Soundexchange Announces Plan To Audit Popular Internet Music Sites
Washington, D.C., -- SoundExchange® is the sole entity designated by the United States Copyright Office to collect royalties from noninteractive Internet music services that stream sound recordings pursuant to compulsory licenses established by Congress. In this role SoundExchange has the right to audit digital music services to ensure that they are accurately paying royalties due copyright owners and performers.
SoundExchange is starting its enforcement program by focusing on the most popular websites -- the sites that would owe the most royalties under the statutory licenses. The audits will begin sometime after February 1, 2006, and will cover the years 2002, 2003 and 2004.
The music services to be audited include:
Bonneville International Corp.
Clear Channel Communications
Cox Radio Interactive
Real Networks, Inc.
Susquehanna Radio Corp.
"The audits, which are authorized under Copyright Office regulations, are intended to ensure that all of the copyright owners and performers whose songs are being streamed are being fairly and appropriately compensated for the use of their recordings," commented SoundExchange’s Executive Director John L. Simson.
General Counsel Gary R. Greenstein added, "SoundExchange intends to commence regular audits of services, both large and small, to ensure that everyone is competing on a level playing field. We owe it to the artists and labels we represent to ensure that they get paid what they are owed."
SoundExchange is the first performance rights organization in the United States to collect and distribute digital audio transmission royalties to artists and sound recording copyright owners. SoundExchange represents over 1,000 different record companies and 12,000 recording artists, and is seeking out more labels and artists who are owed royalties for sound recordings played on digital cable and satellite television music services, satellite radio services or streamed via noninteractive webcast. The nonprofit organization is governed by a board of artist and label representatives. Services include track level accounting of performances to all members and collection and distribution of foreign royalties to all members. All artists, labels and/or their representatives are invited to visit www.soundexchange.com.