Culture

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
copyright, radio, royalties

Companies:
ascap, bmi



As If Performance Royalty Threat Wasn't Enough, ASCAP, BMI Want To Increase Radio Royalties

from the squeeze-squeeze-squeeze dept

While the RIAA keeps pushing and pushing for a performance tax for radio stations, it looks like ASCAP and BMI on the songwriter/composer side are apparently now looking to increase their existing tax on stations (via Michael Scott). As you probably know, right now, stations do pay royalties to ASCAP and BMI for the "performance right" on music they play on the radio, which gets distributed to the composers and songwriters. But performers don't get a royalty, as Congress recognized (correctly) that radio was free advertising for musicians. So, the first battle is about adding another tax, but this newer battle would be about increasing the existing one.

Again, this shouldn't be a surprise. As we've been detailing lately, ASCAP, BMI and other similar groups around the world have gone on something of a rampage lately, trying to get larger and larger fees from just about any use of music -- including ringtones, the 30-second previews on iTunes, and YouTube videos embedded in blogs (despite the fact that YouTube already pays a fee). Sucks to be a terrestrial radio station these days. Not only do you have a ton of new competition from other sources, but the rest of the industry is looking to tax you until you're gone.

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 12 Oct 2009 @ 6:29pm

    I noticed something, a very interesting trick of words:

    "looking to increase their existing tax on stations"

    There is no tax. The use of the word tax is done to create a negative concept of what the fees are about. They are not a tax. Only the government can collect taxes. Nobody else can create a tax. They create a fee structure, a rate table.

    Taxes are NOT optional. Rates are optional - a station can go to an all talk format and not use any music, and not have to pay a fee. However, no matter what the station does, they will have to pay a property tax, etc.

    Tax. Sneaky word.

    Sort of like this:

    http://www.stopthetvtax.ca/

    It's not a tax.

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