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RECAP: ASCAP Settles With DOJ, SOCAN Acquires MediaNet, U.K. Announces Safe Harbor Review

Posted by Glen Sears | May 16, 2016 9:27 am | No Comments

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Story of the Week

ASCAP Pays $1.75 Million To Settle DoJ Investigation
The U.S. Department of Justice announced on Thursday that the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) has agreed to pay $1.75 million to settle allegations that they had engaged in anti-competitive practices in violation of a court order. According to DoJ, ASCAP signed contracts with approximately 150 songwriters and publisher members that made ASCAP the exclusive licensor of their performance rights, despite provisions in a court order prohibiting ASCAP from interfering with its members’ ability to directly license their songs.

As part of the settlement, ASCAP has also promised not to enter into further exclusive contracts and agreed to reform its licensing practices to remove music publishers from overseeing ASCAP’s licensing.

“Settling this matter was the right thing to do for our members,” said ASCAP CEO Elizabeth Matthews in a statement announcing the settlement. “With these issues resolved, we continue our focus on leading the way towards a more efficient, effective and transparent music licensing system and advocating for key reforms to the laws that govern music creator compensation.”

Read the full story on Hypebot.

Top Music News Stories

SOCAN Predicts Dramatic YouTube Revenue Uplift As It Acquires Medianet. Canada-based collection society SOCAN has acquired B2B music tech provider Medianet in a bid to ‘ensure that creators and music publishers, including artists and all relevant rights owners, are properly compensated for their work.’

Medianet, SOCAN, YouTube And The Kobalt Effect. “SOCAN has seized the initiative with the Medianet acquisition, setting out its stall as a rights society that puts tech innovation, effective reporting and accountability at the centre of what it does for its members.” says Mark Mulligan, “It has also positioned itself as a contender for global successor of the GRD—consider this the first major repercussion of the innovation and transparency agenda that Kobalt set in motion.”

U.K. Government Announces Anti-Piracy Strategy, Safe Harbor Review. Published today, the “Protecting Creativity, Supporting Innovation: IP Enforcement 2020” policy paper sets out its four year strategy “to address the multiple and growing challenges posed by IP infringement and counterfeiting” across multiple creative and retail industries.

$300 Million – $600 Million US IPO Planned For China Based Streaming Music Service. China Music Corp, which is backed by Chinese Internet giant Tencent Holdings and operates Chinese digital music services Kugou and Kuwo, has hired Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley to prep a US IPO that could take place later this year, sources are telling the Wall Street Journal.

Facebook Working with WMG on ’Slideshows’ Music Feature. Within the past few weeks, the social network has quietly initiated talks with music labels about licensing a limited amount of songs that users can upload to, say, summer vacation videos or birthday parties, sources said.

Beatport Suspends Auction and Shuts Down Streaming, News and Events Divisions. “Beatport has made a strategic decision to return to its roots, focusing its efforts on its flagship Beatport Store, the leading global source of electronic music for DJs and consumers,” SFX wrote in a statement provided to Billboard.

Irving Azoff Pens An Open Letter To YouTube: ‘The Root Of The Problem Here Is You.’ “You have built a business that works really well for you and for Google, but it doesn’t work well for artists. If you think it is just the labels and publishers who are complaining, you are wrong. The music community is traditionally a very fractured one, but on this we are united.”

Amazon Launches a New Rival for YouTube. Amazon Video Direct, which kicked off Tuesday, shares money with video creators through the method they choose: ads, subscriptions, rentals, or simply by the number of hours streamed to tens of millions of subscribers of Amazon Prime, its two-day shipping service.

Apple Music Set To Receive A Facelift. Although the service has certainly been picking up users, Apple Music has received some complaints about its less-than-stellar interface. It looks like this is about to change, however, with Apple set to give its streaming service a much needed facelift, in hopes of catching up with Spotify.

Our best wishes for a great week! – MediaNet

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