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She was sued by singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman, who claimed that Minaj committed copyright infringement by interpolating her song “Baby Can I Hold You” in 2018’s “Sorry” with Nas.
Minaj has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, claiming that the interpolation fell within fair use rights and that she had reportedly attempted to obtain Chapman’s permission numerous times.
The judge sided with Nicki, explaining her belief that artists should be allowed to “experiment” with existing copyrighted material and that the implications of setting a more restrictive precedent would prove detrimental to the industry at large.
“Artists usually experiment with works before seeking licenses from rights holders and rights holders typically ask to see a proposed work before approving a license,” she declared. “A ruling uprooting these common practices would limit creativity and stifle innovation within the music industry.”
Nicki’s lawyers had long warned that if the court found in favour of Chapman, it “would impose a financial and administrative burden so early in the creative process that all but the most well-funded creators would be forced to abandon their visions at the outset.”
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