×

Promo vs. payday

MTVi touts visibility in push for lower royalties

WASHINGTON — The recording biz said Tuesday that MTVi Group can well afford to pay a new royalty to artists and labels for music streamed on the Internet, and that the U.S. Copyright Office shouldn’t be suckered into thinking otherwise.

MTVi, the world’s leading Internet music company, with 22 sites, is among the Webcasters and broadcasters urging the copyright office to set a lower royalty rate than that proposed by the Recording Industry Assn. of America.

The two sides are battling it out before a three-member arbitration panel. MTVi Radio veep Brad Porteus testified Tuesday, saying there is a “powerful” promotional aspect to Internet streaming, and that this should be factored in when determining the royalty rate. He said some artists have “begged” to be included on MTVi sites, which include MTV.com, VH1.com and Radio SonicNet.

“Radio airtime has driven record sales for decades. The Internet is no different,” Porteus testified.

When it came time to question Porteus, attorneys for the RIAA pointed to press releases touting MTVi as the world’s leading streaming venture — in other words, stable and financially secure.

Deep-pocketed parent

Likewise, attorneys showed the arbitration panel other documents proclaiming Viacom, MTV’s parent company, as the world’s leading entertainment and media platform. MTV is majority owner of MTVi.

RIAA attorneys also submitted documents in which Porteus was quoted as saying that Internet radio sites are far less expensive to get up and running than traditional radio stations.

In debating the new royalty rate, Webcasters and broadcasters have argued that the Internet is a risky business, and hence, the rate should be lower to account for this.

More Digital

  • FaceApp is displayed on an iPhone,

    SAG-AFTRA Warns Members About FaceApp Terms of Use

    SAG-AFTRA is warning its 160,000 members about the “overreaching and invasive” terms of use for the FaceApp mobile application. FaceApp, developed by Russian company Wireless Lab, uses neural network technology to automatically generate transformations of faces in photographs. The app can be used to make users appear older, younger, or change gender. The terms include [...]

  • J. Cole

    Apple Music Launches 'Rap Life' Playlist

    Apple Music announced the launch of “Rap Life,” a new global playlist focusing on contemporary rap artists and culture. It replaces the former “The A-List: Hip-Hop” playlist. Said Ebro Darden, Apple Music’s Global Editorial Head of Hip-Hop and R&B: “We flipped it to dig deeper into into the lifestyle [and to] keep pushing the culture [...]

  • Billie Eilish

    ARRI, Mobile TV Group Back New Venture Revitalizing Streamed Concerts

    A new venture looking to bring a fresh approach to live-streaming concerts has gotten the backing of hardware heavyweights ARRI and Mobile TV Group. Wide+Close is launching with the mandate of shooting music performances with film cameras and cinematographers in order to give the content a more cinematic feel. “We want to take concert filming [...]

  • Fortnite Battle Royale

    How 'Fortnite' Fans Can Earn Loot by Watching YouTube Videos

    Epic Games and YouTube have teamed up with a special offer for “Fortnite” players — giving players of the popular battle-royale game rewards when they watch “Fortnite”-premiered content on the video platform. The catch: You have to watch at least 20 minutes of “Fortnite” special content or live esports broadcasts to receive the loot. Under [...]

  • Roku headquarters

    Roku Plans to Expand to Brazil, Other Countries (EXCLUSIVE)

    Roku plans to expand to multiple new territories in the coming months, Variety has learned. One of the first new markets for the company will likely be Brazil. An international expansion could help Roku grow its customer base, which in turn should lead to growing advertising revenues. Roku executives have been hinting at plans to [...]

  • Google Stadia Pro to Include 1

    Google’s Stadia Game Streaming Service to Include Free Monthly Game

    Google has been busy sharing additional details about its upcoming game streaming service Stadia, clearing up some confusion in the process. Stadia’s pro subscription tier, which will cost $10 per month, won’t be a Netflix-type subscription service. However, subscribers will get free games at the rate of about a title per month. That’s according to [...]

  • Crypt-TV-Facebook

    Facebook Signs Deal With Crypt TV for Slate of Five Horror Series

    Crypt TV, the digital studio founded by Eli Roth and Jack Davis and backed by Jason Blum, expanded its deal with Facebook, inking a content partnership to create a slate of five horror and monster-themed series exclusively for Facebook Watch. For Facebook Watch, it’s one of the first deals for a full slate of content [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content