Eric Clapton has made a move towards being a giant asshole in recent years. Maybe he was pushed over the edge by Covid, speculation, but the latest move is really a WTF, bro…
Earlier this week, Clapton successfully sued a 55-year-old German woman for posting a bootleg live CD on eBay for $11… the woman, who is referred to in the court docs as “Gabriele P.” would also have to pay court costs for both herself and the guitarist, totaling some $4,000.
Well… now, thanks to an avalanche of bad press, Clapton is trying everything he can to distance himself from the situation.
His legal team team has issued a statement, hoping to explain away the proceedings and clear up why Clapton’s name was part of a lawsuit.
I don’t buy any of it, but here is what it said:
“Widespread and often misleading press reports” regarding the case, the German woman (defendant) is “not the type of person Eric Clapton, or his record company, wish to target.”
It continues, “Over the past decade a number of well-known recording companies and artists, including Clapton, have engaged German lawyers to pursue thousands of bootleg cases flouting the country’s copyright laws.
“It is not the intention to target individuals selling isolated CDs from their own collection, but rather the active bootleggers manufacturing unauthorized copies for sale. In the case of an individual selling unauthorized items from a personal collection, if following receipt of a ‘cease and desist’ letter the offending items are withdrawn, any costs would be minimal, or might be waived.”
Clapton’s team is saying that it was them—“rather than Eric personally”—who sought damages. Further, Clapton is “not involved in any individual cases, and 95% of the cases are resolved before going to court.”
It also reads: “This case could have been disposed of quickly at minimal cost, but unfortunately in response to the German lawyers’ first standard letter, the individual’s reply included the line (translation): ‘Feel free to file a lawsuit if you insist on the demands’. This triggered the next step in the standard legal procedures, and the court then made the initial injunction order.
“If the individual had complied with the initial letter the costs would have been minimal. Had she explained at the outset the full facts in a simple phone call or letter to the lawyers, any claim might have been waived, and costs avoided.”
The statement also says that the defendant “appointed a lawyer who appealed the injunction decision”, and that “the judge encouraged the individual to withdraw the appeal to save costs, but she proceeded”.
So, got it, it isn’t her fault… but it is totally her fault.
And Eric doesn’t really care, but his team cares. Because you know… lawyers just act at their own whim and do not talk to their clients.