The idea that radio stations should pay recording artists and labels might not appear so controversial, especially not in those parts of the world where it’s been common practice for years. But in the US, where labels and recording artists get paid for digital usage but not conventional radio, it’s a matter of contention with only slow progress towards getting payment for offline broadcasts. This week the House Judiciary Committee approved proposed legislation, though there’s a long way to go before it makes the lawbooks. The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) is of course opposed to the bill, with NAB executive vice president Dennis Wharton commenting: “If the debate is about fairness to artists, why should the record labels get one penny from a performance tax on radio stations?”

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