X Factor 2014 contestants sign away their rights across the universe

Louis Walsh (X Factor 2014)

This year's contract for the X Factor 2014 finalists is tighter than ever.

The so called 'space age contracts' see budding performers sign away their rights across the universe and on media that has yet to be invented.

The Sun reports that production companies Fremantle Ltd and Syco state that a signed contract allows them to use a contestant's contribution “throughout the universe . . . in all media whether now known or hereafter invented”.

Other conditions imposed on the acts includes a forfeit of their copyright on tracks as well as a gagging clause on gossiping about show judges Cheryl Cole, Simon Cowell, Mel B and Louis Walsh.

Hosts Dermot O’Leary and Sarah Jane Crawford, as well as companies Syco and ITV, are also banned from being talked about.

Those that break the contract face the axe from the show, as well as possible court claims for the breach.

A source told The Sun newspaper today: “This is extreme by anyone’s standards. Is it necessary to cover all media — including forms that don’t exist — in the universe?

"Are they likely to get requests from outside Earth?”

Of course the music industry being what it is, such contracts aren't uncommon when signing new acts who seemingly have to give up everything but their firstborn to get a step in the door.

The X Factor 2014 begins next month on ITV.

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