The Summer of Copyright Part 4: DoJ Reviews ASCAP & BMI Consent Decrees

Broadcast law attorney David Oxenford writes about the Department of Justice review of ‘consent decress,’ which govern how ASCAP and BMI operate. “All music services need to watch and stay involved as this process develops,” Oxenford advises. “There are obviously important and complicated issues that will be considered in this review.” Continue Reading


BMI and ASCAP speak out in favor of revised consent decrees; NAB disagrees

BMI submitted a statement to the Department of Justice earlier this week with its proposed changes to the consent decree rules that govern collective licensing. The group’s main argument was that music publishers should be allowed to chose which rights they negotiate through the performing rights organizations. ASCAP echoed BMI’s sentiments in its own filing on Thursday. Continue Reading


Sony puts entire catalog online, positioning for licensing independence

Sony/ATV/EMI announced that its complete catalog of songs is now visible on its website. “As the world’s leading music publisher we want to ensure that existing users, prospective licensees and those with a need to access our extensive song list are provided with that capability,” said Martin Bandier, the company’s chairman. Continue Reading


Sony threatens to split from licensing collective to secure digital rights

The simmering legal battle for collective licensing took a new turn last week. Martin Bandier, chairman of Sony/ATV/EMI, said that his company would consider withdrawing from the U.S. collective licensing system unless the Department of Justice overhauls the current regulations for song performance rights. Continue Reading


U.S. government announces review of music licensing system

In 1941, the U.S. Justice Department set up a music licensing system that still governs publishers, composers, and songwriters. Today, the Justice Department announced its intention to review the 73-year-old laws and consider changing them. At stake — how publishers negotiate royalty payments, how much money music creators earn, and costs to streaming music services. Continue Reading