and skincare brand OFRA Cosmetics for allegedly infringing upon protected music in north of 300 social media videos.
The Big Three label only recently filed the complaint against Pompano Beach-headquartered OFRA Cosmetics, submitting the action to a Florida federal court. According to DMN’s exclusive copy of the straightforward suit, 25-year-old OFRA used Sony Music recordings (and underlying compositions) without permission in a minimum of 329 videos.
And at least as described by SME, these promotional clips plugged various OFRA products across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter/X, and TikTok alike. As made clear in prior cases, social platforms’ major label blanket licenses cover individuals’ song usages but not those of brands. Notably, as part of a bolstered TikTok tie-up finalized earlier this year, Warner Music licensed its catalog for the platform’s commercial library.
OFRA created and released “many” of the allegedly infringing videos at hand, per Sony Music, whereas others were allegedly made by influencers and then reposted to the makeup manufacturer’s main page.
Because the quarter-century-old cosmetics company “actively reviewed, selected, copied, re-posted, and shared infringing content created by its influencers,” though, it “knew or should have known of the influencers’ infringement,” according to the suit.
In any event, among the allegedly infringed works are releases from Doja Cat, Harry Styles, Usher, and more, Sony Music maintained in the action, reiterating for good measure that it hadn’t authorized OFRA to sync the tracks.
Besides allegedly depriving SME of licensing revenue, the alleged infringement has rendered it increasingly difficult for the label’s artists to ink sponsorship deals with different cosmetics companies owing to their perceived affiliation with OFRA, per the text.
September of 2022 purportedly saw Sony Music deliver a cease-and-desist letter to OFRA, but predictably, given the present complaint, the message failed to stop the alleged infringement. According to Sony Music, the beauty company continued posting infringing social videos into late September of this year.
Of course, the alleged infringement wasn’t limited to Sony Music’s repertoire, the text acknowledges. But Warner Music and Universal Music aren’t parties to the suit and didn’t appear to have submitted separate actions at the time of this writing.
SME has specifically accused the defendant of direct and contributory copyright infringement and is seeking (among other things) any profits deriving from the alleged unauthorized usages or, alternatively, millions in statutory damages.
Last year, each of the major labels sued Bang Energy for alleged infringement in commercial videos posted to social platforms including TikTok. On the heels of partial victories for Universal Music and Sony Music, Bang’s parent declared bankruptcy in October of 2022. Monster Beverage (NASDAQ: MNST) then scooped up the business for approximately $362 million this past summer.