The Library of Congress's decision on the CARP webcasting rates is up
The most significant difference between the CARP's determination and the Librarian's decision is that the Librarian has abandoned the CARP's two-tiered rate structure of 0.14c per performance for 'internet-only' transmissions and 0.07c for each retransmission of a performance in an AM/FM radio broadcast, and has decided that the rate of 0.07c will apply to both types of transmission. Some of the rates for noncommercial broadcasters have also been decreased, and the fee webcasters and broadcasters must pay for the making of ephemeral recordings has been reduced from 9% of the performance fees to 8.8%. The minimum payment for business establishment services was increased to $10,000.
So, the basic structure still stands, the webcasters are still charged huge back royalties,and they still don't have the freedom to offer interactive programming in any meaningful way. The logic of record companies of paying thousands to get airplay on the radio, but trying to extract thousands for wireplay on the net escapes me still. Here are the terms of the licence, which have lots of vague clauses about DRM type stuff that look as if they were deliberately written to be only settleable in court at great cost:
(v) the transmitting entity cooperates to prevent, to the extent feasible without imposing substantial costs or burdens, a transmission recipient or any other person or entity from automatically scanning the transmitting entity's transmissions alone or together with transmissions by other transmitting entities in order to select a particular sound recording to be transmitted to the transmission recipient, except that the requirement of this clause shall not apply to a satellite digital audio service that is in operation, or that is licensed by the Federal Communications Commission, on or before July 31, 1998;
Is this an Anti-TiVo clause?
(vi) the transmitting entity takes no affirmative steps to cause or induce the making of a phonorecord by the transmission recipient, and if the technology used by the transmitting entity enables the transmitting entity to limit the making by the transmission recipient of phonorecords of the transmission directly in a digital format, the transmitting entity sets such technology to limit such making of phonorecords to the extent permitted by such technology;
viii) the transmitting entity accommodates and does not interfere with the transmission of technical measures that are widely used by sound recording copyright owners to identify or protect copyrighted works, and that are technically feasible of being transmitted by the transmitting entity without imposing substantial costs on the transmitting entity or resulting in perceptible aural or visual degradation of the digital signal, except that the requirement of this clause shall not apply to a satellite digital audio service that is in operation, or that is licensed under the authority of the Federal Communications Commission, on or before July 31, 1998, to the extent that such service has designed, developed, or made commitments to procure equipment or technology that is not compatible with such technical measures before such technical measures are widely adopted by sound recording copyright owners;