Sale of NFT Version of Jay-Z’s Debut Album Stopped by Courts

June 24, 2021, 12:20 PM AEST - 2 months ago

A temporary disposition by New York legal authorities has stopped the attempted sale of an NFT version of US rapper Jay-Z’s first album, Reasonable Doubt.

The NFT auction has been reportedly interrupted after Roc-A-Fella Records filed a complaint against its co-founder Damon Dash.

Record Label Ownership Rights Unclear

The album is owned by Roc-A-Fella Records, established in 1996 by Damon Dash, Jay-Z and Kareem Burke, and released the same year.

Now, according to the record label, Damon Dash was allegedly attempting to auction off an NFT version of the album – alongside its copyright – on an NFT marketplace named SuperFarm, co-founded by crypto YouTube personality EllioTrades.

It’s unclear whether the owners of the NFT marketplace knew about any of the controversy – or even if the alleged auction attempt actually took place. However, according to Roc-A-Fella Records, another listing on a different marketplace has also been attempted.

The claims against Dash include breach of fiduciary duty, unjust enrichment, and conversion. Roc-A-Fella also stated that the album had already been minted as an NFT.

The bottom line is simple: Dash can’t sell what he doesn’t own. By attempting such a sale, Dash has converted a corporate asset and has breached his fiduciary duties.

Statement from Roc-A-Fella Records

The Attempted Sale ‘Never Happened’: Dash

Dash, however, stated that the sale attempt never happened, and that he was only attempting to sell off his personal stake in the company.

There wasn’t an announcement at all. Don’t you think that if I made an announcement that I’m selling Reasonable Doubt you would’ve heard about it? What they’re accusing me of is minting a whole album. So if it’s already minted, it’s already on the blockchain, that means it’s already there. [The sale] never happened, and they know it never happened.

Damon Dash

A court hearing is set for July 1 in which Roc-A-Fella will be claiming “nominal damages, punitive damages, the cost of the lawsuit and attorney fees, and the enjoinment of Dash from selling any interest in the album”.

Jay-Z is not the first rapper to show interest in NFTs – Eminem’s “ShadyCon” was announced earlier this year.

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