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Musicians Lobbying Pandora To Join Performance Royalty Fight
December 2, 2013

Musicians' groups, including the RIAA, are now lobbying for Pandora to join them in the fight for a terrestrial radio performance royalty# The Hill reports that the two sides have joint interests in the push for performance royalties on AM and FM radio, as musicians want the fees enacted and Pandora wants to be on more of a level playing ground with terrestrial stations#

"We hope now that we can look forward as partners and work together to assure all creators are paid fair market value for the use of their works across all platforms," Mitch Glazier, Senior EVP of the RIAA told The Hill in a statement.

"We welcome them and have long said that it’s not fair that Pandora pays more," said Ted Kalo, Executive Director of the musicFirst Coalition, "but we want that equalized in the right way."

The Hill notes that while Pandora hasn't specifically said it would push for the performance royalty in the past, thought it has supported it at times. Last month, when Pandora announced it would abandon its quest for lower royalty rates, company co-founder Tim Westergren said Pandora "remains fully committed to benefiting and growing the entire music industry through a responsible/sustainable royalty structure and ensuring that artists can distribute their music and continue to be fairly compensated for their work and creativity."

A spokesperson for the NAB told The Hill that the organization will continue to fight against any proposed performance royalty, saying, "NAB will continue to make the case that local radio remains the number one vehicle for generating record sales and exposing new recording artists." The organization is also in favor of direct agreements between broadcasters and labels, such as the ones Clear Channel has been making. "We look forward to more marketplace agreements between radio companies and labels," the NAB spokesman said.

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Nick Petropoulos
Glassnote Entertainment

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