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RECAP: SoundExchange Wants Major Rate Increases, NMPA Wants Facebook Publishing Deals, Pandora Premium Launch Date,

Posted by Glen Sears | October 31, 2016 10:02 am | No Comments

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SoundExchange Asks U.S. Copyright Royalty Board For Major Rate Increases

Story of the Week
SoundExchange has submitted a new rate proposal and testimony in the SDARS III royalty rate proceeding from which the Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) will set rates for the years 2018-2022 for Sirius XM’s satellite radio service, as well as, cable/satellite TV music services provided by Music Choice and Muzak.

SoundExchange has proposed a rate that is the greater of either 23% of revenue or $2.48 per subscriber per month in 2018 with annual increases. The current rates for Sirius XM are 10.5% of Sirius XM’s “Gross Revenues” in 2016 and 11% in 2017. For Music Choice and Muzak, SoundExchange has proposed a per subscriber per month rate starting at $ 0.019 per subscriber per month with annual increases. The current rate is 8.5% of Gross Revenues in both 2016 and 2017.

The CRB will hold a hearing beginning April 19, 2017, which will last several weeks. After final briefing by the parties, the CRB will issue its rate determination by December 15, 2017.

Read the full story on Hypebot.

Top Music News Stories

Are Higher Royalty Payments Really Coming Soon From Sirius XM? Bobby Owsinski claims “SoundExchange likes to reach for the stars when it comes to proposed rates; though these seem reasonable for everyone involved in the music business, effectively doubling a rate does put any distributor in an immediate financial hole.”

NMPA Calls For Facebook To Sign Music Publishing Deals. “Facebook’s inactivity and unresponsiveness has left publishers no other choice but to attempt to remove the music that amounts to stealing from their songwriters — To aid in this effort, NMPA and our member publishers have sent thousands of takedown requests, but this is merely a drop in the bucket.”

Does The Music Industry Need To Dump Non-Discretionary Pricing? MiDiA Research’s Mark Mulligan claims in a new blog piece that one of streaming music’s top priorities “should be to ensure that European music fans get a fair deal compared to their US peers.”

Pandora Premium Set For January After December Unveiling. “It will have all the features of Plus, so the rewinding, skipping, offline etc — but it will now include the ability to search and play, the ability to build and share playlists, taking everything offline and many, many more Pandora features that we can’t reveal now for competitive purposes,” said CEO Westergren.

Apple Music Revenues Up 22% Despite Device Decline. Despite falling device sales, “App Store revenue continued to skyrocket, while Music revenue grew by 22% thanks to the growing popularity of Apple Music,” CEO Tim Cook told analysts.

Universal Music, Avenged Sevenfold To Launch VRLIVE Virtual Reality Concert Platform. “We are excited about our partnership with Universal Music Group as it gives us the opportunity to provide the viewing audience with unprecedented levels of access,” stated VRLIVE Founder and CEO Heiner Lippman.

Sub Pop’s Founder Launched A Fun Music Remixing App. 8Stem is an extremely slick mobile app for iOS that turns remixing into a simple drag and drop process — Find a song you like (Seattle-based Merge signee Telekinesis jumped out at me), click Remix This, and the app will lay it out, broken down into wave forms and sections.

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RECAP: SOCAN Launches Blockchain Licensing Platform, A2IM Warns of Counterfitting, How Spotify Could Become A “Label”

Posted by Glen Sears | October 24, 2016 9:47 am | No Comments

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SOCAN To Build New Canadian Digital Licensing Marketplace/Platform

Story of the Week
Nashville-based Core Rights has partnered with SOCAN and Re:Sound to form Canada’s first country-wide digital marketplace for licensing music rights. It is both a blockchain-enabled licensing solution that is simple to use, and a highly efficient one-stop shop for businesses using music, such as restaurants, hairdressers, dentists’ offices, retail stores, and more.

“SOCAN continually innovates to make music licensing easier and more accurate, so that music creators can be compensated fairly and faster for the use of their work,” said SOCAN CEO Eric Baptiste. “With Core Rights we look forward to building the future of licensing, connecting more people with music, as we strive to transform music rights in Canada and worldwide.”

“We are so excited to be creating the first truly electronic marketplace for music licensing along with music industry powerhouses, SOCAN and Re:Sound,” Jim King, CEO and Founder of Core Rights, LLC. “Working together we will deliver to the Canadian music industry both a more efficient one-stop digital marketplace for music licensing and using our patent-pending analytics and lead generation services provide much greater penetration into the Canadian business environment.”

Read the full story on Music Row

Top Music News Stories

A2IM Warns of Counterfeit CDs Across Amazon.com. A2IM said it believes illicit copies of relatively new albums are being manufactured in China and are so close to the original that “even the legitimate manufacturer cannot tell without very close examination.”

Music Streaming Services Too Expensive for Many, U.K. Study Finds. According to a poll conducted by YouGov and Zuora, around 10 percent of British consumers currently subscribe to a premium service, with half of the remaining 90 percent suggesting they are too expensive.

