This is a
video of the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology hearing "The Future of
Audio" that was held in June. At the House Commerce Committee
hearing, such representatives included the Recording Industry Association of
America (RIAA) Chairman and CEO Cary Sherman concerning new technology and how it
affects music sales today. At the hearing in front of the House Commerce Committee
Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, Sherman testified that "CDs are no longer the primary format for the music business or the
primary way the industry generates revenues. Digital
is not just our future, it is our present. In 2004, the first year
the RIAA had any meaningful digital revenues, the industry earned a grand total of $190
million from digital services. Last year, the industry reached nearly $3.5
billion. Quite a
Sherman will describe many different models licensed by major music companies:
• You want DRM-free downloads? We’ve got that: iTunes, AmazonMP3, eMusic, 7digital.
• You want to pay a modest monthly fee for all the music you can ever listen to – on your computer or smart phone? We’ve got that: Rhapsody, Spotify, MOG, Rdio, Music Unlimited, rara.com, Zune Music Pass.
• You want free, ad-supported video and audio streaming? We’ve got that: Spotify, YouTube, Vevo, Myspace Music, AOLMusic.
• You want music bundled with your mobile phone? We’ve got that: Muve Music, Metro PCS/Rhapsody
• You want to store all your music in the cloud, so you can access it from wherever you might be? We’ve got that: iTunes Match, and more deals in the works.
• You want specialized digital radio services that offer you the niche kind of music you like to hear? We’ve got that: Pandora, SiriusXM, Last.fm, Yahoo!Music, AOLMusic, and over750 more such services.
• You want online simulcasts of AM/FM radio stations? That is available too: iHeartRadio, WJLK-FM 994.3 (The Point), KPWR-FM (Power 106), WXLC-FM (102.3 XLC), and over 750 more online radio.
Sherman will testify that the agreement announced last month
with the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA) and the Digital Media
Association (DiMA), setting mechanical royalty rates and standards on a slate of
new cutting-edge music business models, was a signal of a new focus of the
industry and organization:
We’re also working on
new industry-wide databases and royalty distribution systems to make royalty
payment functions more efficient; and licensing reform to update the statutory
mechanism for the old “mechanical” licensing system. We are intent on
working with our Internet and publishing partners to simplify and expedite the
The RIAA CEO pointed out that voluntary marketplace agreements
with so-called "intermediaries" in the Internet ecosystem as the strategy to
protect the rights of musicians, songwriters and labels:
The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) is the
trade organization that supports and promotes the creative and financial
vitality of the major music companies. Its members are the music labels that
comprise the most vibrant record industry in the world. RIAA® members create,
manufacture and/or distribute approximately 85% of all legitimate recorded music
produced and sold in the United States.