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Quick Hits: Sirius XM at the center of royalty questions; UMG backing out of Prince deal

Brief news items and worthy reads from around the web:

Sirius XM in the royalty spotlight: Billboard profiled the unusual role Sirius XM has stepped into ahead of Congress taking on the topic of pre-1972 royalties. The satellite radio company has been an adversary for labels in the past, and that looks unlikely to change despite it reaching settlements for past cases that sought legal protections for music that was recorded prior to the advent of federal copyright laws. The company’s recent investment in Pandora has also deepened its rift with labels, sparking concerns that Sirius will use the new relationship to change Pandora’s direct licensing deals or use it to drive more subscriptions to its own platform.

Judge nullifies UMG’s Prince deal: Universal Music Group has been granted legal approval from Judge Kevin Eide to move forward in nullifying its deal for a portion of Prince’s catalog. The label argued that its $31 million deal with Prince’s estate misrepresented the assets covered by the agreement, so that UMG thought it was securing rights to a portion of the artist’s music that is actually still under contract for Warner Music Group. The good news for fans: despite the legal back and forth, Prince’s music appears to still be available for streaming.

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Anna Washenko

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