Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

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MBantle
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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by MBantle » Fri Dec 20, 2019 2:36 pm

Casey H wrote:
Fri Dec 20, 2019 1:05 pm
Please spread the word on social media. If you are on Twitter there is an exact tweet you can send. Also write your local representatives. If you don't know who they are or how to contact them: https://www.commoncause.org/find-your-r ... tive/addr/


Discovery networks (owner of many channels) is trying to screw us out of our music royalty income. Yup, a multi-billion dollar corporation with a CEO who gets a $120M salary wants to break the back of songwriters and composers who write music for the shows.

Please read below. If you are on Twitter, you can copy/paste the tweet. If not, please spread the word wherever you can and help. Thanks.

The Your Music Your Future community needs your help. Discovery Networks is planning to cut composer and songwriter income by 90% as of December 31st. Variety even called them out on it: https://bit.ly/2qZ423k So we’re rallying together to take ACTION to help stop them.

Action step: Here’s a tweet you can copy and paste:
Happy Holidays, composers! @Discovery Networks found a way to cut your income by 90%. RT if you want composers to be paid fairly. https://bit.ly/2qZ423k @Gold_Rush @DeadliestCatch @StreetOutlaws #DiscoveryGreed #yourmusicyourfuture @yrmusicyrfuture
Whatever you decide to tweet, please use the link (https://bit.ly/2qZ423k) and include the same hashtags (#DiscoveryGreed and #yourmusicyourfuture) for maximum impact!

Discovery is even pressuring composers to take the 90% cut going backwards for shows that are already on the air. The threat is that if they don’t take the deal, Discovery will strip these composers’ music out of all their existing shows (!), and the composers will never work with any of the networks again.
If we don’t take a stand, this practice will spread to other network groups and everyone will be paid much less money in the future—both composers and songwriters. And where will great composers come from when they can no longer make a living?
YMYF has signed up more than 6,400 composers. As a community, we have formidable power if everyone tweets. But we all need to take action.

Creator groups from around the world, inspired by Your Music Your Future, have pledged to tweet with us in support of composers. Please be sure to do your part!
Could not agree more! What is even more alarming are the consequences for those composers not based in the US: https://completemusicupdate.com/article ... -momentum/

Quoting from the aforementioned article:

"Technically, outside the US, most songwriters and composers would not be able to sign a deal that assigned the performing rights in their work to the library or producer, and/or which excluded the future payment of performing right royalties. Because most songwriters and composers will be a member of a collecting society and – in most countries – when writers join such a society they actually assign all their performing rights to that organisation. Which means those writers are not in a position to include any performing rights and/or to exclude future performing right payments in any deals they do with a music library or a TV, film, gaming or advertising company."

Cheers,
Matt

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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by jdstamper » Fri Dec 20, 2019 4:01 pm

DesireInspires wrote:
Fri Dec 20, 2019 11:57 am
jdstamper wrote:
Sat Dec 14, 2019 9:36 am
Will ASCAP, BMI and other PRO’s help to fight this?
Yes!

ASCAP statement: https://www.ascap.com/news-events/artic ... a5mETVJTU#

BMI statement: https://www.bmi.com/news/entry/bmis-pos ... y-networks

SESAC statement: https://www.sesac.com/#!/headlines/arti ... -composers
Thanks for posting these links :)
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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by Casey H » Sat Dec 21, 2019 7:29 am

My understanding is ASCAP and BMI are limited in what they can do to fight this because they are party to the original consent decrees which support direct licensing (*), outside the PRO system. At the time, a law was passed to prevent antitrust monopoly by the PROs. You'd have to research this more.

Direct licensing is legal and originally agreed to by ASCAP and BMI. However, it's come to be used in ways not positive for composers. I believe ASCAP and BMI are working to get the original consent decrees modified.

Caveat: I'm not an expert on this and welcome corrections.

(*) Discovery wants to go to a full direct licensing model where they would pay a small fee and there would be no performance royalties. Scripps network (Food Network, Travel, HGTV, etc) has already been doing this for many years and Discovery bought Scripps a few years ago. It's possible they would extend that Scripps model to all their channels.

