House Passes Digital Music Licensing Package

This was posted today in Radio World:

Bills head to Senate accompanied by applause from stakeholders

The House has unanimously passed the Music Modernization Act, a compromise bill that creates a framework for better compensating artists for digital plays of their music and making it easier for music rights organizations to collect those fees from distributors of streamed music like Pandora and Spotify, as they do from traditional plays on TV and radio.

The bill has been billed as the most significant change in music licensing laws in decades, and drew praise from a chorus of stakeholders. It now heads to the Senate, where it is also expected to pass.

It actually incorporates a trio of bills. The base Modernization Act creates a single licensing entity for reproduction rights for digital uses, like those of Spotify, Pandora, Google, Apple and Amazon. It also randomly assigns judges to preside over ASCAP and BMI rate-setting cases, according to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

The package also includes The CLASSICS (Compensating Legacy Artists for their Songs, Service, and Important Contributions to Society) Act which compensates artists for pre-1972 recordings, which had previously not been eligible for digital royalties.

You can read the entire article here

It should be interesting to see the impact this has on availability of songs and costs of streaming services over time.

Robert Gulley, AK3Q, is the author of this post and a regular contributor to the SWLing Post. Robert also blogs at All Things Radio.

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2 thoughts on “House Passes Digital Music Licensing Package

  1. Tom Reitzel

    Oh, brother. Fascism is still in vogue. Remeber Mussolini’s famous quotation. Corporations own the government. In no way, shape, or form should a copyrighted work extend beyond 10 years. Twenty years wasn’t enough evidently so reduce the limit to 10 years. Corporations want it both ways, i.e. for the taxpayer to pay for the corrupt legal system which allows them special privileges beyond murder and maintaining those special privileges into perpetuity. I’d suggest forcing corportations to PAY for those special privileges by compensating taxpayers for funding the legal system, e.g. making a copyrighted work public domain after 10 years or paying for the courts themselves. The time should be up for the crazily corrupt.


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