ASCAP Sues 10 Music Venues For Not Being Licensed To Play Music. “Hundreds of thousands of well-run businesses across the nation recognize the importance of paying music creators to use their music, and understand that it is both the lawful and right thing to do—however, each of the establishments sued today has decided to use music without compensating songwriters.”

APRA AMCOS Reports Record Revenues. APRA AMCOS CEO Brett Cottle said the organizations enjoyed “an exceptional year” as overall revenue grew 11% year-on-year to A$333 million ($254 million), and net distributable revenue rose 8.73% to A$285.5 million ($218 million).

How Spotify Can Become A Next Generation “Label.” Mark Mulligan of MiDiA Research discusses his theory that Spotify could create “the full stack music concept that Access Industries, Liberty Global and Pandora have been pursuing” to become more than music retail.

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RECAP: Amazon & Pandora Launch New Music Services, Songwriters Struggle With Production Costs, Jimmy Iovine Interview

Posted by Glen Sears | October 17, 2016 9:40 am | No Comments

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Amazon Launches Three-Tiered Music Unlimited Streaming Service

Story of the Week
Amazon already had a music streaming service, Prime Music, which launched two years ago with a relatively small catalog — around two million songs compared to the 35-million-plus available on Spotify, for example. Music Unlimited, however, will expand that catalog to the level of Spotify and its other competitors — and presents a significant uphill battle for “Big Green” and the others when trying to woo Echo owners.

Music Unlimited arrives at an auspicious time for the streaming market. Just two weeks ago, it was validated stateside by a report from the RIAA, which attributed an 8.1 percent growth for the overall recording industry to the sector. As well, competition between its major players has gone from a simmer to a boil over both exclusives — now outlawed by Universal Music — and helping casual listeners with new music discovery, a perennial problem when your catalog would take at least 171 years to listen to (if you listened non-stop).

“From our perspective, with Prime we helped push the music industry away from the one-size-fits all approach to music streaming, and to go after different customer segments,” Boom says when asked about negotiations around that $3.99 price point. “But more important than that, [the industry] sees the importance and the promise of the voice interface in the home.

Read the full story on Billboard.

Top Music News Stories

What Do Amazon’s New Deals With Labels & Publishers Look Like?While Amazon is not eating the cost of the $3.99-per-month Echo-only subscription, it is paying for the difference on the $7.99-per-month option available to Prime subscribers, meaning its “losing” $2 on each subscription.

Lefsetz And Mulligan Assess Amazon Music Unlimited. “More and more of music consumption will be voice and gesture driven and Amazon is setting the pace for the voice side of the ‘Zero UI’ equation,” they wrote. “There is less friction between the listener and the music. The music becomes the experience.”

Pandora Rebrands As Its Plus Radio Subscription Rolls Out. Importantly for Pandora’s future is the launch of Pandora Plus, its new subscription tier, which itself is effectively a rebranding of the existing Pandora One with some new features — the $4.99-a-month subscription will be a step towards Pandora’s full $9.99 on-demand service, which will debut later in the year.

How Production Costs Are Affecting Songwriters. In this fresh piece off of MusicThinkTank, Mylène Besançon takes a look at how high production costs are negatively affecting songwriters.

Infographic: A Basic Explanation of Streaming Money. Jordan Bromley and Nicole Sollberger, a partner and associate respectively in the Music Group of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP did a pretty great job of explaining how this plate of spaghetti gets made.

Spotify Paid Out Over A Billion To Labels This Year. Bobby Owsinski claims the streaming platform has already shelled out $1.2 billion in royalties this year, suggesting it may be benefiting the industry more than previously thought.

Bob Dylan Wins Nobel Prize For Literature. Dylan, 75, is the first musician to win the award, and his selection on Thursday is perhaps the most radical choice in a history stretching back to 1901.

Apple Music Tops J.D. Power Streaming Satisfaction Study. The results were good news for Apple Music, which topped the rankings with an index ranking of 834 based on a 1,000-point scale. Rhapsody (826), Pandora (825) and Spotify (824) were all above the industry average of 822 points, with TuneIn (820), Amazon Prime Music (818) and Google Play Music (818) only slightly behind.

Jimmy Iovine on the Future of Apple Music. “We are an adjunct to labels and artists. We are building something that can help labels and artists and undiscovered artists. Yeah, it’s a popular culture company, but it’s also a tool. And that’s what we’re building. We’re not in the record business.”

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RECAP: Dubset Launches Remixes on Streaming, Techstars Announces Music Startup Incubator, Azoff Goes After “Pirates”

Posted by Glen Sears | October 10, 2016 10:16 am | No Comments

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Spotify And Apple Music Dubset Deals Start To Pay Off

Startup Dubset Media is trying to license the kind of remixes and mash-ups previously only available on SoundCloud for other streaming services, with Apple Music and Spotify already on its slate of distribution deals.

TechCrunch reported that one of the first Dubset-licensed remixes has gone live on Spotify and Apple Music: a DJ Jazzy Jeff remix of Anderson Paak’s ‘Room In Here’. Interestingly, on Spotify the track’s rightsholder is listed as Dubset Media.

