Feeds

SoundExchange offers royalty compromise to Net radio stations

$2,500 limit on multi-stream stations

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Music industry taxman SoundExchange is offering a new deal to internet radio broadcasters who say upcoming royalty hikes will kill online broadcasting.

The proposed compromise puts a ceiling on the new set of hefty royalty rate hikes that takes effect July 15. Previously, the fee increase called for webcasters to be charged $500 per station per month in royalties. That would spell certain doom for stations such as Pandora and Live364 which offer thousands of streams over the internet.

Under SoundExchange's latest olive branch, royalties would be capped at $2,500 per service, regardless of the overall number of stations or channels they are streaming.

"The idea that the per-channel minimum might have a disproportionate impact on certain internet radio stations was never presented to the Copyright Royalty Judges," SoundExchange general counsel Michael Huppe said in a statement. "Nevertheless, at the request of Congress, we are trying to work with the small subset of affected webcasters, and are offering this proposal in the hopes of addressing those concerns."

The Digital Media Association, the trade group representing internet broadcasters, said it will accept the proposal if the cap was extended to the entire term of the CRB's ruling, which would terminate in 2010. Currently the rate cap proposal ends in 2008.

"Any offer that doesn't cover the full term is simply a stay of execution for Internet radio," DiMA said in a release. "The looming 2009 billion-dollar threat is destabilizing and inhibits investment and growth. DiMA, like thousands of artists and millions of consumers, wants a solution that promotes long-term industry growth. A billion-dollar 'minimum fee' is equally absurd in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 or 2010. It should be eliminated – period."

SoundExchange sniped back to El Reg that it would honor an earlier complaint by DiMA about negotiating terms in public - but confirmed talks are taking place regarding the compromise.

In an earlier compromise, SoundExchange offered to allow small commercial and nonprofit internet radio broadcasters provisions to pay lower royalty rates based on a percentage of their revenues. Such operators would pay a royalty of 10 per cent of their first $250,000 gross revenue and 12 per cent on all revenue above that. To compare, satellite radio broadcasters pay 7.5 per cent of revenue.

Web radio broadcasters have been fighting the royalty hike tooth-and-nail since it was first revealed. Two weeks ago, more than 10,000 US web radio broadcasters canceled their usual programming in a "day of silence" protest. Participants ranged from Yahoo! to WebRadioPugetSound - which canceled their programming or aired public-service announcements urging listeners to support the repeal of the royalty rates. ®

HP ProLiant Gen8: Integrated lifecycle automation

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
Bose says today is F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.