Coachella 2018: Festival being sued over 'radius clause'

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Coachella 2018: Festival being sued over 'radius clause'

Aldrich is also asking the court to throw out radius clause agreements because they're allegedly an unlawful restraint on trade under California law, as well as claims of unfair competition and intentional interference.

Running a music festival is no easy task.

"By means of this clause, Defendants prohibit artists who seek to perform at Coachella from performing at any other festival or themed event within a distance that extends over 1,300 miles, and for a period of almost five months surrounding Coachella", states the complaint.

"By means of this clause, Defendants prohibit artists who seek to perform at Coachella from performing at any other festival or themed event within a distance that extends over 1,300 miles (2,092 km), and for a period of almost five months surrounding Coachella", the lawsuit noted.

The lawsuit names the festival and its associated companies: Goldenvoice, LLC; AEG Presents, LLC; Anschutz Entertainment Group, Inc.; and The Anschutz Corporation. Furthermore, some artists have declined to play at Soul'd Out as they are bound by the clause.

Radius clauses are now the subject of a new lawsuit between the founders of Soul'd Out Music Festival and Coachella. Since the lawsuit began, Coachella has not commented on the issue. "On the other hand, there is an argument that [the radius clause ensures] promotion is something that Coachella can do without worrying about being undercut by a competitor that can free ride on their work".

Lawyers for Harris and Abdulhadi told Billboard that Coachella has a five-month, five-state radius clause that prevents artists on the lineup from playing other festivals. Sure, the music festival industry has become a year-long enterprise, especially with Houston's Day For Night now owning the month of December and events like Okeechobee, Treefort, South By Southwest, and Ultra already in our rearview mirror. That radius covers five states - California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Arizona - which is the entire US West coast, and then some.

The people behind the festival are not staying completely silent, however. "The producers of Coachella will vigorously defend ourselves against this lawsuit, which calls into question the common industry practice employed by promoters and producers throughout the year".

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