Monday, February 23, 2015
Music Business/Law Tips - "Copyright Changes Coming?"
With the advent of new media, there is pressure for the Copyright Office to update certain laws that affect songwriters, record labels and music publishers. The 4 key areas currently under review for potential reform in the United States are the following: 1. Higher digital performance royalties for publishers (as right now the record label’s share is 10-12 times more). 2. Create one stop shop global music rights organizations that would administer performance, mechanical and digital rights all in one place for easy licensing (as opposed to having many different organizations handle each individual right). 3. Pay record labels and recording artists for airplay on AM/FM radio (as right now only songwriters get paid). 4. Recognize a copyright in pre-1972 sound recordings so that royalties can be paid for those (as right now only post-1972 recordings have federal copyright protection so Sirius/XM and Pandora do not have to pay SoundExchange royalties for those). Note that Congress has no obligation to change the existing laws, and if any changes are forthcoming they might take years and be watered down. It’s all about politics and who has the most influence. Stay tuned. Ben McLane Esq Benmclane.com