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Scott Beale / AP

Wixen Music Publishing, which manages songs by Tom Petty, Stevie Nicks and more, is suing Spotify for $1.6 billion for allegedly using thousands of songs without proper licensing, Variety reports. It's also seeking injunctive relief for damages.

Why it matters: Spotify has been hit with numerous complaints and lawsuits from the music industry in the past for not giving music creators a fair share of revenue, and for distributing music without proper licenses. This suit is one of the biggest, and it's happening as Spotify prepares to go public through a direct listing in the near future.

The lawsuit was filed just before the new year at a federal court in California. Wixen says Spotify didn't adequately compensate the music label or its artists and knowingly distributed its clients' music without the proper licenses. Spotify responded by filing court papers Friday that questioned whether Wixen's clients authorized the record label to include their names in a suit against Spotify without giving them enough opt-out time.

Go deeper: Copyright problems have more commonly plagued video streaming companies like YouTube. YouTube and its rival Facebook have been doubling down on music streaming deals with record labels over the past year. Still, more music is being streamed from audio services than video.

Go deeper

24 mins ago - Health

FDA advisory panel endorses Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccine for emergency use

Photo: Illustration by Cezary Kowalski/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Friday recommended the authorization of Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot coronavirus vaccine for emergency use.

Why it matters: The FDA is expected to make a final decision within days on the J&J vaccine, which was found to be 66% effective against moderate to severe COVID. An emergency use authorization would allow distribution to immediately begin, helping streamline and speed up the vaccine rollout across the U.S.

Dave Lawler, author of World
26 mins ago - World

Schiff: "Definitive" Khashoggi report sends clear message to Saudis

Photo: Leon Neal/Getty Images

The report released Friday on the murder of Jamal Khashoggi was short on evidence or new information, but Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) tells Axios that the “definitive” statement assigning responsibility to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) speaks volumes.

What he’s saying: Schiff, the chairman of the House intelligence committee, says that while some intelligence couldn’t be published because of the need to protect sources and methods, “we rarely see something published that is this definitive and I think that's an important accomplishment for the administration.”

Exclusive: Law enforcement organizations back Biden pick for assistant AG

Vanita Gupta Photo: Demetrius Freeman/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Local and federal law enforcement officials are backing Vanita Gupta, President Biden’s nominee for associate attorney general, according to letters sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee and obtained by Axios.

Why it matters: The Major County Sheriffs of America noted Gupta “emphasized that she does not support efforts to ‘defund the police'” and highlighted her desire to improve criminal justice through methods that include increased training for law enforcement officials.