YouTube & ASCAP Announce Landmark Data Sharing Agreement, SOCAN Beats Royalty Records, Believe Digital Seeking Sale
Posted by Glen Sears | June 19, 2017 8:58 am | No Comments
Story of the Week
YouTube, ASCAP to Share Data in First-Ever Voluntary Deal
In what is the performance rights group’s first-ever fully-negotiated, voluntary licensing deal with the decade-old video hub not prompted by a rate-court proceeding, ASCAP will combine its database of 10.5 million musical works with YouTube’s data exchange, a move that ASCAP’s CEO Elizabeth Matthews says will result in bigger payouts.
Other Music News Highlights
Canada’s SOCAN Collected Record-Setting $249M In Royalties For 2016. The PRO said it recorded “new highs on almost every front,” with nearly 4,500 businesses that use music became “licensed to play” with SOCAN and 6,500 additional songwriters, composers and music publishers signed up for membership.
Merlin Deals Paying Out The Equivalent Of Nearly $1M A Day To Independent Labels. Before the end of March, Merlin’s admin fee for these members was 2% of total revenues – it proudly reduced this to 1.5% in April – suggesting its total collections in the 2016/2017 period stood at around $360M.
Believe Digital Actively Seeks Sale, Major Players Show Interest. Global independent distributor, label services provider, and TuneCore owner Believe Digital is for sale, sources tell Hypebot, and a two to three week deadline has been set for initial bids.
Sony/ATV’s Martin Bandier Calls on Spotify, Apple Music, And YouTube To Credit Songwriters. While he acknowledged that songwriters and publishers are beginning to benefit from the uptick in revenues with the rise of streaming, he was quick to note that “songwriters and music publishers, while we’re headed in the right direction, the fruits of our labor are not being equitably rewarded and we are not benefiting from the streaming revolution as meaningfully as we should.”
Spotify Revenues Hit $3.3B In 2016 – But Net Losses Soared To $597M. The streaming giant’s revenues saw healthy growth of 52%, but the ongoing cost of debt and widening operations costs ballooned its net losses over 133%.
Posted by Glen Sears | April 10, 2017 9:40 am | No Comments
Top Music News Story
SOCAN Set To Join Forces With Reproduction Rights Body SODRAC
Canadian music rights bodies SOCAN (the Society of Composers, Authors & Music Publishers of Canada) and SODRAC (Society for Reproduction Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers in Canada) are actively discussing the possibility of combining operations.
‘The integration of the management of public performance rights and reproduction rights could have many advantages and would reduce operating costs for rights holder members of each organization, and promises to increase efficiencies, leverage licensing relationships, and reduce operating costs, resulting in even more money to go to those who have earned royalties for their music and streamlined licensing for businesses using music,’ read a press release.
Other Music News Highlights
Canadian Music Rights Groups Hope to Make ‘Quick Progress’ on Merger. Baptiste expects to have board approval “within the next few months,” but notes that timeline could change: “We are meeting again. It’s going to be up to the board of SOCAN and the board of SODRAC to decide, but we hope to make quick progress on this.”
Spotify Signs Long-Term Deal With Universal, Opens Door on Windowing. The agreement, announced last week, represents the end of Spotify’s long-standing policy of granting all of its users — both free and premium alike — access to complete albums on their release dates.
Universal And Spotify’s Deal Is An Even Bigger Deal Than It Looks. Mark Mulligan writes that “Although the big focus across the industry so far is, understandably, on what this means for Spotify, it is also part of a bigger story, namely that of the maturation of the streaming market and its associated business models.”
Could Spotify ‘IPO’ (Without An IPO) As Early As September? Much has been made of Spotify’s imminent IPO, but a new report suggests the streaming service is instead considering a different approach – through a direct listing on a US stock exchange.
Google Play Music Launches in India, Undercuts Apple. Google is offering users its streaming service and radio stations for an initial discounted price of Rs 89 per month ($1.40) for those that sign up within 45 days, reports the India Times.
Major Scandal At The Copyright Office With $25 Million ‘Fake Budget’ Line Item. According to a Techdirt report, Register of Copyrights Maria Pallante put in place a fake twenty-five million dollar budget line item, and then intentionally deceived congress about it.
YouTube, Creators Respond To Monetization Threshold Change. Many throughout the industry have had strong reaction to YouTube’s changes to their monetization rules, including YouTube itself.
Digest: Big Players Back dotBlockchain, ESPN Reaches Licensing Settlement, Sprint Reveals TIDAL Details
Posted by Glen Sears | February 6, 2017 9:38 am | No Comments
Top Story Last Week
SOCAN, CD Baby, SongTrust And FUGA Back DotBlockchain
The dotBlockchain Music Project (dotBC), which aims to solve data, rights, ownership and payment issues in the music industry, has won backing from SOCAN and subsidiary MediaNet, plus Songtrust, CDBaby and FUGA. The partners will contribute technical and financial resources to the project, which will allow dotBC to accelerate its product development efforts.
Other Music News Highlights
ESPN Reaches Settlement in Music Licensing Dispute. The deal resolves a rate-setting proceeding that ESPN initiated a year ago when it sued BMI for allegedly not being reasonable in licensing negotiations.
