Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Radio royalty rate finally settled

Just spied this on NZ Musician's website. The radio industry and music industry have been battling over radio royalty rates for some time - in the latest Real Groove magazine, IMNZ's Mark Kneebone suggested that the reason a proper review on NZ on Air had been held up was because of this  - see this interview transcript. The court case apparently wrapped up in October last year.

Now, NZ Musican reports that "Five years after negotiations began and almost a year after court hearings, the Copyright Tribunal has finally delivered its decision on a new radio broadcast royalty rate. The Tribunal has settled for a revised license fee of 3% (of annual gross station advertising revenue) predictably finding a middle path between the previous 1.75% and Phonographic Performances of NZ’s petition that the rate (payable by each commercial radio station to PPNZ) should be increased to 6%.

It was June 2009 when the Radio Broadcasters Association (RBA – representing the two respondents Radioworks and The Radio Network) and PPNZ squared off in an Auckland court in front of the three-member Copyright Tribunal to argue PPNZ’s proposed threefold hike of the radio play royalty rate. (For a full background read NZM’s April/May 2009 article ‘Debating The Value of Music’).

The Copyright Tribunal decision delivered on May 19th is for a revised 2.6% rate for 12 months from November 1st 2007 (when the previous license agreement expired), expanding to 3% for the remaining four years of a new five year term – which, allowing for the legal delays to date, will take the new license rate through until the end of June, 2014. The Tribunal decision also alters the existing broadcast royalty rate in regard to agency commissions and the simulcast royalty base and rate.

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