Hunan TV Show Accused of Illegally Airing Queen Songs

Sony/ATV Music Publishing said performers on the hit Chinese music show ‘Singer’ didn’t have the rights to sing songs by the British band.

An American music publishing company has accused one of China’s biggest state-owned television networks of illegally using songs under its ownership, according to a statement published Saturday.

Sony/ATV Music Publishing said that singers of a Hunan TV reality show didn’t request permission to perform songs from the British band Queen. Four singers on Friday had performed a medley of four songs by Queen — including “We Are the Champions” and “Bohemian Rhapsody” — during an episode of its hit show “Singer,” a musical faceoff between the established Chinese artists.

The New York-based company, which manages the copyrights for songs by Queen, also urged the Chinese network to “respect and protect” the rights of the artists and demanded compensation for the copyright infringement.

Sixth Tone’s repeated phone calls to Hunan TV went unanswered Monday, while Sony/ATV told Sixth Tone that it could not comment further amid an ongoing discussion with the network.

Musical reality shows have become an entertainment staple in China, drawing billions of viewers on television networks and online platforms. Such shows usually secure the rights to the songs their contestants perform, but some copyright holders have alleged that this isn’t always the case. Continue to read the full article here.


– This article originally appeared on Sixth Tone.