RIAA spend $658,000 on lobbying but should Sound Exchange be ‘lobbying’ at all?

September 2007

All areas

The Recording Industry Association of America spent more than $658,000 in the first half of 2007 to lobby the federal government, according to a disclosure form. The trade group lobbied on intellectual property and copyright issues, including more funding for enforcement, according to the form posted online Friday by the Senate’s public records office. Under 1995 federal law, lobbyists are required to disclose activities that could influence members of the executive and legislative branches. But in other news, it appears collection society Sound Exchange who collect for the erformaqnce of recorded music by way of interenet and satellite media has also spent money lobbying and PR as part of its musicFIRST campaign – and US commentators are now claiming that such activities are not permitted under the US Copyright Act. One lawyer added “t he lobbying efforts do exceed the legislative and regulatory authority given to SoundExchange. I also believe that the lobbying activity on a matter outside the scope of SoundExchange’s original charter constitutes a violation of the 501 (c) (6) tax-exemption held by SoundExchange“ saying that Sound Exchange should only be spending money on collecting, administering and distributing royalties from the use of recorded music. 17 USCA 114 (g) 3 appears to say that only (1) ‘reasonable’ costs in relation to collecting roualties and ; the costs of (2) the settlement of disputes relating to the collection and calculation of the royalties and the costs of; (3) the licensing and enforcement of rights with respect to the making of ephemeral recordings and performances subject to licensing under section 112 and this section, including those incurred in participating in negotiations or arbitration proceedings under section 112 and this section, except that all costs incurred relating to the section 112 ephemeral recordings right may only be deducted from the royalties received pursuant to section 112


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