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U.S. Copyright Office rattles cages with profound critique of music licensing

The U.S. Copyright Office released a comprehensive critique of how music licensing works in the U.S. Criticism, by itself, is not noteworth ythese days. The document is exceptional for its detail, pedigree, and disruptive recommendations. The headline recommendation: Broadcast radio should start paying artists. Continue Reading

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Local broadcaster’s geo-fencing lawsuit recommended for dismissal

A Virginia magistrate recommended dismissing the lawsuit filed by VerStandig Broadcasting against SoundExchange. Magistrate Judge Joel Hoppe suggested the dismissal due to a lack of controversy between the two parties, according to Radio World. VerStandig filed a suit against the royalty collector on claims that its use of geo-fencing should exempt it from needing to pay copyright royalties. The broadcaster claimed that it could use this technology to cap streaming content within 150 miles of its transmitter. Continue Reading

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Radio group sues to escape royalty payments, using Copyright Act loophole

A small Virginia radio group, VerStandig Broadcasting, has filed for a declarative judgment in a local district court, seeking to escape payment of performance royalties in its webcasts. The loophole exists in radio’s exemption from paying for the recordings it broadcasts over the air. Continue Reading

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Webcasters take note: U.S. government wants your suggestions to fix music licensing

Music licensing is a mess — few people or companies would disagree. The copyright arm of the U.S. government is thinking about change. As part of the process, the U.S. Copyright Office is initiating a Music Licensing Study, and seeks comments. If the Copyright Act is headed for reform, this is the webcaster’s opportunity to be part of the process. Continue Reading