Following the weekend’s report that a licensing disagreement with publisher Sony/ATV nixed the planned launch of Apple’s new personal radio service, chairman and CEO Martin Bandier has been talking about the publisher’s stance. “All we are seeking is a fair and reasonable royalty for the writers and ourselves for digital performances,” he tells Billboard. “We think the songwriter is just as important as the master recording and should get a fair price… We are in favour for all new digital services, especially for a service being started by Apple, which already has a great track record as a partner.” The article alludes – as we noted earlier this week – to more battles ahead for every personal radio service, as Sony/ATV pulls its catalogue from BMI and ASCAP. The fact that Pandora only pays out 4% of its revenues in songwriter performance royalties, but 50% to labels for master rights licensing, shows why publishers are digging in their heels now ahead of any ‘iRadio’ launch from Apple.

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