Feeds

Pandora sues publishers over online music royalties

Says ASCAP is being unreasonable on rates

Security for virtualized datacentres

Internet radio station Pandora has gone to court to try and get a better royalty deal from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP.)

ASCAP has over 435,000 members, ranging from the biggest music publishers to individual troubadours, and Pandora had a license with them from 2005 to 2010. But over a year of negotiations over new royalty rates have come to naught, and so Pandora is heading into court to get what it thinks is a fair deal.

Pandora argues that the current royalty rates it is being charged are unfair and are stopping it from reaching profitability. Court documents note that ASCAP has already concluded deals with similar internet radio operations, but is refusing to give Pandora the same kind of royalty rates.

"It's outrageous Pandora would try to reduce the already nominal amount they pay songwriters and music publishers, when Pandora's business model is based entirely on the creative contributions of those songwriters," said David Israelite, president of the National Music Publishers' Association (NMPA). "To file this suit at the same time that Pandora's founders are pocketing millions for themselves adds insult to injury."

That last dig seems to be directed at cofounder of Pandora Tim Westergren, who has been steadily selling his shares in the internet radio station at the rate of around $1m per month. As El Reg has pointed out, this hardly fills one with confidence about his view of the long-term viability of the company.

A lot depends on the Pandora-sponsored Internet Radio Fairness Act – IRFA (H.R. 6480/S. 3609) – which seeks to cut the amount of royalties paid to musicians by 85 per cent, as well as reducing the rights of musicians to bargain collectively for royalties to their works. ®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.