CMU Digest

CMU Digest 03.10.16: YouTube, SoundCloud, YouTube-mp3, MegaUpload, Sony v 19

By | Published on Monday 3 October 2016


The key stories from the last seven days in the music business…

YouTube announced it had hired former Universal Music and Warner Music exec Lyor Cohen as its new Global Head Of Music. Since leaving his role at Warner, Cohen has led his own music content company 300 which counted Google amongst one of its early backers. He joins YouTube in the wake of an increasingly vocal campaign led by the record industry establishment and heritage artists criticising the video site and its use of the safe harbours in copyright law. It remains to be seen if Cohen can build bridges between his new employer and its music industry critics. [READ MORE]

The Financial Times reported that Spotify was in advanced negotiations to buy SoundCloud, though the deal could as yet fall through. It’s long been believed SoundCloud needs a buyer to assure its long-term future, though – while its recent licensing deals make it a more attractive purchase – it is still arguably over-priced. For Spotify, SoundCloud would provide a large audience to sell its premium service too, plus could possibly replace Spotify’s existing free level. [READ MORE]

The US and UK record industries both announced legal battles against stream-ripping website The RIAA has already begun legal proceedings in California while the BPI in the UK says it will sue if YouTube-mp3 does not cease its activities. The record industry also urged search engines, app stores and advertisers to stop supporting or listing stream-ripping services. [READ MORE]

Closing arguments were delivered in Kim Dotcom’s extradition appeal. He and his former ex-colleagues at defunct file-transfer platform MegaUpload are fighting efforts to extradite them to the US to face charges of money laundering, racketeering and copyright infringement. There are still some technicalities to be dealt with before the judge decides whether or not to back the earlier court ruling that Dotcom et al should be extradited. [READ MORE]

A judge refused to give a summary judgement in the ongoing legal dispute between 19 Entertainment and Sony Music over streaming royalties. The judge said there was too much ambiguity in the major’s deals with the streaming platforms to reach a summary judgement which means the case could now proceed properly to court. The dispute centres on whether Sony should pay the former ‘American Idol’ winners 19 reps a lower sales or higher licence royalty on streaming income. [READ MORE]

The big deals from the last seven days in the music business…
• Global Entertainment partnered with Spirit Music Group [INFO]
• Ole bought Compact Media [INFO]
• PledgeMusic finalised its acquisition [INFO]
• Kobalt bought Fintage House’s music division [INFO]
• Rolling Stone sold a 49% stake to BandLab Technologies [INFO]
• Cooking Vinyl took equity in Fat Cat Records [INFO]
• Bucks Music partnered with producer Charlie Andrew’s new publishing venture [INFO]
• Katy Perry and Lionel Richie renewed agreements with ASCAP [INFO]
• Universal Music Publishing Australia signed Sons Of The East [INFO]

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