Does ASCAP Decision Put Online Music Broadcasters On the Hook For $100M?

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Does ASCAP Decision Put Online Music Broadcasters On the Hook For $100M?

Thu May 01, 2008 @ 04:44PM PST

Posted by Eriq Gardner

Ascap_lit_20061207 ASCAP is crowing about a "historic decision" made in U.S. District Court in New York yesterday.

New York federal judge William Conner has established a loose formula that determines the royalties that online music broadcasters have to pay publishers. The decision will cover license fees all the way back to 2002 and continue to 2009, when new rates go into effect.

But the decision awards ASCAP about 2.5 percent of music-related revenue from that time, which potentially adds up to an astounding $100 million, or about $6 million to $8 million due from each of the major online broadcasters such as AOL, Yahoo, and RealNetworks.

The online broadcasters were quick to point out the formula is still loose and has not been ultimately decided yet. ""This is a long way from being over," RealNetworks general counsel Bob Kimball told Reuters.

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