Several copyright holders are joining a class action infringement suit against YouTube, including the National Music Publishers' Assn., investigative journalist Robert Tur and the U.K.'s Rugby Football League.

Following a suit filed by Viacom against YouTube in March for copyright infringement, independent music publisher Bourne Co. and the Football Assn. Premier League in May filed a class action lawsuit for infringement against YouTube and its parent company, Google. The class action complaint, filed in federal court in New York, seeks to stop the services from the "unauthorized and uncompensated use" of the creative and other copyrighted works of the league and publisher, as well as the works of other copyright holders that would qualify as part of the class action suit.

"NMPA is very concerned about YouTube's approach to copyright," says NMPA president/CEO David Israelite. "We are joining the lawsuit to protect the interests of music publishers and songwriters, whose creative works are being used without permission or compensation by YouTube."

Several additional parties have either joined or are joining the suit, including Cherry Lane Music Publishing, the Finnish Football League Assn., X-Ray Dog Music, Knockout Entertainment, Seminole Warriors Boxing, and author Daniel Quinn.

"We have concluded historic licensing agreements with several NMPA members and have been in licensing discussions with others," says Michael Kwun, Google's managing litigation counsel. "Many songwriters and music publishers view YouTube as a promising promotional platform for connecting with their fans and as a unique revenue opportunity. We are surprised and disappointed that the NMPA has elected to take this route."

The judge in the case has appointed the law firms Proskauer Rose as well as Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossman as interim class counsel until the parties have been formally certified as a class to prosecute the case.