CMU Digest

CMU Digest 12.11.18: Spotify, Google, CISAC, IP Rights Distribution Fund, AIF

By | Published on Monday 12 November 2018


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

Spotify put a new analytics tool for music publishers into beta. Called Spotify Publishing Analytics, it will allow publishers to track the performance of songs they control and songwriters they work with on the streaming platform, including on playlists. Part of the streaming firm’s efforts to placate the songwriting and publishing community, it will provide publishers with better access to the kind of data now routinely enjoyed by artists and labels, without said publisher having to build its own portal. [READ MORE]

Google published its latest report on how it combats piracy. It said that its efforts to demote piracy sites within Google Search were working and that it had out-performed targets set as part of a voluntary agreement with the UK government. It also bigged up YouTube’s Content ID. Google has spent over $100 million developing the rights management platform, the report said, and it is used by 9000 rights holders to deal with 98% of copyright issues on the video site. Those brags come as Google seeks to water down safe harbour reforms in the European Copyright Directive which will increase the copyright liabilities of sites like YouTube. [READ MORE]

CISAC reported that song right collecting societies around the world together collected 8.3 billion euros in 2017. This figure was in the annual stats pack from the global body for song-right-focused collective management organisations. Digital monies passing through the societies – which isn’t all the digital income paid to publishers and writers – was up 23.1% and topped a billion dollars for the first time. Though it still only accounted for only 15% of collections overall. CISAC said that it hoped safe harbour reform would help further grow the digital side of the business. [READ MORE]

A court in California allowed a lawsuit against the US-based IP Rights Distribution Fund to proceed. The Fund was set up by performer unions AFM and SAG-AFTRA to collect various royalties due to session musicians, including so called Performer Equitable Remuneration. Songwriter and producer Kevin Risto sued over a 2013 decision to have the Fund pay a 3% services fee to the two unions. The unions argued that the Fund’s governing document allows such fees to be paid, but the judge said Risto’s case – accusing the Fund’s trustees of breach of fiduciary duty – could nevertheless proceed. [READ MORE]

It was confirmed that independent festivals in the UK generated over a billion pounds for the UK economy between 2015 and 2017. The stat was included in a new report, produced in association with CMU Insights, celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Association Of Independent Festivals. The economic contribution made by indie festivals is increasing each year, with the average festival-goer spending more on accommodation, food and drink, and with businesses that surround any one festival’s site. [READ MORE]

The big deals from the last seven days in the music business…
• Universal signed a deal with African streaming firm Boomplay [INFO]
• Downtown acquired the Salli Isaak songs business [INFO]
• Transgressive expanded its alliance with Foals to publishing [INFO]
• Universal allied with LadBible on a new emerging talent series [INFO]
• Jake Gosling signed a deal with Absolute Label Services [INFO]

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