Why Is Eminem Suing New Zealand's National Party?


Politicians may want to refrain from using Eminem music in their campaigns.

No, not because the Detroit-based rapper is known for his rapid-fire, profanity-laced rhymes, but because his legal team may come after you for copyright infringement.

Em's music publishers Eight Mile Style and Martin Affiliated have filed a lawsuit against New Zealand's National Party, claiming that the party breached copyright laws when it used "Lose Yourself" in campaign ads.

"It is both disappointing and sadly ironic that the political party responsible for championing the rights of music publishers in New Zealand … should itself have so little regard for copyright," Martin said in a statement to the Associated Press. "We do not hesitate to take immediate action to protect the integrity of Eminem's works."

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The National Party, meanwhile, claims that it used music originally published by L.A.'s Spider Cues Music and that it purchased the rights via an Australian-based supplier.

"The National Party completely rejects the allegation that the library music used in its early campaign advertisements is a copyright infringement of any artist's work," it said in a statement to the AP, noting that it had stopped using the music two weeks ago. "This has not satisfied the complainant," it added.

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This is hardly the first time that Slim Shady's music has sparked legal action. Martin said that the publishers had previously sued Apple for using Em's music without permission, while they have also disputed with Audi over "Lose Yourself."

What do you think: is the ad's riff ripped from "Lose Yourself," or is it a case of mistaken musical identity?