BMI Files Action Against RMLC

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• January 3, 2017

rmlc-logoBMI has filed an action in Federal Rate Court today (Jan. 3) to set interim fees for radio stations represented by the Radio Music License Committee (RMLC) while BMI and the RMLC negotiate the terms of a new five-year deal beginning in 2017.

The RMLC has proposed an interim rate well below BMI’s previous deal, the effect of which would have a significant impact on the royalties BMI pays to its songwriters, composers and music publishers. The RMLC is said to have justified its proposed rate based upon “incomplete and incorrect information regarding BMI’s radio performances” according to a statement from the PRO. “BMI disagrees fundamentally with the RMLC’s proposal and, consistent with past practices, is asking the Court to maintain its most recent rate while new terms are negotiated,” the statement continued.

Mike Steinberg, Senior Vice President of Licensing for BMI, stated, “We attempted to negotiate in good faith with the RMLC for many months, and just before the end of the year, the RMLC presented an interim rate that significantly undervalues the work of BMI’s songwriters. Given the unmatched caliber of BMI’s repertoire, our superior market share on radio, and the ever-increasing value that BMI music brings to the radio industry across all its platforms, we believe the RMLC’s proposal falls well short of what is in the best interests of our affiliates.”

The decision comes after a Dec. 24 announcement that Global Music Rights (GMR) has agreed to an interim license with RMLC stations, through September 30, 2017, providing the newest PRO additional time to negotiate long-term licenses.

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Eric T. Parker oversees operations and contributes editorial for MusicRow's print magazine, MusicRow.com, the RowFax tip sheet and the MusicRow CountryBreakout chart. He also facilitates annual events for the enterprise, including MusicRow Awards, CountryBreakout Awards and the Rising Women on the Row. [email protected] @EricTParker

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