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The Music Modernization Act signed into law, ending a chapter in licensing overhaul

The Music Modernization Act has been signed into law, ending a long battle to overhaul mechanical licensing and rights for both publishers and songwriters at the federal level. The law, as compromised between the Senate and the House of Representatives, has the same three central components as it did while progressing through Congress. Continue Reading

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Spotify fails in effort to throw out Bluewater mechanical licensing lawsuit

Spotify is facing down another legal case, with a lawsuit filed in July 2017 moving forward in courts. Bluewater Music Services Corporation filed claims of copyright infringement by the streaming platform, listing nearly 2,400 songs where it said Spotify had not acquired the proper licenses. Continue Reading

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Music Modernization Act for mechanical licensing overhaul leaps major hurdle with unanimous Senate approval

The Music Modernization Act has passed by unanimous consent in the Senate, an approval that marks a huge step forward towards overhauling mechanical licensing in the United States. The legislation took a risky path of hotlining, where unanimous support is required for approval. Continue Reading

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Music Modernization Act could face a risky final Senate vote today

The Music Modernization Act, a sweeping overhaul of mechanical copyright laws, could face its final hurdle in the Senate today. Billboard has cited sources who claim the legislation could be hotlined for the Senate this afternoon. Hotlining is a process for proposed laws that are expected to be passed unanimously by a verbal vote. Continue Reading

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Industry support for Music Modernization Act could fray as amendments enter debate

The Music Modernization Act, a move to overhaul several federal laws for music licensing, has been making slow and steady progress through Congressional committees. Now, some proposed changes have fractured the near-universal support the Act initially commanded from songwriters, streaming companies, and other industry groups. Continue Reading

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Publisher hits Spotify with $1.6 billion licensing lawsuit

Publisher Wixen has sued Spotify over claims that the streaming service used thousands of songs without the proper license. The suit was filed on December 29 in California federal court. Wixen is looking to recoup damages of at least $1.6 billion plus injunctive relief. The publisher represents titles by several well-known artists, including Tom Petty, Neil Young, and Stevie Nicks. Continue Reading

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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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Songwriters move closer toward proposing blanket mechanical licensing law

Several organizations within the music industry are making an effort to create a blanket mechanical license for digital music services. David Israelite, president and CEO of the National Music Publishers Association, introduced the latest push at the monthly meeting of the Association of Independent Music Publishers. The proposed law would streamline the process of collecting mechanical royalties as well as revising the rate-setting process. Continue Reading