A Rep. Jay Inslee bill (H.R. 7084) to prevent a dramatic increase on the fees that Internet radio sites like Pandora pay to the recording industry passed the House today.
Back in 2007, the federal Copyright Royalty Board passed a ruling raising the fees that webacsters had to pay—the rates would have gone up by as much as 300 percent, which would have crashed Internet radio.
SoundExchange, the group that collects the fees, said they were willing to negotiate lower rates, but any deal like that would have had no authority in light of the CRB ruling, which means SoundExchange always had the upper hand in the negotiations, and ultimately, could have collected the steep fees.
The effect of today’s vote, which passed unanimously on a voice vote, is to table the CRB ruling and give authority to any future deal that is struck between the recording industry and webcasters.
For background on the story go to SaveInternetRadio.org