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SoundExchange Offers Discounted Music Royalties to Small Webcasters
/ August 22, 2007 3:00 pm

Washington – SoundExchange, the entity set up by the record labels to collect and distribute digital music royalties, announced on Wednesday that it has offered small webcasters a discounted rate through 2010, under essentially the same terms set out in the Small Webcaster Settlement Act.

Under the terms, small webcasters — defined as those earning $1.25 million or less in total annual revenues, and 5 million or fewer aggregate tuning hours each month — would pay royalty fees of 10% or 12% or revenue.

The proposal would only cover music from major labels and other represented by SoundExchange, while other music would be subject to the full royalty rates.

Small webcasters have until Sept. 14 to accept the agreement; those who do not sign, but continue streaming, will be held to the much higher rates announced by the Copyright Royalty Board in March.

SoundExchange said it is making the offer in response to concerns expressed by small commercial webcasters, and a request from Congressman Howard Coble (D-Calif.) and Howard Coble (R-N.C.).

"Representatives Berman and Coble believed that extending to 2010 the terms that small webcasters had from 1998 through 2005 was a reasonable way to give them some business certainty as they grow their services, and so we acted," said SoundExchange executive director John Simson.

"These rates, however, mean no increase in royalty payments to artists and labels over 13 years."

Simson did not address any ongoing negotiations between the agency and large webcasters, other than to note that, "substantial progress has been made on all of the issues of concern with respect to the CRJ's decision on webcasting."


Related Links: (Small Webcaster Settlement Act)


  • John Simson is quoted as saying “These rates, however, mean no increase in royalty payments to artists and labels over 13 years.”

    That’s not true. SoundExchange claimed earlier this year that webcasting revenue had increased over the past few years from $50 Million to $500 Million. Personally, I doubt the revenues increased that much. However, if they increased at all, then so did royalty payments to artists and labels!

    12% of $500 Million is a lot more money than 12% of $50 Million – at least it was last time I checked.

    How anyone can justify increasing the percentage of revenue at all is a mystery to me. Surely if the percentage is the same year after year, but the webcasting industry grows, the artists and labels would share in that growth. Now that’s “reasonable”

  • They’ve basically offered us a license for SoundExchange members. If you play a lot of indie bands, you will be paying the current CRB rates for that music. According to Live365’s statistics, independent artists get 56% of airplay on their stations. This is SoundExchange pretending to offer us a deal so that congress can see them as benevolent, while they’re really just cornering the internet radio market to increase airplay for the major labels. Congress is mostly clueless about how this all works and will likely see this as a genuine offer from SoundExchange. Talk about a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

  • Only music I listen to Mandrin pop, standards, rap, blues, r&b are not available on AM/ FM or Satalite. I would really like to know how artists loose money in US. With me it is a try before you buy thing. I buy, rip, and don’t share. Tell me how being deinied webcasts from Singapore hurts the artists whose albums I buy when I hear them? How can it do anything other than expose me to new artists, and new offerings from my favorites? The greedy folks on the satalite removed the Chinese stations because they could get more money for the bandwith. That pig Dianne Feinstine, and her husband that rip off Chinese & and Americans alike give her dreck about intellectual property rights. Bullshit! Those rich lefty to the mannor born hypoctites, and their minions are intent to NOT “leave anyone behind” they don’t screw to their advantage! I have yet to hear the RICH Lefty PIGS lament about the lack of diversity on satalite radio while trying to screw me. F..K them, the horse they rode in on, and their putrid lap dogs. Make them subject to ALL the laws they use to screw us.

    “The name Smith & Wesson should be a prominate name in all Black households” Ida Wells. Founding member NAACP, feminist, anti-lynching adovcate, and all around awesome American Hero! I’m sure Dianne would run from her and hide under her bed!

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