Cease and desist. That’s the order that now-defunct alternative rock band R.E.M. sent controversial news network Fox News regarding the use of their music during Fox’s programming.
Former R.E.M. front man Michael Stipe made clear his opinion of the News Corp.-owned cable news network in a terse “cease and desist” order submitted by his publisher. Stipe specifically doesn’t want Fox News to play R.E.M.’s 1991 hit song “Losing My Religion,” one of the band’s best-known songs.
“R.E.M.’s ‘Losing My Religion’ was used in the Fox News coverage of the Democratic National Convention last night,” said an announcement posted to the band’s website. “R.E.M. today, through its music publisher, Warner-Tamerlane Music, demanded that Fox News cease and desist from continuing its unlicensed and unauthorized use of the song”
Michael Stipe added, “We have little or no respect for their puff adder brand of reportage. Our music does not belong there.”
Yikes, right? A Fox News spokesperson later defended the network’s use of R.E.M.’s song before ultimately acquiescing to their request.
“FOX News Channel’s use of an R.E.M. song during Thursday’s edition of Fox & Friends was in full accordance with its license agreements with all appropriate parties. Nevertheless, we’re always flattered to have this much attention for a song selection and we hope R.E.M. was able to satisfy their publicity fix.”
Alright, equally ouch.
R.E.M. broke up last year after a 31-year run, notes The Hollywood Reporter. Do you think that Fox has a right to play “Losing My Religion?”