Music to our ears: SoundExchange and webcasters reach compromise
A quick history less:
Earlier this year, the U.S. Copyright Royalty Board voted to raise rates for internet broadcasters. In some cases, the new rates could have cost billions of dollars, driving pretty much every online radio station out of business. After months of contentious debate, SoundExchange agreed last month not to enforce the new rates until some sort of compromise could be reached.
Today's compromise involves a $500 cap per channel, with a $50,000 overall cap per service.
Webcasters will have to provide SoundExchange with a detailed annual list of songs performed and the Digital Media Association will work with SoundExchange to "evaluate the issue of streamripping." Presumably that means the two organizations will try to find ways to prevent users from making permanent copies of streaming audio files.
The new fees could still be a bit steep for small time webcasters. But today's announcement should keep larger companies like Pandora, Yahoo! Launch, and Last.fm piping out plenty cups of steaming hot internet music.