Digital copyright bill hits the Senate

Legislation is for artists' protection in digital sales

A bill amending the federal copyright act to protect performers’ income derived from digital music services was introduced in the Senate Tuesday and widely hailed by orgs representing recording artists.

The legislation, introduced by Sens. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), would require content protection measures in digital transmissions and provide platform parity in licensing measures that apply to digital music services.

The legislation also requires that uncertainties in the licensing of sound recordings for use on the Internet be resolved.

A judiciary hearing will be held this morning on parity, platform and protection issues. Among those scheduled to testify are recording artists Anita Baker and Todd Rundgren, Warner Music Group chairman-CEO Edgar Bronfman, and execs from XM Satellite Radio and Live365.

The American Federation of Musicians, the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, the Recording Academy and the Recording Artists’ Coalition endorsed the bill.

“The Feinstein legislation would guarantee that artists receive a fair market price for their music and would pave the way for the introduction of new and innovative Webcasting and radio services and programs, which will in turn benefit artists,” Recording Artists’ Coalition national director Rebecca Greenberg said.

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