A staff attorney at Public Knowledge named Jodie Griffin has posted a detailed examination of all the provisions of the Internet Radio Fairness Act, including the necessary background concerning the Copyright Act, the CRB, and the matter of the two key legal standards the CRB uses in determining digital performance royalty rates.
The Internet Radio Fairness Act is a bill in both houses of Congress to create a more level playing field for Internet radio concerning sound recording royalties. It was introduced to the House by Reps. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) and Jared Polis (D-CO) and in the Senate by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) (more here).
Public Knowledge is a non-profit public interest group focusing on "intellectual property law, competition, and choice in the digital marketplace, and an open standards/end-to-end internet."
While most coverge of the IRFA (including this publication's) has focused on the bill's key provision -- that is, changing the rate-determination standard from "willing buyer/willing seller" to 801(b) -- the IRFA would make other changes to the royalty process for Internet radio (which industry expert David Oxenford has covered, more here). Griffin's article points out these additional provisions of the bill.
"The change from the willing buyer/willing seller standard to the 801(b) standard is widely anticipated to significantly lower the royalty rates that online radio services pay," she writes. "There is also a substantial need here for more economic data and analysis to predict what practical impact this bill would have on consumers, artists, and online music services... The explanation of how this would actually impact the online music marketplace and artist revenues is tricky and deserves a post of its own, so I will leave that discussion for next week."
Griffin's article is on the Public Knowledge site here. A somewhat more detailed run-down, as well as a "redlined" excerpt of the copyright law, showing the bill's additions and deletions to the code, can be found here.