:D Casey

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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by tresero » Sat Dec 21, 2019 10:13 am

Casey H wrote:
Sat Dec 21, 2019 7:29 am
My understanding is ASCAP and BMI are limited in what they can do to fight this because they are party to the original consent decrees which support direct licensing (*), outside the PRO system. At the time, a law was passed to prevent antitrust monopoly by the PROs. You'd have to research this more.

Direct licensing is legal and originally agreed to by ASCAP and BMI. However, it's come to be used in ways not positive for composers. I believe ASCAP and BMI are working to get the original consent decrees modified.

Caveat: I'm not an expert on this and welcome corrections.

(*) Discovery wants to go to a full direct licensing model where they would pay a small fee and there would be no performance royalties. Scripps network (Food Network, Travel, HGTV, etc) has already been doing this for many years and Discovery bought Scripps a few years ago. It's possible they would extend that Scripps model to all their channels.

:D Casey
I would say not only probable, almost guaranteed.

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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by jdstamper » Sat Dec 21, 2019 12:52 pm

Casey, Thanks for the update / insight about the PRO's. Let's hope they can do something in the long run, and not too late.

Meanwhile we should all make as many objections as possible.
Jim Stamper
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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by guscave » Mon Dec 23, 2019 8:18 am

Just found out from a library I work with that they were told by Discovery that they will not be implementing this new structure on previous shows and episode already released, but it still looks like they want to incorporated it with music added to shows after Jan 2020. So the fight continues... :x

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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by Casey H » Mon Dec 23, 2019 10:16 am

guscave wrote:
Mon Dec 23, 2019 8:18 am
Just found out from a library I work with that they were told by Discovery that they will not be implementing this new structure on previous shows and episode already released, but it still looks like they want to incorporated it with music added to shows after Jan 2020. So the fight continues... :x
Yea, I've been hearing that. My fear is it's like a freight train moving that can't be stopped. We have to keep raising our voices!

Casey

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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by MBantle » Thu Jan 02, 2020 2:17 pm

I was wondering whether any of you had the latest news in this matter. I checked online but could not find any update.
Cheers,
Matt

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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by SubRivers » Fri Jan 03, 2020 4:55 pm

MBantle wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 2:17 pm
I was wondering whether any of you had the latest news in this matter. I checked online but could not find any update.
Cheers,
Matt
Suspect Discovery is in keeping head down mode in the hope of riding out this "storm" until it becomes the new norm.

Which it seems it is already - I have many placements detected by Tunesat that never paid anything and the common denominator is clearly the channel involved.

So if HGTV pays nothing why should Discovery for the same music.

Why should MTV or CBS pay if Food Network is exempt.

Needs something more than words - needs libraries to stop supplying both good/bad broadcasters with the same music.

The channels that don't pay the PROs should only use music from composers that don't belong to PROs or have signed off PRO rights.

It shouldn't be possible to make a deal at some point in the chain that negates they rights of parties earlier in the chain.

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Re: Discovery Networks Corners Composers in Music Royalties Battle

Post by DesireInspires » Sat Jan 04, 2020 11:40 am

SubRivers wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 4:55 pm
MBantle wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 2:17 pm
I was wondering whether any of you had the latest news in this matter. I checked online but could not find any update.
Cheers,
Matt
Suspect Discovery is in keeping head down mode in the hope of riding out this "storm" until it becomes the new norm.

Which it seems it is already - I have many placements detected by Tunesat that never paid anything and the common denominator is clearly the channel involved.

So if HGTV pays nothing why should Discovery for the same music.

Why should MTV or CBS pay if Food Network is exempt.

Needs something more than words - needs libraries to stop supplying both good/bad broadcasters with the same music.

The channels that don't pay the PROs should only use music from composers that don't belong to PROs or have signed off PRO rights.

It shouldn't be possible to make a deal at some point in the chain that negates they rights of parties earlier in the chain.
Some of these music libraries are incredibly shortsighted in regards to doing proper business. They give away access to their catalogs for a handful of magic beans. I hope to see some of these companies with terrible deals for composers go out of business this year. Some consolidation and correction is needed at this point.

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