Halocene is an American Indie rock band. In early 2019 they made a cover song of Billie Eilish's song "Bad Guy". Halocene say that they did this legally by contacting Eilish first and paying any required royalties.

Then, late this year there was a karaoke reality TV show in Australia called The Masked Singer Australia. In it a cover of "Bad Guy" was also done. Halocene claim that this cover was the same in every aspect as Halocene's earlier cover of the song. Their side by side comparison can be found at Halocene Halocene discuss possible legal action to protect [1] their own cover of "Bad Guy" and [2] their guitarist's original music composition, made a long time ago, that he included in the cover.

Whether Halocene "should" take legal action against the media company that made the show The Masked Singer Australia is another question; the costs would be enormous and the legal jurisdiction [US? Australia? Elsewhere?] would be unclear. The question of at law "does Halocene have a civil case for their own work being used without permission?", is more of my question here.


Probably not

Australia, like many countries including the USA, has a statutory based compulsory licencing and royalty collection and distribution organisation, APRA AMCOS that is a member of a worldwide network CISAC.

The producers/broadcaster will have paid APRA AMCOS for the right to use the song and that will filter back to the US organisation with which the rights holder is registered and ultimately to the composer(s).

Unless and until Halocene register with a US royalty collector, they are not entitled to royalties in Australia.

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