There are a number of reasons for the inaccessibility of this information, one of which is the frequent sale of individual works and entire catalogs and the infrequent recordation of these sales. Further, in recent years there has been a proliferation, particularly in pop music, of songs with many writers, each of whom generally owns a share of the work, making it difficult for potential licensees without great knowledge of music licensing to determine whose permission they need for a certain use. The Future of Music Coalition illustrated this point using a hit song by Flo Rida that had 13 writers who were represented by a total of 17 publishers.
There’s been a lot of back-and-forth regarding a recent court ruling that maintains the current royalty rates paid by Internet radio company Pandora to ASCAP, a 100 year-old performing rights organization (PRO) that collects money for AM/FM and Internet radio play then distributes that revenue to songwriters and publishers.
In the coming days, we hope to offer varying viewpoints from individuals and groups in this ecosystem. For now, we’ll try to demystify this decision and the licensing frameworks that informed it.
Well, maybe not the sound check, but the live performance counts — at least with BMI. The Performance Rights Organization (PRO) BMI recently established BMI Live, an online program that lets songwriters upload setlists from their performances at live music venues — and receive payment for the songs that are played.
BMI has always paid royalties based on live performances, but only conducted a census survey on the songs played on the top 200 tours.
With BMI Live, the PRO aims to provide its registered songwriters and composers with financial revenue from performance venues as small as your local music venue, or as large as Madison Square Garden. read more
The last few years have been a roller coaster ride for the music industry.
As stories have moved from Arts & Entertainment to the Business sections
of major media outlets, the public has become aware of the new realities
facing the industry. Whether its the challenge of the internet,
or increasing globalization, everything seems to be up for grabs. Performing
Rights Organizations (PROs) have been at the center of a lot of these
controversies. Although most musicians and songwriters are familiar with
ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC, what do these organizations do and how are they
positioning themselves and their clients for the future? read more
Attorney Walter McDonough's Policy Primer for the Music/Tech Environment
Thursday, June 15, 2000
Walter McDonough is an entertainment/intellectual law attorney practicing in Boston, MA. This is part two of a continuing discussion with Walter about the legal and legislative maneuvering that’s underway surrounding digital download technology. Walter is also one of four founding members of the Future of Music Coalition, a lobby group that represents the interests of independent bands and labels in the digital age.
J = Jenny Toomey
W = Walter McDonough
J: Okay, tell me what specific legislation concerns you most? read more
Government Hearings on Effect of Internet on Small Labels
Thursday, June 1, 2000
The House of Representatives’ Small Business Committee held hearings on Wednesday, May 24, 2000 regarding “new market possibilities for small music labels and entrepreneurs created by the Internet”. The Committee heard testimony from Chuck D from Public Enemy/Rapstation.com, Peter Harter from EMusic.com, Tom Silverman from Tommy Boy Records, and Ric Dube from Webnoize. Jenny and I attended the hearings, so here’s a quick synopsis. read more