Soundgarden Regain Control of Band Social Media Accounts
The latest development in the ongoing lawsuit between Chris Cornell’s widow, Vicky, and the surviving members of Soundgarden sees the band regain control of their official website and social media accounts, from which they’d been completely locked out since late 2019.
The band announced the news from their newly recaptured social media accounts, saying:
“Soundgarden and Vicky Cornell, the personal representative of the estate of Christopher Cornell, are pleased to announce that, effective June 15, 2021, they have come to temporary agreement that will transfer the Soundgarden social media accounts and website to the band’s remaining members, Kim Thayil, Matt Cameron, and Ben Shepherd and their managers, Red Light Management.
“This includes Soundgarden’s website [www.soundgardenworld.com], Facebook [facebook.com/Soundgarden], Instagram [instagram.com/soundgarden], and Twitter [twitter.com/soundgarden]. The agreement marks a productive first step towards healing and open dialogue, and the parties wish for the social media accounts to celebrate the band’s accomplishments and music, while continuing to honor Chris’ legacy.”
It is not currently clear what the meaning of “temporary” is in this context.
In a separate post, the band laid out guidelines for their social media accounts going forward, asking fans to leave personal attacks against band members (current or former) and their families off the pages, and threatening comment deletion for those who disobey as well as permanent banishment for repeat offenders:
“Hey Soundgarden friends, fans and family!
“Our site is intended to celebrate the music, achievements, career and legacy of the band along with news and information about any current and future plans, including relevant solo work. We encourage our fans to share their comments, praise and criticism, but we do expect these to be appropriate, courteous and respectful to each other and to the band. We are super stoked to have our socials return to discussions and posts about being in a f***ing great ROCK BAND!! Remember the guitars, drums, vocals and volume?!!! No more comments about wives, children, exes, significant others, siblings, parents, great aunts, 2nd cousins… etc. of any of the current or former band members… get it?!! It should go without saying, to the adults in the room, that there won’t be any threats, bullying or mocking of any kind, directed at anyone. Furthermore, don’t post discussions or inane conspiracy theories casting blame for harm to Chris Cornell. If anybody’s comments are inappropriate in these ways, they will be removed. If anybody’s comments are threatening, bullying or abusive, OR if we have to remove more than one of anybody’s comments, they will lose the opportunity to continue commenting on our site. We admire the character and caliber of all the fans who’ve supported and grown with us over the years, geez…decades!!
“Keep us proud! Peace and love to our brothers and sisters!!
Vicky and surviving members Kim Thayil (guitar), Ben Shepherd (bass), and Matt Cameron (drums), have been at odds since at least 2019, when Thayil alleged that Cornell’s vocal tracks for the final Soundgarden album were being withheld. Several months later, Vicky sued the band, alleging that they’ve been withholding the late singer’s royalties in an “unlawful attempt to strong-arm Chris’ Estate into turning over certain audio recordings created by Chris before he passed away.”
The band subsequently countersued, arguing that Cornell wasn’t the sole author of the recordings, and that they should therefore be returned to the band; that they learned about Cornell’s death from Facebook; and that Vicky used revenue from a Chris Cornell charity tribute concert for “personal purposes.” That final part of the countersuit was later dropped.
In February, Vicky filed a new complaint against the band, alleging the trio attempted to buy out her share of Soundgarden with an insultingly low offer of $300,000 — which she says is less than she made from Soundgarden-related royalties in 2018. The band denied the allegations.
In March, U.S. District Judge Michelle Peterson found a lack of evidence to prove Vicky’s claim that the band and their business manager have “shamefully conspired to wrongfully withhold… hundreds of thousands of dollars” in royalties from the Cornell estate. Consequently, Peterson recommended that two of Cornell’s six legal claims against the band be dismissed entirely. The case’s presiding judge, Robert S. Lasnik, was expected to make a final decision on the matter shortly.