US mechanicals deal brings cloud clarity for publishers


There is more clarity on what the next set of US mechanical royalty rates for digital music may look like, after music industry bodies the RIAA and NMPA struck a deal with the Digital Media Association (DiMA) which will now be taken to the US Copyright Royalty Board for approval. Current rates for downloads, ringtones and streaming services will remain in place, but five new rates have been proposed for new kinds of services, setting out how publishers will benefit. That includes two rates for cloud lockers, with publishers to get a mechanical rate of 12% of revenue, 20.65% of content cost or 17 cents per subscriber for paid lockers (whichever is greater), and 12% of revenue or 22% of the total cost of content for lockers where storage comes free with download purchases. There are also new rates for mixed bundle services, limited interactive services and CD/download bundles. The NMPA has hailed the total content cost stipulations as a big step forward for publishers to benefit from services’ label licensing deals. “If they get a better deal, we get a better deal,” boss David Israelite tells Billboard. 


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