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Mechanical royalty overhaul of the Music Modernization Act reaches House of Representatives

Legislation that proposes a mechanical licensing overhaul has been introduced in the House of Representatives. The Music Modernization Act would create a collective to manage the licenses for the mechanical licensing in all digital uses of music compositions. Under the bipartisan proposal, royalties would be based on free market rates of what willing buyers and sellers would negotiate. Continue Reading

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YouTube and Universal Music Group reach licensing deal; Sony may be next

YouTube has signed a new licensing deal with Universal Music Group. UMG did say that the deal would lead to “growing compensation” for its artists, but neither company has disclosed details. “We’re thrilled to strengthen our partnership with Universal Music Group,” YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said. Continue Reading

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Spotlight on China: How long will Tencent stay in control?

China is in position to be the next center of international music deals, according to a profile in the Financial Times (paywall). The publication cited data from iResearch claiming that China could see its paid online music market grow 59% this year, reaching about 3 billion renminbi ($455 million). Tencent was responsible for 78% of the Chinese market in 2016, and that dominance has allowed the conglomerate to secure licensing and copyright deals with several of the larger western music businesses. Continue Reading

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Music licensing and streaming platform Jamendo launches in the U.S.

Music licensing platform Jamendo is launching in the U.S. The company specializes in serving independent artists, running both a licensing platform for performers and a free streaming service for private, professional use. It has been operating in Europe for more than a decade, and now is officially bringing its two-pronged business model state-side. Continue Reading

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ASCAP and BMI are making a joint database of rights, licensing information

ASCAP and BMI announced a collaboration that will see the two performing rights organizations create a single comprehensive database of musical works from their libraries. The database will contain an overview of shares and rights information for much of the music licensed in the United States, offering more clarity around music ownership. Continue Reading

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Spotify reportedly close to Warner licensing deal

Spotify has reportedly made progress toward securing a licensing deal with Warner Music Group. Reuters cited four unnamed sources in its exclusive report that the streaming company was moving closer to an agreement with the third major label. The specifics of this alleged arrangement are still being hammered out, but the sources told Reuters that the parties had already agreed to Spotify paying a smaller share of revenue to Warner in exchange for the label’s artists to window their work to paid subscribers for a period. Continue Reading