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May 3, 2007

Webcasters Get More Time to Resolve Royalty Controversy

The Copyright Royalty Board issued its final ruling on Tuesday (72 FR 24083), causing an extension to the time for when new royalty rates for Internet radio broadcasters goes into effect.  The original date was May 15th, based on the Board's March ruling, when higher rates retroactive to 2006 would have kicked in.  That was the day when many broadcasters would have shut their service down based on unaffordability of royalties.  The new date is July 15th due to the fact that the final ruling of the Board was issued in May.  Webcasters are required to pay 45 days after the end of the month when the rule is finalized.

House members Jay Islee and Don Manzullo introduced the Internet Radio Equality Act (H.R. 2060) on April 26th which would expressly overturn the decision of the Copyright Royalty Board and limit their ability to make such determinations in the future.  It wasn't clear whether Congress would move a bill in time to meet the May 15th deadline.  The bill is currently assigned to two committees in the House.  Reports indicate that Senators Ron Wyden and Sam Brownback would introduce a companion bill in the Senate. 

May 3, 2007 | Permalink


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