Lawyers Get Stupid Over NIN Remix Site

Originally published in Aversion on November 21, 2007

The forces of litigation have managed to defeat creativity once again.

A site that was prepped to showcase fan-submitted remixes of Nine Inch Nails' latest batch of songs has been put on hold after lawyers from the band's last label, Interscope, and Google and MySpace got their position papers in a twist. Long story short, Universal's been strict about Google-owned YouTube and MySpace posting uncleared copies of its artists' music on their servers. To avoid clouding the matter, Universal didn't want to give the impression that it's down with users using uncleared samples in their online creations, and pulled out of the remix project.

"Their premise is that if any fan decides to remix one of my masters with material Universal doesn't own - a "mash-up", a sample, whatever - and upload it to the site, there is no safe harbor under the DMCA (according to Universal) and they will be doing exactly what MySpace and YouTube are doing," Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor said in a statement.

For the time being, the remix site, which is launched to help promote the Year Zero remix album, Y34RZ3R0R3MIX3D,, which arrived in stores yesterday (Nov. 20). The remix album will still contain master audio files for fans to utilize as they see fit, though, for the time being, Nine Inch Nails won't provide a place to show off your production skills.

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