[acid-jazz] Webcasters, Music Labels Appeal Online Royalty Rate

From: Bob Davis (earthjuice@PRODIGY.NET)
Date: Thu Aug 08 2002 - 15:55:27 CEST

  • Next message: sirka: "Re: [acid-jazz] Webcasters, Music Labels Appeal Online Royalty Rate"

    I haven't talked much about this issue recently, however it is yet another biggie that potentially will have a HUGE impact on the availability of music on the American consumer (dat would be YOU) and the ability of artists to expose their music to YOU without having to fork out HUGE AMOUNTS OF PAYOLA to the BLOODSUCKIN' FASCISTS (AOL, KNEE-GRO RADIO STATIONS, YAHOO, BET, CLEAR CHANNEL, etc).

    As a music consumer, my advice to you is to become as informed as possible about the players, landscape and issues as possible.
    It can get awfully confusing, and even identifying who the guys with the "Black hats & the White hats", is a constantly changing picture.
    It's often difficult to know what the facts are, without reading the "fine print".
    It is an "alphabet soup land" collection of organizations, websites, quasi-governmental agencies, big media companies, little media companies, free speech organizations and more.

    Therefore you should take the time to be proactive in getting yourselves armed with the information that you need in order to make a decision on where you stand with respect to these issues.
    Ultimately the decision will be made by Congress, so even if you don't care as a music consumer and are perfectly satisfied to just let this be "white folk bidness", you should be concerned as a voter, because eventually it's going to become an election issues and ultimatly impact your tax dollars!

    Don't depend on others to do this for you.

    There are an endless mirad of websites (probably hundreds) out there with mucho/macho information on this issue.
    I am not going to list them all here.

    They are pretty easy to find, because most of them are linked together.
    Here two places that you can start...
    (and from these points you can get to all of the others)

    Get ready to start buying more and more Brittiney Spears CD's, should these appeals be unsuccessful...

    Webcasters, Music Labels Appeal Online Royalty Rate
    Thu Aug 8,12:50 AM ET
    By Andy Sullivan

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Internet radio stations, musicians and record labels said separately Wednesday they would mount court challenges to a per-song royalty rate set by the government after years of negotiations.

    Two associations representing Internet "Webcasters," two musicians' unions and the Recording Industry Association of America said they had told a federal court in Washington that they intended to appeal the royalty rate.

    The Librarian of Congress set the rate at 0.07 cents per listener per song in June, meaning that a Webcaster would have to pay 70 cents per for every song broadcast to an audience of one thousand listeners.

    The rate will apply to a multimillion-dollar lump-sum royalty payment for all performances stretching back to 1998, and will last until a new round of negotiations begins next year.

    Many Webcasters have said the Librarian's rate is too onerous and would force them to pay out more money than they took in. Roughly 300 Webcasters have gone off the air since June, said Paul Maloney, editor of the Radio and Internet Newsletter, a trade publication.

    "It's (appeal) or shut it down. People are fighting for their industry," Maloney said.

    The Digital Media Association and the law firm Shaw Pittman said they would appeal on Webcasters' behalf.

    Record labels have said that they could live with the government's decision, but the RIAA said Wednesday that the Librarian had set the rate too low because he based his decision on one deal reached with Yahoo Inc. ,rather than some 140 deals reached with smaller Webcasters, many of which are now out of business.

    "The end result significantly undervalued the music used by Internet radio companies," said RIAA chairman Hilary Rosen in a statement.

    An official with the American Federation of Recording and Television Artists, which represents some musicians, said its appeal was motivated primarily by a desire to ensure that the terms of the agreement would not change.

    "We filed the petition to ensure that performers' rights are protected," said Ann Chaitovitz, national director of sound recordings for AFTRA.

    The American Federation of Musicians will also appeal, Chaitovitz said.

    The RIAA represents Sony Corp, AOL Time Warner Inc ., EMI Group Plc, Vivendi Universal, and Bertelsmann AG.

    Bob Davis
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