Mercury Radio Arts

A video licensing agency has sued Glenn Beck’s Mercury Radio Arts for copyright infringement.

FNTV, which specializes in breaking news content, accuses Beck’s company of posting on GlennBeck.com and on Beck’s YouTube channel a copyrighted video of protesters destroying restaurants in Rochester without licensing the footage from FNTV, which says it owns the rights to the video.

“Mercury Radio Arts did not license the Video from Plaintiff for its Websites, nor did Mercury Radio Arts have Plaintiff’s permission or consent to publish the Video on its Websites,” states the complaint, filed Feb. 18 in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Texas by Long Island, New York-based attorney Richard Leibowitz. That constitutes copyright infringement under Sections 106 and 501 of the Copyright Act, the suit claims.

FNTV is seeking either actual damages and “profits, gains or advantages of any kind” attributable to the infringement, or statutory damages up to $150,000 per work infringed. It’s also seeking reimbursement of legal costs and wants a jury trial.

Liebowitz has filed hundreds of copyright infringement lawsuits against media companies, including many of radio’s largest operators. In late November 2020, the attorney was suspended from practicing law in the Southern District of New York, his home court, by a court order until a final decision on the charges against him has been made. Charges against the attorney were brought on Aug. 5, 2020 by the U.S. District Court’s Committee on Grievances. Liebowitz has shown “repeated disregard” of orders from the court, the order states, and has shown “unwillingness to change despite 19 formal sanctions and scores of other admonishments and warnings from judges across the country.”

Under a June 26, 2020 court order by Judge Jesse M. Furman of the Southern District of New York, Liebowitz is required to file a copy of Furman’s Order with all pending cases, including the one just lodged against Beck’s Irving, TX-based company. Liebowitz has appealed the order.