Nearly two weeks ago Ozzy Osbourne's representatives urged fans to boycott a pay-per-view show of Ozzfest 2000 that was scheduled to air on Nov. 10 on iNDemand TV. On Friday, Nov. 17, the bombastic singer decided to be more proactive and filed a $20 million suit in U.S. District Court in California against MCY.com, the company contracted to record the show for webcast purposes, as well as iNDemand and DIRECTV. Osbourne, who is joined by Godsmack
, Stactic-X, Methods of Mayhem
, Kittie, Pantera
, Slaves on Dope and Soulfly in the suit, contends that the New York-based MCY, which has staged high-profile Webcasts such as the Backstreet Boys
, Pete Townshend's "Lifehouse" show, Paul McCartney's
Cavern show and Puff Daddy
and the Family's European tour, only had the rights to broadcast on the Internet, and were not given permission to sell the footage for TV.
According to Osbourne's rep, no one in his office, nor any of the bands were notified by MCY about the Nov. 10 airing. "How Ozzy found out was that some of the bands began calling the management office, after they saw promos for the show on TV," a Osbourne spokesperson said.
The lawsuit is for copyright infringement, trademark dilution and infringement, unlawful appropriation of names and likenesses, irreparable damage to reputation, and violation of the bands' artistic vision and creative control over the tour.
Also joining in the suit is Jack Osbourne, Ozzy's fifteen-year-old son, who claims his image was misappropriated and included in the unsanctioned broadcast. According to a statement issued by Osbourne's reps, the bands in the pay-per-view special were outraged over the inferior quality of the footage, and none of them had granted rights for their performances to be used, nor were they compensated.
MCY contends that none of that is true, and MCY's Nancy Bushkin issued the following statement: "MCY's contract with the Osbourne Management and our rights to both the webcast and broadcast are clear and unambiguous," adding, "MCY paid Osbourne Management for the pay-per-view rights to Ozzfest 2000, and Osbourne Management will continue to share in the proceeds of the pay-per-view."
Written by JAAN UHELSZKI for RollingStone.com News