Ray Hair, International President of the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM), responded to the Copyright Royalty Board’s (CRB) decision setting webcasting rates for 2016 through 2020. Earlier this week the CRB ruled that the 2016 rate for nonsubscription services will be $0.0017 per performance and for subscription services will be $0.0022 per performance. Starting in 2017 the rates for both subscription and nonsubscription services will be adjusted according to the Consumer Price Index.
“This week’s decision by the CRB is a huge step backwards for musicians—who are already working harder than ever to be fairly paid and earn a living. Under the new rates, musicians’ income will flatline for the next five years. The CRB reduced the rate paid by broadcasters for their webcasting by more than 30% while these broadcasters pay nothing for their $17B terrestrial radio industry. It is unconscionable that the CRB gave these broadcasters a 30% discount for their webcasting business—while musicians, singers and artists are still not compensated when traditional AM/FM radio plays music.”