“Mixes are coming next,” Dubset boss Stephen White told TechCrunch. “Content owners have been very supportive. The publishing and label deals we have under license provides a large catalogue to work with.”

Read the full story on Music Ally.

Top Music News Stories

Techstars to Launch Accelerator for Music-Industry Tech Startups. It is the second music-focused accelerator to start in recent months, [paywall] after artist-management firm Th3rd Brain started one to help launch careers for individual musicians.

Irving Azoff Claims YouTube “Pirates” Are “Really Evil.” The CEO and Chairman of Azoff MSG Entertainment, Irving Azoff, is leveling some heavy criticism at YouTube in very public war as he attempts to get the popular video sharing site to properly compensate artists for their music.

What Is Google Daydream And What Does It Mean For Music VR? There are a growing number of VR/music startups who are expected to explore the Daydream platform alongside Gear VR, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and other VR platforms.

Amazon Reportedly to Launch Amazon Music Unlimited and Echo-Only Streaming Service. A new post from German blogger Carsten Knobloch points to a clue hidden deep in the code for the Amazon Music app for the Fire TV media streamer that shows the company is due to launch their new music service soon.

Deezer Partners With Feature.fm to Let Artists Pay for Sponsored Plays. Feature.fm promises “unprecedented exposure” to artists who find themselves outside the radio system, offering a self-service way to upload music, choose a target audience and then monitor its performance — for a fee.

Download Revenue To Shrink 50% As Streaming Music Grows To 950 Million Users. According to the latest forecast by Strategy Analytics, streaming will account for 95% of all mobile music use, and that will grow the market to $12 billion by 2022.

TuneCore Acquires JustGo, Relaunches It As A Free Social Media Tool. TuneCore Social offers streamlined posts to Facebook, Twitter, Mixcloud, Soundcloud, YouTube, and Instagram, plus scheduled posts and analytics.

Spotify Reportedly Dealing With Malware Issue On Its Free Service. Spotify has acknowledged the issue, blaming “an isolated issue with an ad on our free tier” and promising that “We have now identified the source of the problem and have shut it down.

BitTorrent Reportedly Fires Co-CEOs, Shutters Streaming Service. During Delamar and Johnson’s brief tenure, the company launched BitTorrent Live, an app featuring 16 channels of live streaming content from independent video producers.

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RECAP: Labels Sue YouTube MP3 Ripper, Congress Urges ‘100% Licensing’ Decision U-Turn, Shazam Finally Profits

Posted by Glen Sears | October 3, 2016 8:53 am | No Comments

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Major Record Labels Sue Over Ripping Audio Tracks from YouTube Videos

Story of the Week

Universal, Warner Bros, Sony and other big record labels are suing the operators of YouTube-mp3.org, a service that allows its users to rip the audio from videos streamed on YouTube. The plaintiffs filed a copyright lawsuit in California federal court, stating, “Stream ripping has become a major threat to the music industry, functioning as an unlawful substitute for the purchase of recorded music and the purchase of subscriptions to authorized streaming services.”

With a few simple mouse clicks, the lawsuit reports, infringing copies of sound recordings are made available in MP3 format. The plaintiffs suggest that “tens, or even hundreds, of millions of tracks are illegally copied and distributed by stream ripping services each month.”

Google, which owns YouTube, is not a party in this lawsuit, but the record labels also claim the defendants are illicitly circumventing technology measures that YouTube has implemented to control access to and prevent copying of works.

Read the full story on Billboard

Top Music News Stories

Legal Threats Have Almost No Impact on Music Piracy, Study Finds. The study, published in the journal Risk Analysis, found that most people perceive the risks of music piracy as being simply too low to affect their behavior.

Congress Members Send A.G. Letter Urging Dept. of Justice to Reverse Songwriting Decision. “We believe a well-functioning music marketplace benefits America’s music-loving public, businesses that use music to connect with their customers, and, especially, more than one million songwriters and composers whose creative work is the lifeblood of the entire American music economy.”

Sony Completes Deal For Michael Jackson’s Share Of Sony/ATV. Announced earlier this year, the acquisition took its time to happen due to regulatory interest among other factors.[paywall]

Spotify, Rumored to Be Mulling a SoundCloud Acquisition, Probably Can’t Afford It Right Now. if it was working with the $700 million valuation that Twitter put on it, Spotify would have to spend 43 percent of its available funds to buy a company that, at least at first blush, seems a strange purchase.

Shazam Hits 1 Billion Downloads and Turns a Profit. The London-based firm on Thursday announced that revenue from advertisers has surpassed other sources, including from music partners for its ubiquitous app, to propel it into profitability before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortization.

Irving Azoff to New YouTube Music Chief Lyor Cohen: ‘We Are Counting On You.’ “We are counting on you, Lyor, to lead YouTube to provide fair payments to artists and give them more creative control. Congratulations, Lyor, I know you can get it done.

Rdio’s Bankruptcy: A Labyrinth of Financial Winners, Losers and Lawsuits. Ed Christman takes a close look at the financial winners of losers of Rdio’s bankruptcy, which was imposed on the company as a condition of Pandora’s purchase.

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