Court sets ASCAP royalty fees


Following a federal court decision Wednesday, three major online services will pay an organization representing songwriters royalties of 2.5% of their music-related revenues for music streamed via the Internet between 2002 and 2009.

Under the terms of the order, Yahoo, AOL and RealNetworks Inc. could collectively owe up to 100 million to ASCAP, reported WSJ.

Terrestrial radio broadcasters pay ASCAP less than 2% of their revenue for similar licenses; the ruling said it was appropriate to charge online broadcasters more because they typically play more songs per hour than traditional radio stations.

The decision covers license fees for periods starting as far back as July 1, 2002, and continuing through December 31, 2009, for the performance of musical works in the ASCAP repertory.