KCRW's On The Beat Reveals Hidden Details In SoundExchange Offer
KCRW's weekly music commentary, On The Beat, reveals that the new SoundExchange offer to music webcasters concerning internet music royalties includes quid pro quos that the organization did not disclose in its July 29 press release.
KCRW commentator Celia Hirschman reports that webcasters would have to agree to cease their lobbying efforts on behalf of the Internet Radio Equality Act. Currently, 124 Representatives are co-sponsoring the Act, which would overturn the Copyright Royalty Board ruling mandating new higher royalty rates and per channel charges.
Hirschman discloses that the SoundExchange offer only extends for 18 more months. She points out that webcasters would then be forced to "fight all over again" to cover 2009 and 2010, the period included in the CRB decision.
Sound Exchange has offered to cap the $500 per channel fee at $2,500. KCRW has since learned that, as part of the agreement, webcasters would also have to withdraw their legal motion for a stay on the per channel minimum issue. An Appeal and Request for Emergency Stay is currently before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Webcasters are asking the Court to stay the new royalties until the appeal is heard.
Hirschman notes that the CRB decision would have disastrous results on major music webcasters. "Live 365 would face $10 million dollars in royalty fees. Yahoo, Real and Pandora collectively owe over a billion dollars in royalties. None of these organizations generate a fraction of income from streaming to possibly pay these fees."
"The deadline for paying the 2006 and 2007 royalties is July 15."
On The Beat opens the velvet rope of the record industry. In her weekly discussion of music industry trends, Hirschman regularly discusses hot topic issues like payola, the digital revolution, record label mergers, as well as the decline of record retailers. She also covers the innovators and entrepreneurs, who are bringing new light in an otherwise difficult time. Hirschman founded the marketing consulting company Downtown Marketing and also runs the UK-based record label One Little Indian in North America.
On the Beat airs on Wednesdays from 4:44 to 4:48pm. Text for this segment, "Cloudy Issues Surround Internet Radio," is available online here at KCRW.com: http://www.kcrw.com/etc/programs/ob
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