Netflix Taps BMG for Music Publishing Rights Outside U.S. The exclusive agreement covers elements such as scores, featured songs, transition cues and themes for all Netflix-owned original programming, including TV series, docs and feature films.
Canada’s SOCAN Announces 8 Percent Growth in Revenue, Huge Jump in Streaming. “SOCAN’s work to lead the global transformation of music rights continues, benefitting music creators and publishers even more in terms of royalties identified, collected, and distributed in Canada and worldwide,” said CEO Eric Baptiste, in a statement.
Why Did Sprint Pay $200m For TIDAL? Now we know: because Sprint Corporation CEO Raul Marcelo Claure is using TIDAL as a “test case” to see if exclusive content can help close the gap on rivals like AT&T.
SoundExchange Pays Out Record $884 Million. The record comes amid uncertainty over how SoundExchange revenue will be affected by an increasing number of direct deals between digital broadcaster and rightsholders.
Report Claims Spotify IPO Could Slip Back To 2018. TechCrunch heard from multiple sources that the company is weighing a plan to delay an IPO until 2018 to build up a better balance sheet and work on shifting its business model to improve its margins.
Nielsen Completes Acquisition of Gracenote. With the deal, Nielsen significantly expands its footprint for data measurement via Gracenote’s global database and technology solutions that spans across multichannel video programming distributors, smart televisions, streaming music services, connected devices, media players and in-car infotainment systems.
RECAP: Music Piracy Costs Hundreds of Millions, SOCAN Releases New APIs, Spotify Gets Millions of DJ Mixes
Posted by Glen Sears | May 31, 2016 9:38 am | No Comments
Story of the Week
Music Piracy Costs Europe $190 Million a Year, EU Study Estimates
Music piracy has taken a small but noticeable bite out of potential profits for the recording industry throughout Europe, according to a new study by the European Union Intellectual Property Office. The report places an estimate on lost music sales in 19 EU states as a result of piracy in 2014, and comes up with a total of €170 million ($190 million), or 5.2 percent of all sales.
When broken down, that amounts to €113 million ($126 million) in lost digital sales and €57m ($63.5 million) in lost physical sales, the report finds. That’s the equivalent of 5.2 percent of the sector’s revenues from both physical and digital sales.
Two member states, Germany and the U.K., account for more than half of those losses. Europe’s biggest market, Germany lost €40 million ($44.5 million) in sales due to piracy, while the U.K. lost €49 million ($54.6 million). In France, where physical sales make up two-thirds of music sales, about €26.4 ($29 million) remained on the floor. And in the land of Spotify — Sweden — €8.9 million of the €9.1 million ($10 million) total lost was in digital formats.
Top Music News Stories
SOCAN Launches APIs to Drive Music Royalties Innovation. The first two APIs announced today are “Song Registration” and “Concert Notification,” which enable writers to use new workflow apps and software to register their songs more accurately with their music publishers, labels, digital services, and SOCAN.
Spotify Cuts Dubset Deal To Add Millions Of Mixes. The MixBANK deal makes it possible for DJs to upload and legally stream their mixes and single track remixes, and enable Spotify listeners to stream radio shows and other user generated mixes that have not been previously legally available to music fans.
Global Electronic Music Industry, Worth $7.1 Billion Last Year, Sees Growth Slow. While growth in the sector is slowing — up just 3.5 percent year-over-year, the smallest chunk of a 59 percent increase over the past three — the electronic field is echoing the larger trends of the global recorded music industry as reported by the IFPI earlier this year.
David Lowery and Melissa Ferrick’s Lawsuits Against Spotify Get Combined. The suits were essentially the same in purpose and aim, and now Judge Beverly Reid O’Connell of the Central District of California has granted a motion for them to be consolidated.
Pandora Stock Up 32% On Sale Rumors. No specific suitors have been named, but Pandora has said that it is open to the right merger or acquisition — Pandora’s market cap is currently $2.61 billion.
iHeartMedia Wins Court Case Over Stock Shuffle Designed to Deal with Its Massive Debt. As the San Antonio Express-News reports, Judge Cathleen Stryker ruled in favor of the media company, which was brought to court on the transfer of 100 million shares — valued at over $500 million — from Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings to another subsidiary, Broader Media, LLC.
Spotify’s Discover Weekly Logs 40M Listeners, 5B Tracks Streamed. Discover Weekly is also proving good for artists, with 8,000+ artists having added more than half of their listeners in the last month from Discover Weekly alone.
The Two Spotify Charts You Need To See. Rights and associated costs accounted for 83% of Spotify’s 2015 revenue, up from 81% in 2014, and this resulted in a dramatic fall in Spotify’s gross margin per user: down from $4.20 in 2013 to $3.45 in 2015.
Shamrock Capital Advisors Close $250 Million Fund To Invest In Music Publishing, Record Masters, Other Intellectual Property. Shamrock Capital Advisors today announced the final closing of Entertainment IP Fund (EIP), a $250 million fund focused on acquiring or financing entertainment intellectual property rights including music publishing, recorded music masters, tv, film video games and other entertainment content.
Our best wishes for a great week! – MediaNet
Posted by Glen Sears | May 16, 2016 9:27 am | No Comments
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.”
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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