The National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) is seeking more than $250m (£197.7m) in compensation from Twitter, the BBC reports.
In a lawsuit filed in federal district court in Nashville, the NMPA claims Twitter “authorized and encouraged infringement” for profit.
The NMPA, which represents companies – including Sony Music Publishing, BMG Rights Management and Universal Music Publishing Group – alleges that Twitter continues to “reap enormous profits from the availability of unlicensed music without paying the required licensing fees for it”.
The infringements have given Twitter an “unfair advantage” over competitors – including TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat – that pay for music licenses.
“Twitter “is the only major social media platform that has completely refused to license the millions of songs on its service.”,
NMPA president David Israelite said in a statement.
“Twitter’s change of ownership in October 2022 has not led to any improvements in the way it operates in terms of copyright. On the contrary, Twitter’s internal affairs with respect to the issues involved in this lawsuit are in disarray”
NMPA further stated.
Since buying Twitter, Mr Musk has laid off 75% of staff, including the teams tasked with tracking abuse, and changed the way the company verifies accounts.