Breaking News – DiMA and SoundExchange reach agreement

Report: SoundExchange and Major Webcasters Reach Agreement

SoundExchange and the major record labels have just reached an agreement with the large webcasting services over Internet Radio royalty rates, according to a report by Billboard.biz.

Under the agreement which extends to 2010, large commercial webcasters AOL, Live365, MTV, RealNetworks, Pandora and Yahoo! will not have to pay more than $50,000 per service as a per-station or per-channel minimum royalty to webcast sound recordings, according to a source close to the negotiations.

The deal was reached late today in New York during a confidential meeting between representatives from all the major labels and the large digital services, according to the source.

The Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) decision earlier this year set no limit to the $500 per-channel or per-station minimum fee that services must pay to SoundExchange. A decision that caused a massive outcry in the community and many said was the death of Internet Radio.

No final agreement has been reached yet with small webcastersyet, but SoundExchange has offered to carry forward old rates through 2010.

and from www.kurthanson.com we have this:

 



BY DANIEL MCSWAIN
SoundExchange and
a number of webcast services have reached a deal to cap the contentious $500 per-channel minimum fee for large webcasters.

The deal, reached today at a private meeting in New York City, will cap the per-channel fee at $50,000 annually. Services party to today’s agreement include DiMA-member stations AOL, Yahoo! LaunchCast, Pandora, Live365, MTV, and RealNetworks.

The per-performance rates set by the CRB on March 2 are not affected by the deal.

Among the other stipulations of the deal are:

  • An agreement by webcasters to provide full census reporting for all streams (24 hrs/day, 365 days/year) beginning within the next six months.
  • Representatives of webcasters and SoundExchange (among them tech experts), will meet at least every six weeks to discuss issues and potential solutions relating to stream-ripping. DiMA-member webcasters also agree to “identify, review, internally test and evaluate technologies to prevent stream-ripping”.

According to a statement from SoundExchange, “[while] this agreement applies only to signatory services and only on behalf of SoundExchange members, it is the intention of all parties to present this agreement to the Copyright Royalty Judges and seek its adoption industry-wide.”

DiMA Executive Director Jonathan Potter called today’s negotiations “an important first step”, adding that his group “look[s] forward to the next step of negotiating the royalty rates that will allow for the growth of the Internet radio industry, a platform for music discovery for consumers.”

SoundExchange director John Simson, in a statement released after today’s deal was announced, heralded the settlement as a measure of the success of private negotiations between parties.

“With the small webcaster agreement we sent out earlier this week, with progress on the non-commercial webcaster front, and with this agreement, SoundExchange has now addressed the key issues of concern with respect to the CRB rate-setting decision while still protecting the value of sound recordings,” Simson said.

DiMA’s Jonathan Potter (pictured right) also told RAIN that all parties plan to reconvene soon to continue the negotiations, and that a sense of urgency to resolve the ongoing talks was expressed by both sides.

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