A federal judge on Tuesday temporarily blocked hip-hop producer Damon Dash from selling an NFT of Jay-Z’s classic rap album “Reasonable Doubt.”
Manhattan federal court Judge John Cronan issued a temporary restraining order that prohibits Dash from selling the album as a non-fungible token — a digital art form traded on an online marketplace — after Roc-A-Fella Records sued Dash over his plan last Friday.
“If the plaintiff’s allegations prove true … the plaintiff is likely to suffer irreparable injuries,” Cronan said of the suit, which alleges Dash is attempting to sell what he does not own.
The judge scheduled a subsequent hearing in the case for next Thursday.
In the suit, lawyers for Roc-A-Fella Records allege Dash, Jay-Z and a third man named Kareem Burke each own a one-third stake in the record company — and Dash is not the sole owner of the album’s copyright.
The record company, which shot to the top of the hip-hop industry after the 1996 album sold more than 1 million copies, accused Dash of “frantically scouting” for a venue to sell the album — but alleges he has no right to do so.
“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. His planned auction of Reasonable Doubt would result in irreparable harm,” the suit states.
Dash, 50, told Page Six on Monday that the allegations in the suit are false — and that Jay-Z is trying to “bully” him out of the hugely successful record company.
“I’m not running around to different places trying to auction off ‘Reasonable Doubt.’ I’ve been working with one platform and that’s SuperFarm,” he said.
“That’s what corporate always does to the independent guy. It’s a case of corporate versus independent and how they try to bully me — but they are trying to bully the wrong one,” he added.