Seattle Office of Film + Music


Artists and record labels have reached agreement with Internet radio companies over royalty rates, resolving a dispute that dates back more than two years over how to divvy up revenue from streaming music on the Web. The deal establishes a two-tier royalty payment system for companies — such as the popular service offered by Pandora — that broadcast music over the Internet. The agreement calls for large webcasters to pay artists and copyright owners a percentage of all U.S. revenue up to 25 percent or on a per-song basis, which ever is greater. Smaller webcasters — with revenue of less than $1.25 million — will pay a smaller percentage under a different formula. The agreement was announced Tuesday by SoundExchange, a nonprofit group designated by the U.S. Copyright Office to collect and distribute digital music royalties. The group’s members include large record companies such as Sony BMG and Warner Music Group, as well as more than 2,500 independent labels.

July 6, 2009, 1:03 pm
Filed under: Digital Media | Tags: , ,
Michael Jackson’s death continues to resonate in the world of online music as fans flock to the Web to purchase his music-and stream tons of it for free, often without many ads. That surge is seen as a boost to the fast-growing Web music sector (95 million unique users, per comScore). But it has also cast light on the segment’s nascent business model. On one end of the spectrum is the more established Internet radio format-which is built on radio-like audio ads. At the other end are the growing number of on-demand music sites, such as MySpace and Imeem, which offer users the ability to stream free playlists. That often happens while their eyes are focused on something other than a Web page-a potential problem for businesses built on visual display ads. But this downside for visual ads might be offset by branding potential. “Being associated with free Web music is attractive to a lot of brands”, said James Kiernan senior VP, group director, MediaVest USA. “Playlists have become currency in social networks,” he said. “Certain advertisers are drawn to that influencer equity.”
That more often means custom sponsorships, like brand-sponsored playlists, rather than radio-like audio ads. Kiernan believes that is the right approach. “This medium needs to be approached a little differently than radio.”

Teen music spending, P2P use drops
April 1, 2009, 4:31 pm
Filed under: Digital Media, Music | Tags: , , ,

Hollywood Reporter:
Teens are buying fewer downloads, using P2P less frequently and listening to more music streams, according to a new report by NPD Group. NPD found that CD purchasing declined by 26% in 2008 while download purchases fell 13%. In contrast, more than half of teens in the survey listened to online radio in 2008 (an increase from 38% in 2007) and downloading or streaming music on social networks rose to 46% from 26%. The share of teens that listened to satellite radio also increased.

YouTube-based Muziic hits the Web
March 10, 2009, 10:22 am
Filed under: Digital Media, Music | Tags: , , , ,

Hollywood Reporter:
Another free online music streaming service has hit the Web, with some questionable legal cover. Muziic is simply an iTunes-like interface that draws on YouTube for music content rather than licensing from the labels and publishers. But unlike most services that use YouTube as its content source, Muziic strips out the video to deliver only the audio stream instead. Such disaggregation of the audio from the video has been a point of contention by the music industry in the past, particularly over concerns that any ads included in the music video would get lost, meaning labels/publishers/artists would not get paid for the streams.

Public Broadcasters Agree To Web Music Royalties
January 23, 2009, 12:27 pm
Filed under: Digital Media, Music | Tags: , , , ,

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting and a group that collects royalties for artists and recording copyright owners said Thursday they’ve agreed on payment terms for streaming music online. The agreement between CPB and SoundExchange establishes the royalties that will be paid on behalf of the public radio system for streaming sound recordings on a variety of public radio Web sites from Jan. 1, 2005, through Dec. 31, 2010. The deal covers about 450 public radio Web sites including CPB-supported stations, National Public Radio, NPR members, National Federal of Community Broadcasters members, American Public Media, the Public Radio Exchange and Public Radio International.