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Nonini threatens to sue influencer Brian Mutinda, electronics company over copyright infringement

By Kevin Koech, K24 Digital On Thu, 28 Jul, 2022 14:24 | 3 mins read

Musician Hubert Nakitare, alias Nonini has threatened to sue brand influencer Brian Mutinda and electronics company, Synix for using his song without permission.

The company featured Mutinda on an advert for one of their products, and used Nonini’s song, We Kamu.

Nonini threatens to take legal action

In a letter addressed to Synix, the veteran musician threatened to take legal action against them over copyright infringement.

Nonini argued that the influencer and the company used his song for their own financial and capitalistic gain respectively.

“In this case, the influencer under the engagement of Syinix Electronics used our client’s copyrights for his own financial gain and for Syinix Electronics’ capitalistic gain without permission of our client hence amounting to copyright infringement,” the letter read in part.

The musician noted that the company should have reached out to him before producing the advertisement.

“A synchronization license is required no matter how small a portion of the song you use especially for commercial purposes. If a song is synced on a video you will need to pay the composer of the song no matter how small the portion of the composition is used,” he said.

Nonini relocated to the US where he runs a successful business PHOTO/@noninimgengetrue/Instagram

Issue an apology

As such, Nonino has demanded a public apology from the influencer and the electronics company within seven days.

He also directed that the video be pulled down feom their respective social media platforms failure to which legal action will be taken.

“Should you choose to ignore this demand, we have mandatory unequivocal instruction from our client to institute legal proceedings against both of you in a court of law,” the letter further read.

Nonini advised musicians to be keen on matters involving copyrights.

“Music rightsholders know how to defend their rights, and not having a sync license puts your company at risk. The music industry earns its revenue from copyrights and so music rights holders please take legal action against any form of infringement,” he stated.

Brand influencer Brian Mutinda PHOTO/@brian.mutinda/Instagram

Sauti Sol vs Azimio

This comes two months after boy band Sauti Sol accused Azimio la Umoja – One Kenya Alliance of copyright infringement after the political outfit used their hit song Extravaganza in their campaign materials.

The band said they had not authorised former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Azimio to use the track, which was used to announce Martha Karua as his running mate

“We did not license this song to the Azimio la Umoja campaign neither did we give any consent for its use in the announcement of their Vice-Presidential candidate. Furthermore, our authority to use the composition, which is one of our most distinct compositions was neither sought nor given

“This is blatant copyright infringement as directed by Section 35 CAP 170 of the Copyright Act of Kenya,” Sauti Sol said.

The band, which promised to seek legal remedy against Azimio, termed the action as a flagrant disregard of their basic and fundamental rights to property and freedom of association.

Sauti Sol in action at the Sol Fest event. PHOTO/COURTESY

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