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Archived updates for Thursday, February 21, 2008

Copyright Registrar Requires Seperate License Determination under Sections 112 and 114

The Register of Copyrights has concluded that in setting rates for the section 112 and 114 statutory licenses, the Copryight Royalty Judges must establish separate values for each of the two licenses and that rates for the section 112 license shall include a minimum fee.

The Copyright Royalty Judges are required by 17 U.S.C. 803(b) and 37 CFR 351 to issue determinations of rates and terms for royalty payments due for the public performance of sound recordings in certain digital transmissions by licensees in accordance with the provisions of 17 U.S.C. 114, and the making of certain ephemeral recordings by licensees in accordance with the provisions of 17 U.S.C. 112(e).

According to the Registrar,
The requirement in section 112(e)(4) to determine rates is logical in that the two licenses involve different rights. The section 112 statutory license applies to reproductions, while the section 114 statutory license applies to public performances. Moreover, the beneficiaries of the section 114 license are not identical to the beneficiaries of the section 112 license. Royalties collected under section 114 are paid to the performers and the copyright owners of the sound recordings, i.e., usually the record companies; whereas, the royalties collected pursuant to the section 112 license are not paid to performers. Without separate rates for both the section 114 and 112 licenses, SoundExchange is unable to allocate properly the funds it collects as the
Designated Agent and fulfill both its responsibility to distribute receipts to stakeholders of the public performance right under section 114(g) as well as its
responsibility to distribute receipts to separate stakeholders of the reproduction right under section 112.

Consequently, the Register finds that the Copyright Royalty Judges’ resolution to include rates for the section 112 license within rates and terms for the section 114, without specifying what percentage, if any, is attributable to the section 112 license, does not fulfill the Copyright Royalty Judges’ responsibility to determine the value of the section 112 license for ephemeral copies. Both the text and the legislative history of section 112 indicate Congress’ view that the rate setting body must determine the value of the section 112 license. See 17 U.S.C. 112(e)(3) (requiring reasonable rates and terms of royalty payments for the activities specified by paragraph (1) which
shall include a minimum fee for each type of service offered by transmitting
organizations); DMCA Conf. Rpt., 105–796, at 89–91; DMCA Section-by-Section
Analysis at 52–53, 61–62.
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April 06, 2009 11:45 PM  

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