SoundExchange reaches Web royalties deal

From Bloomberg News

SoundExchange Inc., an organization that collects royalties for musicians and record companies, agreed with a group representing Internet broadcasters to cap fees at $50,000 a year per webcaster.

The webcasters agreed to provide the agency with full data on songs broadcast, according to statements from SoundExchange and the Digital Media Assn., which represents the Web radio companies.

The royalties are disbursed to the record labels and the artists. Talks continue on rates for each play of a song. Webcasters include large radio companies such as Clear Channel Communications Inc., technology companies such as RealNetworks Inc. and small Web-only operators such as Live365 Inc.

They had contended that royalty rates and minimum fees set by the U.S. Copyright Royalty Board in March were too high and in some cases might force them out of business.

The Copyright Royalty Board in March set rates ranging from 0.08 of a cent per song played this year to 0.19 of a cent in 2010.