Post Tagged with: "pandora"

The Battle Over Tariff 8: What the Recording Industry Isn’t Saying About Canada’s Internet Streaming Royalties

The Battle Over Tariff 8: What the Recording Industry Isn’t Saying About Canada’s Internet Streaming Royalties

Over the past month, Music Canada, the lead lobby group for the Canadian recording industry, has launched a social media campaign criticizing a recent Copyright Board of Canada decision that set some of the fees for Internet music streaming companies such as Pandora. The long-overdue decision seemingly paves the way for new online music services to enter the Canadian market, yet the industry is furious about rates it claims are among the worst in the world.

The Federal Court of Appeal will review the decision, but the industry has managed to get many musicians and music labels worked up over rates it labels 10 percent of nothing. While the Copyright Board has more than its fair share of faults, a closer examination of the Internet music streaming decision suggests that this is not one of them.

The Music Canada claim, which is supported by Re:Sound (the copyright collective that was seeking a tariff or fee for music streaming), is that the Canadian rates are only 10 percent of the equivalent rate in the United States. That has led to suggestions that decision devalues music and imperils artists’ livelihood.

My weekly technology law column (Toronto Star version, homepage version) argues the reality is far more complex.

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July 29, 2014 6 comments Columns
The Copyright Board of Canada Music Streaming Decision: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The Copyright Board of Canada Music Streaming Decision: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The Copyright Board of Canada issued its long-awaited music streaming decision late last week, setting royalties to be paid by Internet music streaming services such as Pandora for non-interactive and semi-interactive streaming for the years 2009 to 2012. This covers passive Internet radio services and services that allow users to influence what they listen to. Given that Pandora left the Canadian market over high tariff rates, the outcome of the decision was destined to be a key determinant over whether many of the missing Internet music streaming services enter the Canadian market.

For fans of Pandora or similar services, the decision brings good news. The board largely rejected the arguments of Re:Sound, the collective responsible for the tariff and settled on rates close to what the Internet services were seeking. While the collective argued for rates similar to those found in the U.S., the Board ruled that the U.S. was not a suitable comparison. 

Moreover, it rejected arguments that this form of music streaming cannibalizes music sales, concluding that exposure to music through non-interactive and semi-interactive streaming may increase sales:

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May 21, 2014 4 comments News

Pandora: High Costs Keeping Us Out of Canada

The National Post posts a letter from Pandora’s Tim Westergren, in which he notes that: “I think it’s very important that Canadian listeners understand that Pandora is eager to launch in Canada, but the rates that have been proposed by the Canadian music rights societies are simply uneconomic.”

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March 1, 2011 3 comments Must Reads

Leaving Millions on the Table: Pandora and Canadian Music

Pandora, the popular U.S. online music service filed for an initial public offering last week, provided new insight into hugely popular company that spends millions of dollars in copyright royalties. Pandora users listened to a billion hours of music in the last three months of 2010. Given U.S. laws, the […]

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February 15, 2011 9 comments News

Why are U.S. Net Services Slow to Migrate North?

Appeared in the Toronto Star on October 10, 2010 as Why are U.S. Net Services Slow to Migrate North? Netflix, the popular online movie rental service, launched in Canada last month, providing consumers with the option to download an unlimited number of movies and television shows for a flat monthly […]

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October 11, 2010 Comments are Disabled Columns Archive