Business News CMU Digest

CMU Digest 04.09.22: Streaming rates, Australian industry review, energy prices, Awesome Merchandise, Triller

By | Published on Sunday 4 September 2022

Music streaming services

The key stories from the last week in the music business…

The streaming services and US music publishers announced a deal on the royalty rate to be paid by the former to the latter. That rate is actually set in the US by the Copyright Royalty Board and the process was underway to decide what the streaming platforms should pay between 2023 and 2027. The publishers were pushing for 20% of each service’s revenue, while some services proposed something closer to 10%. The deal – which should stop the need for formal CRB proceedings – sets the new rate around the current rate of 15%.1, but with slight yearly increases up 15.35%. [READ MORE]

The Australian music industry responded to a new report on sexual harm, harassment and discrimination within the country’s music sector. The report was based on a survey of nearly 1300 music industry professionals, of which 55% had experienced some form of workplace sexual harassment or harm during their career – and of the women surveyed, it was 72%. Meanwhile, 76% said they had experienced some kind of workplace bullying. An open letter signed by numerous music companies and organisations stated “we acknowledge the harm documented by the review and we are sorry”, before committing to implement the recommendations in the report designed to address all the issues identified. [READ MORE]

Reps for the UK music and night-time industries warned that venues, studios and clubs will soon go out of business because of surging energy prices. Both UK Music and the Night Time Industries Association urged the incoming new British Prime Minister to urgently provide support for small to middle sized music companies that are seeing their average energy costs increase more than 300% – and in some cases much more than 300%. Without that support – the two organisations insisted – many venues, studios and clubs that just about survived the various shutdowns during the COVID pandemic could close down for good in the months ahead. [READ MORE]

The founder of merch firm Awesome Merchandise, Luke Hodson, updated his Crowdcube investors on what has happened to his business. The Awesome Merchandise company recently fell into administration, mainly because of challenges created by the COVID pandemic, with the music industry’s merch production requirements slumping when the live sector was in shutdown. As part of a so called pre-pack administration, Awesome’s assets have been sold to a new company set up by Hodson called Group Limited. That will save 94 jobs at the firm’s Leeds HQ and should reduce the impact on customers, though it means that those who invested in a 2018 Crowdcube crowd funding campaign to finance the expansion of Awesome, especially into the US, won’t get any money back. [READ MORE]

Sony Music sued Triller. It claims that the video-sharing app has failed to make payments due under its licensing deal with the major for months now. So much so, Sony has actually terminated that licence, but Triller has continued to make its music available via its app. Which means Triller is accused of copyright infringement as well as breach of contract. The Sony lawsuit follows the recent litigation filed by Timbaland and Swizz Beats who claim that they are still owed money from the sale of their livestreamed DJ battle format Verzuz to the digital firm. [READ MORE]

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