In February 2014, 19 Recordings—a record label representing artists from the TV show “American Idol” like Kelly Clarkson and Carrie Underwood—sued Sony Music for allegedly withholding royalty payments totaling $7 million. In March of this year, U.S. District Court Judge Ronnie Abrams issued a ruling allowing some of these claims to go to trial. The upshot is that, while some components of the case will move forward, the court decided that others don’t hold water. Even more recently, Sony swung back with allegations of fiduciary mismanagement at 19.
Today (June 26, 2015), the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) announced that satellite radio company SiriusXMhave settled a lawsuit brought by labels against the service for not paying royalties on older recordings.
The $210 million settlement is being touted as a win for labels, and potentially a resolution to an open legal question that has bedeviled the industry for a while now: whether recordings made before February 15, 1972 are eligible for royalties when “publicly performed” on digital radio. read more
Every so often your pals at FMC take the weekend to do stuff like… make music. Seems like whenever we do, a major industry story breaks.
To wit: Taylor Swift’s open letter to Apple regarding the “free trial” period for Apple Music, during which the 12th largest company in world decided it would not be paying royalties to artists and rightsholders.read more
Over the last year, we’ve watched with excitement as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has granted new construction permits for over 1500 new low-power FM (LPFM) radio stations across the country. These new stations are claiming space on the public airwaves to better represent the full diversity of American voices, and include stations run by community groups, activists, churches, labor unions, and college students. These stations may only have a range of a few miles, but their impact on their local communities, including musicians, can be immense.
Now, some community radio advocates have asked the FCC to allow these stations to expand their reach. A petition currently under consideration at the Commission would create provisions for LPFM stations that meet certain criteria to broadcast at 250 watts rather than just 100, thus expanding their geographic reach and allowing more listeners the chance to tune in.
As expected, Apple announced its forthcoming music streaming service on Monday at its annual WorldWide Developers Conference. The service is scheduled to launch at the end of June, and naturally, our primary focus is on how the new offerings will impact musicians. The presentation was short on details, but here are some of the questions we’ve been wrestling with (and some partial answers)
Today, House Republicans approved legislation that would prevent the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from implementing its Open Internet Order—rules set to go into effect this Friday, June 11. The worst part about this Congressional malarkey is that it is tucked into an appropriations bill that includes a whole bunch of other stuff that has nothing to do with net neutrality. read more
Last month, SoundExchange announced that legendary musician David Byrne had joined their Board of Directors, filling the seat previously held by FMC co-founder Walter McDonough. In a statement, the acclaimed singer/songwriter/artist & writer said “I am honored to join the SoundExchange board where I can leverage my experience as a performing artist and fight on behalf of all creators for fairness and the long-term value of music.”read more
Can you believe it? Future of Music Coalition turns 15 years old this month!
As part of our 15th anniversary, we’re asking our loyal blog readers (including you!) for feedback through a short online survey.
Your anonymous answers to these twenty quick questions will help us understand how to better serve our community of musicians & songwriters, managers, indie labels, technologists, legal eagles, policy wonks, and music fans.
And as an added bonus, you’ll be entered to win a pair of Audio-Technica Active Noise-Canceling headphones. They’re compact, comfy, great for travel, and will keep the music flowing all summer long.
We promise it’ll take less time than listening to “Stairway to Heaven,” and your responses will be truly helpful in shaping our education, research, and advocacy work moving forward. Thank you for your past support and helping us build for the future!