Grammy-winning hip-hop artist, Kanye West, who is well known for his outrageous statements, and his famous song “Gold Digger,” is under fire for alleged copyright infringement.

Trena Steward and Lorenzo Pryor, who own a percentage of the Thunder & Lightning song “Bumpin’ Bus Stop,” allege that West stole from them by engaging “in the repeated willful infringement of Plaintiffs’ copyrighted music on a massive scale by sampling Plaintiffs’ copyrighted music.”  They specifically claim that West took the vocal performance of the lyrics from “Bumpin’ Bus Stop” and used it in his famous song, “Gold Digger.”  The lyrics of concern are, “Get Down,” “Step Up,” “It’s the Hottest Thing” and “Step Up Front.”

According to Yahoo, plaintiffs demand a jury trial and seek $150,000 per infringement.

What Is Copyright Infringement?

Intellectual property refers to one of a kind creations and products of the human mind that include ideas, brands, logos, inventions, patents, trademarks and copyrights.  A copyright is a form of protection provided to the authors of original works of authorship including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works, both published and unpublished. Copyright infringement occurs when someone copies or illegally uses copyrighted information without the owners consent.

If you are involved with any issues pertaining to intellectual property, you should consult with a qualified intellectual property lawyer.  If you need help with the application or registration of your intellectual property, an intellectual property lawyer may help file your intellectual property application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.  For more information, contact an intellectual property attorney near you.

Do you hear where the song was sampled?  I personally do not.  Do you think plaintiff's have a valid copyright infringement claim against West?