At a time when major-label groups are struggling to defend and monetize their intellectual property, it helps that their chief advocate on Capitol Hill is a veteran IP attorney. RIAA chairman/CEO Cary Sherman spearheaded the trade group's negotiations with Internet service providers to reach a groundbreaking 2011 agreement to implement a graduated-response program to combat online piracy. He was pivotal in efforts to secure a $105 million settlement from LimeWire last year over copyright infringement damages. He's worked with White House copyright czar Victoria Espinel to draw up best practices for third-party intermediaries (like payment processors) to counter online piracy. And he played a key role in persuading the board of the National Assn. of Broadcasters to agree to the payment of performance royalties to labels and artists under certain conditions. When he was promoted to chairman/CEO in August 2011, Even Gigi Sohn, president of public interest advocacy group Public Knowledge, told Politico that Sherman was the best choice. "He knows the industry, knows the Hill-he's a consummate pro," Sohn said..
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