Music Business Roundup: Songwriter Equity Act Reintroduced, ASCAP Reaches $1 Billion, and More

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

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Each week on Songwriter U, Songspace recaps the top stories in the world of music business. Here’s everything you need to know from the week ending on March 6th.

The Songwriter Equity Act Is Reintroduced
For the third time the Songwriter Equity Act, also known as the SEA, has been introduced to Congress in an effort to make updates to the Copyright Act. This move would help songwriters, composers, and music publishers get fair compensation for their works.
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ASCAP Reaches $1 Billion Revenue Milestone
The PRO has reached a historic milestone, as revenues topped $1 billion for 2014. The increase in revenue is due to a few factors, one being the increase in music streaming bringing in more royalties, and another being the fact that they identified over 500 billion performances of songs – double that of the previous year.
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Apple to Have Premium Only Streaming?
More rumors continue to surface about Apple’s soon-to-be-launched music streaming service. Now it appears that the service will get rid of the “freemium” model, instead requiring all users to pay around $7.99 a month for a subscription.  This is similar to Beats’ model which allowed users to try Beats for free but required payment after a certain time period.
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Royalty Insight From the “Blurred Lines” Trial
The somewhat controversial trial of Marvin Gaye vs. Robin Thicke, Pharell Williams, and T.I. over “Blurred Lines” offers some interesting insight into song royalties. An accounting statement from the trial states that the song earned about $16.6 million – with the majority of that going to Thicke and Williams. It was also determined the song had $6.9 million in overhead costs and generated $11 million in touring profits.
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Jay-Z’s Bid Is Not Yet Accepted
Some shareholders of WiMP and Tidal were reportedly unhappy with Jay-Z’s offer of $56 million, but since that announcement the chairman of the committee said that was false and the offer is still being considered.
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