The Music Artists Coalition (MAC) and the Songwriters of North America (SONA) have filed a joint amicus brief urging the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold the Copyright Royalty Board's (CRB) royalty rate increase for copyright owners, the organizations announced Tuesday (Nov. 19). The brief urges the court to uphold the 2018 decision by the copyright royalty judges (CRJs) to award publishers and songwriters a 44% rate increase by 2022.
“For over a century, songwriters have been subject to a compulsory license, now embodied in section 115 of the Copyright Act, that determines the price to be paid for reproduction and distribution of the musical works they create,” the brief states. “There is no comparable example of a profession where the government sets the price for one’s labors.... After carefully weighing all of the evidence, the CRJs determined that songwriters should be paid more, and increased the rate for interactive streaming under section 115. Songwriters deserved that raise. Indeed, for some, the added income will be a critical factor in their ability to continue in their careers as professional songwriters.”