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Congress introduces legislation for pre-1972 royalties; music industry parties react

Congress is preparing to address the topic of royalties for pre-1972 recordings, a move that sparked positive response from several music industry players. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) introduced the CLASSICS Act to establish royalty payments for the creators of music recorded prior to the advent of federal copyright laws in 1972. Representatives from SoundExchange, the RIAA, and Pandora have all reacted favorably toward this proposal. Continue Reading

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Mechanical royalties debate sparked once again for Spotify

Songwriter and publisher royalties have appeared once again as a sticking point for the Spotify streaming service. The New York Post’s Claire Atkinson is reporting that music publishers and songwriters are looking to receive a portion of Spotify’s equity when the company either goes public or finds an interested buyer. According to her sources, the National Music Publishers Association has been deeply interested in the question of equity since Spotify has been more seriously preparing for a direct listing on the New York Stock Exchange. Continue Reading

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Report: DMCA could be allowing up to $1 billion in royalty underpayments

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act has been a lightning rod for criticism from the music industry. There have been many calls to update the act, which took effect in 1999, to reflect the changes that have happened in the music industry over the past two decades. The most recent ammunition in the arsenal for those activists is an academic report from the Phoenix Center. Continue Reading

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Copyright Royalty Board: Songwriter hearing for interactive stream rates begins

This week, songwriters, composers, and publishers will begin lobbying the Copyright Royalty Board for larger royalty fees from streaming services. The hearing for songwriters and their professional organizations is set to start today. The CRB will be reviewing proposals from several parties as it works to determine the royalty rates paid for interactive streams over the 2018-2022 period. Continue Reading

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Music Reports to administer pre-1972 license for Sirius XM

The latest development in the unfolding legal story between Sirius XM and Flo & Eddie is about the background paperwork. Music Reports has been chosen as the royalty administrator for a ten-year license for the satellite radio company’s use of Flo & Eddie’s recording catalog and other recordings from prior to 1972. Continue Reading

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SoundExchange will continue administering webcast royalties for Pandora’s free radio service

Pandora has been re-thinking its licensing, inking direct deals with labels and publishers over the past two years. Despite those changes to the audio company’s licensing structures, SoundExchange will still be managing Pandora’s payouts to artists from the free tier. Continue Reading

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France’s Sacem partners with IBM for online royalty system

Sacem, France’s collection society for songwriters and composers, announced a collaboration with IBM to create a new online royalty system. The project is called URights and will be built on the IBM Cloud. It could improve the ability to track online music usage and rights payments, as well as offering data analytics and local customizations. Continue Reading