Feeds

Oz High Court says streaming music is not a 'broadcast'

Waves away Big Radio's royalty-free streaming bid

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Commercial Radio Australia (CRA) has been denied permission to appeal to the High Court in an attempt to overrule decisions in lower courts that will force it to pay twice for music it broadcasts – once for over the air and another for simultaneous internet broadcast.

The case over just how radio broadcasters should pay for music used in their internet streams has burbled along for years. The Phonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA) has sought two royalty payments, arguing that the net and the airwaves are separate media and therefore deserve separate payments.

The PPCA did so because its role is to generate revenue for recording artists by getting those who play their music to pay for the privilege. The organisation offers licences for radio stations, but also for shops, fitness classes and other places where music forms part of the background noise.

The CRA represents radio stations who, like all media in these days of “the Google at my ad revenue”, prefer to keep spending under control. The CRA therefore liked the idea of paying once for music even if its member stations used it on the air and online. That argument won the approval of Australia's Federal Court last year, but was subsequently overturned on appeal.

Australia's High Court is the nation's ultimate tribunal, but before one can appear before it many applicants must seek leave to appeal in a kind of pre-trial that tests whether the case is covered by the Court's jurisdiction. CRA failed that test, meaning the Federal Court stands and its members are bound to negotiate two licences with the PPCA.

The Court's thinking on the matter was that under Australia's Copyright Act a live stream is not a broadcast. That nicety means a new licence is justified.

The PPCA says ((PDF) that's a tremendous idea in part because it busts the one per cent of revenue cap on license fees radio stations pay to play music. The CRA has not issued a statement about the decision, but broadcasters hoping to cash in on internet radio now know they have an extra cost to consider.

The decision may be felt by podcast listeners as The Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) excises music from podcasts that reply programs first broadcast over the airwaves. The ABC and other broadcaster+podcasters now have clear guidance on what they need to do if they wish to add music to future downloadable programs. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media
Not paying Murdoch? You're gonna get a right LEGALLING - thanks to automated software
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Ballmer quits Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
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.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.