KCRW’s On The Beat Reveals Hidden Details in SoundExchange Offer

KCRW’s weekly music commentary, On The Beat, reveals that the new SoundExchange offer to music webcasters concerning internet music royalties includes quid pro quos that the organization did not disclose in its July 29 press release.

KCRW commentator Celia Hirschman reports that webcasters would have to agree to cease their lobbying efforts on behalf of the Internet Radio Equality Act. Currently, 124 Representatives are co-sponsoring the Act, which would overturn the Copyright Royalty Board ruling mandating new higher royalty rates and per channel charges. Hirschman discloses that the SoundExchange offer only extends for 18 more months. She points out that webcasters would then be forced to “fight all over again” to cover 2009 and 2010, the period included in the CRB decision.  Sound Exchange has offered to cap the $500 per channel fee at $2,500. KCRW has since learned that, as part of the agreement, webcasters would also have to withdraw their legal motion for a stay on the per channel minimum issue. An Appeal and Request for Emergency Stay is currently before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Webcasters are asking the Court to stay the new royalties until the appeal is heard.Hirschman notes that the CRB decision would have disastrous results on major music webcasters. “Live 365 would face $10 million dollars in royalty fees. Yahoo, Real and Pandora collectively owe over a billion dollars in royalties. None of these organizations generate a fraction of income from streaming to possibly pay these fees.”  “The deadline for paying the 2006 and 2007 royalties is July 15.“ On The Beat opens the velvet rope of the record industry. In her weekly discussion of music industry trends, Hirschman regularly discusses hot topic issues like payola, the digital revolution, record label mergers, as well as the decline of record retailers. She also covers the innovators and entrepreneurs, who are bringing new light in an otherwise difficult time. Hirschman founded the marketing consulting company Downtown Marketing and also runs the UK-based record label One Little Indian in North America. On the Beat airs on Wednesdays from 4:44 to 4:48pm. Text for this segment, “Cloudy Issues Surround Internet Radio,” is available online here at KCRW.com: http://www.kcrw.com/etc/programs/ob

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Click on KCRW’s 24/7 Internet Music Channel every weekday to hear web-exclusive editions of  Morning Becomes Eclectic with Nic Harcourt, New Ground with Chris Douridas, Cafe LA with Tom Schnabel and Metropolis with Jason Bentley; and on Saturdays and Sundays for The A-Track with Anne Litt, The Open Road with Gary Calamar, Chocolate City with Garth Trinidad, Nocturna with Raul Campos. Go to KCRW.com and click on “Music.”

KCRW-FM, licensed to Santa Monica College, is National Public Radio’s flagship station for Southern California. The station serves Los Angeles and Orange Counties at 89.9 FM, Ventura County at 89.1 FM on KCRU/ Oxnard-Ventura, the greater Palm Springs area at 89.3 FM on KCRI/Indio-Palm Springs and Kern and Northern LA Counties at 88.1 FM on KCRY/Mojave/Antelope Valley. KCRW can now be heard in Santa Barbara at 106.9. Other translators carry the signal to the Twentynine Palms and Yucca Valley areas at 90.7 FM, Gorman at 89.7 FM, Banning at 90.9 FM, the Ridgecrest area at 100.1 FM, the Thousand Oaks and Conejo Valley areas at 102.3 FM, Ojai at 102.1 FM, and Lemon Grove/Spring Valley in San Diego County at 89.9 FM. Every week, more than 500,000 listeners tune to the station for its eclectic and innovative non-commercial program schedule. KCRW can be found on the World Wide Web at www.KCRW.com, streaming three channels, with on-demand listening, 11 years of archived programs and a wide-ranging slate of podcasts.                

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