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Radio Facts: On December 18th, US District Court Judge Louis Stanton issued a ruling denying Pandora’s motion for summary judgment in the streaming music company’s rate court proceeding with bmi. Just three months ago, US District Court Judge Denise Cote granted a similar motion by Pandora in its rate court proceeding with ASCAP, on the grounds that “new media transmission” rights can only be withdrawn from ascap if a publisher resigns from ascap completely. But in yesterday’s ruling, Judge Stanton determined that, with the exception of “presently-existing licenses,” if a music publisher elects to withdraw “new media transmission” rights from BMI, those works are no longer “within BMI’s repertory, and it lacks the power to license them to any applicant, including Pandora.” This means that as existing licensing deals expire, bmi no longer has the right to represent publishers who have withdrawn new media rights for any purpose across all platforms. According to Judge Cote, publishers are “all in” unless they resign from ascap completely; conversely, Judge Stanton has decided that publishers are “all out” if they have withdrawn new media rights from bmi. In response to this latest ruling, ascap CEO John LoFrumento issued the following statement: "The Court’s recent decision in the BMI-Pandora case further demonstrates the need to review the decades-old consent decrees, which govern PRO licensing, to ensure they reflect the realities of today’s music landscape. Despite Pandora’s continued push to pay songwriters, composers and music publishers less than a fair market rate for use of their works, collective licensing remains the most effective and efficient way to encourage innovation and increase consumer choice in the marketplace while ensuring music creators are fairly compensated for their work. We firmly believe ascap is uniquely positioned to serve the needs of music creators and music licensees in the digital future. But we must bring the regulatory framework that governs how we do business up to pace with innovation that is revolutionizing the music landscape. A music licensing system that reflects advances in technology, changes in end-user behavior and an evolving competitive landscape will better serve all stakeholders. ascap is working to shape a future in which everyone wins – consumers, music delivery platforms and the songwriters, composers and music publishers who are the foundation of the music eco-system."
Radio Facts: "We're pleased to learn that Pandora is abandoning the Internet Radio Fairness Act, which would have deeply impacted the way artists and other creators are paid for digital radio plays. SoundExchange shares Pandora's frustration that not all platforms of radio play by the same rules, and that AM/ FM radio does not pay anything for the use of sound recordings. As we said when we testified before Congress ...
Crackle Launches Original Concert Series “Playing It Forward” with Surprise Street Performance John Legend
Radio Facts: Crackle, the multi-platform entertainment network, announced today the launch of its first original music series, “Playing It Forward,” presented by FedEx. The special street performance-style follow-doc is produced by Team Downey, an entertainment company founded by Robert Downey Jr. and Susan Downey, alongside veteran music producer/composer Tony Berg and Kevin Lake. The “Playing It Forward” music movement will showcase surprise street performances by some of the world’s biggest artists in unplanned, unexpected environments across the country benefiting music education and charities of the artists’ choice. The first episode will be available at https://www.crackle.com/c/playingitforward tonight, and features a surprise show by acclaimed singer and songwriter john legend. The Grammy Award-winning artist performed three fan favorites, “All of Me,” “Ordinary People,” and “Shine” to an unsuspecting and amazed crowd at the Culver City Town Plaza in Los Angeles. “Music is a shared passion among our viewers and we’re excited to open a door to some of the industry’s biggest artists, making them accessible to our audience—all while raising money and awareness for charity and music education,” said Executive Vice President of Digital Networks at Sony Pictures Television and GM of Crackle, Eric Berger. “’Playing it Forward’ is more than a concert series—it’s a movement that shows the value of music and a gift to fans around the world - we’re excited to kick it off with a surprise set from John Legend, to air across all U.S. Crackle platforms.” In addition to creating unforgettable content, “Playing It Forward” is committed to changing lives and supporting organizations dedicated to preserving music education. Through each episode of “Playing it Forward,” $100,000 will be donated to the charity of the artists’ choice. The first episode will benefit the Show Me Campaign, created by Legend, which works to break the cycle of poverty by giving children access to quality education through the promotion of scalable, proven solutions and programs. Additional unexpected performances from “Playing it Forward” will be announced at a later date. Fans can get more details and uncover clues to the next performance by visiting https://www.crackle.com/c/playingitforward and following Crackle on Facebook and Twitter at facebook.com/crackle and twitter.com/crackle.