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back to article Apple royalty skirmish ends in stalemate

Apple's fight against paying songwriters has ended in a stalemate today. The US Copyright Royalty Board rejected raising online royalty rates for song publishers — effectively ending Apple's threats that it would shut down iTunes if the song composer share was increased from 9 cents per song to 15 cents. The rate has now been …

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Jobs Horns

That ruling makes my decision for me

I will never seek to have my music sold on iTunes. APPLE and the RIAA aren't for the artists. They are for their own pockets. Who needs them. I'll sell my tunes online myself, without their nonsense. No thanks Apple. You can keep your iTunes Music store and your Jesus Phone.

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Jobs Halo

The real problem here

The greedy bastards in this equation are clear. 70c in $1 goes to the record labels... So what exactly are they doing for this big slice of the pie? Apple only seeing 30% which is actually a pretty reasonable markup on a retail product.

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Apple is not the villain here.

Apple is NOT a recording label! Those artists are paid by their *labels*, not directly by Apple. Those self-serving labels slurp up *70 percent* of each sale. Of that, less than a third ends up in their artists' hands. How is that *Apple's* fault?

Apple (and eMusic, etc.) invest a lot of money in their infrastructure: servers, bandwidth, graphic designers, copy-writers, online review moderators, etc., all have to be paid too. (And I doubt iTunes itself is cheap to develop.)

Why artists continue to grant online publishing rights to their labels I have no idea; any decent agent should have long-ago started negotiating directly with companies like Apple for online distribution rights. Let the record labels handle old-school media... and nothing else.

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What's that I hear?

Does it amuse me that the people who actually create the music are getting less than 10% of the money? No.

I know some good friends who are in the music business, they may make albums, they may make music videos. Never shall their pen grace the legal paper of the Recording Ass.

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Bluff

Like Apple was ever going to close iTunes... A win for common sense or a win for the corporate bully?

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Gold badge

Eh?

The whole row is about the producers trying to hike up royalty payments for digital downloads above the rate which they get for CDs etc..

They're making a special case about downloads. Why should they get more when you're giving the public less? (they don't get a physical item, the music is lossily compressed, no album cover).

When the music industry starts complaining that they don't get any money from the sale of iPods then you know something is seriously wrong (ie. they're being greedy).

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if itunes had closed

would all DRM'd tunes die?

Ok maybe you'd still be able to play them in your computer but moving them to your new machine etc?

Its only since the invention of the record player that money has been made from recordings, for the other 1000s of years in our history, the money was made from performance of music. Perhaps they were onto something as its hard to fake being on stage (unless you are hannah montana).

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@jeremy - correction...

"Its only since the invention of the record player that money has been made from recordings, for the other 1000s of years in our history, the money was made from performance of music."

While it (must) be true that "Its only since the invention of the record player that money has been made from recordings", in fact before record players (and phonographs) music was sold on paper rolls played by player-pianos and before that as music sheets - and that is how the PUBLISHERS of music came to be so important. The whole royalty/publishing situation stems from the way that in the "old days" the songs were literally "published" as a transcription of the tune along with the lyric.

When recorded music came a long, actual local talent playing music in a local venue was seen as under threat (surprise) the various means than were put in place to try and redress the balance and make sure artists got paid in recompense have ended up with the creation of Sony/BMG et als.

So something went wrong somewhere eh?!?

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Bronze badge

What?

This isn't a story about about a one-on-one grudge match between Steve Jobs and Prince Philip.

I feel completely cheated.

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Flame

Eric ....

.... your prejudicial slip is showing. WTF has the iPhone to do with this article? Maybe you meant all of that for another anti-Apple rant.

The story is about the Record Labels wanting to soak up even more $s for doing the same fuck all that they do in the case of digital music. All of the distribution, raising of fees and making payments is done by the likes of Apple and the other eMusic retailers.

Perhaps you would rather take a trip over to China/Korea/Taiwan to purchase your goods direct from the factories rather than pay retail price to the stinking shops and distributors?

One can only hope that your music is better than your understanding of (a) the story being told and (b) the reality of the music labels and their insatiable greed. Your vent is completely misdirected in this case.

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Paris Hilton

Hmmm

Hmmm , the big four record labels will not be very happy about paying out all that lovely lolly about the ring tones which previously got mysteriously reassigned as general revenue , so it is a good win indeed.

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No one to be sorry for here except for the artists.

Apple making 30%? That;s better than most retail stores

Label making 70c/$1 Seams like a killing

Sounds like the artists are getting a shit sandwich.. The sooner the big 4 go down the toilet the better off everyone will be - perhaps the artists will end up getting 50c/$1 then.

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@ Sean - get your facts right

"Why artists continue to grant online publishing rights to their labels I have no idea"

They don't.

Artists sign publishing deals with - hey, you may have heard of them - publishers. Often before they have signed a label deal.

If an artist signs a deal with a big publisher that is also owner by a label, it's because they think they're going to get the best return possible. What's wrong with that?

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@Danny

"The story is about the Record Labels wanting to soak up even more $s for doing the same fuck all that they do in the case of digital music."

Not this story.

The Copyright Tribunal case was being argued by the publishers, for the separate copyright of public performance. Do you know the difference, or do you just get your "facts" from Boing Boing?

Apple saw its chance to lower costs by f*cking over songwriters. And you sided with the people who want to f*ck over songwriters.

You're a real hero. Give yourself a medal.

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