Google wanted to buy Michael Jackson’s $750m stake in Sony/ATV 

For many in the music business, the repercussions of Google being allowed to get near a 50% stake Sony/ATV would be deeply worrying. Sony/ATV manages 4m music copyrights written by the likes of The Beatles, Taylor Swift, Michael Jackson, Ed Sheeran, James Brown, Elvis Presley, Lauryn Hill, Oasis and Eminem.

Remember that those 4m copyrights are spread through countless recordings and, therefore, master rights deals with labels. That would have been the first headache for the likes of Universal Music Group.

Source: Google wanted to buy Michael Jackson’s $750m stake in Sony/ATV – Music Business Worldwide

Shamrock readies $250m acquisition fund – and eyes music rights 

Shamrock Capital Advisors has announced a new $250m fund focused on acquiring or financing entertainment IP – with music publishing and master rights firmly on its shopping list.

The Entertainment IP Fund will be spent on a “diverse group of assets that have been through their initial window of release”, which may also include movies, TV productions, video games and other content types.

Source: Shamrock readies $250m acquisition fund – and eyes music rights – Music Business Worldwide

Pan-European Licensing Hub ICE Strikes Deal With Google Play

Designed to enable faster, more cost efficient and simplified rights negotiations for digital music services operating in Europe, the licensing and royalty processing service collectively represents over 250,000 songwriters.

The organization bills itself as the world’s first integrated licensing and processing hub and claims to have the most comprehensive copyright database in Europe. It says it will process online music usage through a single matching engine that will eliminate “unnecessary processing” and significantly reduce disputed claims.

Source: Pan-European Licensing Hub ICE Strikes Deal With Google Play | Billboard

DistroKid Will Now Pay Everyone Who Worked On Your Song

DistroKid, one of the world’s leading digital distribution companies that gets artists and labels’ music into over 90 digital outlets (like Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, Tidal, Deezer, etc) will now directly pay revenue from your releases to anyone you want.

What does this mean? Your producer gets 3% of revenue from your most recent single? Before, you would have to download your sales reports every month, calculate the totals for the designated release and write your producer a check for 3% of that. Every month. You did a YouTube collaboration with 5 other artists? Now, instead of one person having to figure out the splits and paying each collaborator directly, DistroKid will do all the accounting, reporting and payments directly to each collaborator.

Source: DistroKid Will Now Pay Everyone Who Worked On Your Song

Rightscorp Revenue Plummets, Has ‘Substantial Doubts’ About Its Future

Anti-piracy firm Rightscorp is questioning its own viability after releasing some dismal first-quarter financial results. The company, which monitors and targets repeated copyright infringers with extralegal payment notices, reported an operating loss of $784,180 during the three months ended March 31, a slight improvement from the $930,000 loss a year earlier. Rightscorp only generated revenues of $68,283, a 78 percent drop from 2015 Q1’s $307,904, and its services accrued only $49,142 due to copyright holders — a third of the $153,952 gathered during the first three months of 2015.

“These and other factors raise substantial doubt about the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern,” the company said in its 10-Q report, which later listed possible reasons for the sharp drop in revenue. “Management believes that the decrease in revenues was due to: a) changes in the filesharing software intended to defeat detection of copyrights being illegally distributed, b) less forwarding of the Company’s notices by ISPs and c) the shutting down of some filesharing network infrastructure.”

Source: Rightscorp Revenue Plummets, Has ‘Substantial Doubts’ About Its Future | Billboard

Medianet, SOCAN, YouTube And The Kobalt Effect 

Sinscreen-shot-2016-03-22-at-16-56-17ce the demise of the long-running-but-never-launched Global Repertoire Database (GRD) there has been a lot of debate over what comes next for digital rights reporting. The songwriter class action suits in the US against Spotify are the natural outcome of more than one and a half decades of failing to deal with the forsaken mess that is compositional rights in the digital era.

The music industry needs a solution and now just like busses that never come, two arrive at once: Google’s Open Source Validation Tool for DDEX Standard (doesn’t sound too sexy I know, but bear with me on this one) and Canadian PRO (Performing Rights Organization) SOCAN has acquired Medianet essentially as a digital rights reporting play. So just what is going on in the world of digital rights reporting?

Source: Medianet, SOCAN, YouTube And The Kobalt Effect | Music Industry Blog

Report: New Euro law could put film, TV audiences at risk of substantial loss of content 

The report calculates that changes to copyright and other initiatives at the EU level could result in substantially lower levels of investment in TV and film content, with consumer welfare losses worth up to €9.3 billion. This, it said, would be a direct result of those consumers losing access to content they currently enjoy, being charged more, or being priced out completely. It further asserts that up to 48% less local TV content in certain genres and 37% less local film production would be produced, with the most marginal/risky content at particular risk of being dropped.

The report was launched with the support of a broad group of sponsors, including film and audiovisual producers, distributors, broadcasters, platforms and film agencies throughout Europe and across the world. The group urges the European Commission to re-think its proposals to erode the territorial exploitation of film and TV content and avoid any proposals or other initiatives that would undermine film and television licensing and financing, including the decision to license on an exclusive territorial basis.

Source: New Euro law claimed to be putting film, TV audiences at risk of substantial loss of content | Media Analysis | Business

ASCAP scraps exclusivity clauses as it settles for $1.75m with DoJ 

The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) has reached a $1.75m Settlement Agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice addressing two specific concerns raised during the Department’s ongoing review of the ASCAP Consent Decree.

Although ASCAP has admitted no wrongdoing, it has agreed to scrap exclusivity clauses in some historical agreements with members – while pointing out that such provisions have never been enforced.

Source: ASCAP scraps exclusivity clauses as it settles for $1.75m with DoJ – Music Business Worldwide

Evolution Of A Digital Broadcasting Giant: Pandora 

Pandora_appSince the CRB has raised the per-stream rate, it has made it harder for Pandora to survive.  Scaling for Pandora was anyway a double-edged sword, always requiring higher payments to rights holders. Initially, those right holders had agreed on easier rates to allow growth and, back then, the establishment of Pandora. But Internet radio is now well developed, and the majors are not as easy going. The collective licensing agreement with SoundExchange is practical for Pandora though unpalatable, and unless Pandora can offer other services for a discount, such as the promotion of new releases, little will change.

It is in this context that Pandora has revamped its Artist Marketing Platform to support a direct-to-fan business.11 Its AMPcast feature now allows artists to target their Pandora fans by sending them audio messages about local concert dates, album releases, and other ‘behind the scenes’ content. AMPcast also provides links for the purchase of both albums and concert tickets. This new tool could be a market changer, for it would make the online radio provider not just a distributor of recorded music but an active player in the live music space.

Source: Evolution Of A Digital Broadcasting Giant: Pandora – hypebot

Kobalt’s AMRA increases YouTube publishing payouts by 34% in EU 

During the first three months of administering Kobalt’s digital catalogue in Europe – in Q3 2015 and compared to the previous quarter – AMRA delivered a 26% increase in earnings from Spotify and a 34% increase in earnings from YouTube for Kobalt Music Publishing clients.

Combined, AMRA collected 28% more money from Spotify and YouTube in Europe during the period.

Source: Kobalt’s AMRA increases YouTube publishing payouts by 34% in EU – Music Business Worldwide

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