Eminem to Donate Proceeds From New Zealand Lawsuit to Hurricane Victims
Eminem will be awarded damages after it was ruled a New Zealand political party breached copyright by using a song similar to "Lose Yourself" in campaign ads, and he plans to put the funds to good use. According to a spokesperson for the rapper, Eminem intends to donate the proceeds from the settled case to hurricane relief efforts to provide aid to those affected by the recent destructive storms.
On Wednesday (Oct. 25), High Court Judge Helen Cull ordered the conservative National Party to pay 500,000 New Zealand dollars ($415,000) plus interest to Eminem's publisher, Eight Mile Style. Since the publisher filed the lawsuit, it's not known how much of the award will go to Eminem.
The National Party used a song called "Eminem Esque" that sounded like a copy of "Lose Yourself" in a television ad that aired 186 times in 2014 as part of a political campaign.
In her ruling, Cull said "Eminem Esque" reproduced the essence of "Lose Yourself." The $415,000 award was based on what the party might have paid in licensing fees, had they actually been granted permission to use the copyrighted original.
The judge has not yet decided who will pay the legal costs, as the National Party purchased "Eminem Esque" from an Australia-based library that had paid a U.S. supplier for its use.
Reporting by Gil Kaufman.