The record industry group claim that the funeral homes have been engaging in unauthorized public broadcasts of copyrighted work and have not paid for proper licensing to play RIAA material at funerals.
The RIAA reportedly received a tip from Lars Ulrich who was informed by a friend that Metallica's "Fade to Black" was being used during some funerals without compensation to the band. The RIAA investigated and found rampant copyright violations at almost every funeral home across the country.
The 666 funeral homes sued on Monday only represent the first wave of targets, this group concentrated in the Bay Area. The RIAA reportedly plans to file new batches of lawsuits on a monthly basis until all violators have been dealt with. - more on this story