David D’Agostino’s answer to Are there any resources to read about licensing & Copyright issues involved in media services like Last.fm, Grooveshark etc.?

For interactive streaming services, content is licensed from the Sound Recording Copyright Owner (SRCO), these are "voluntary" licenses. For satellite or internet radio stations, "statutory" (or compulsory) rates apply.

The Harry Fox Agency (HFA) has information on digital licensing:

SoundExchange collects and distributes royalties from statutory licenses, including:

– Digital cable and satellite television services (Music Choice and Muzak)
– Non-interactive “webcasters” (including original programmers and
retransmissions of FCC-licensed radio stations by aggregators)
– Satellite radio services (XM and SIRIUS)


The Copyright Office has general information on copyrights:

The RIAA explains the differences between voluntary and statutory licenses here:

Voluntary License

Most of the time, licenses are granted voluntarily by copyright owners for a negotiated fee and pursuant to agreed upon terms and conditions. These are called voluntary (or direct) licenses. Licenses usually take the form of a written
contract that specifies the owner of the copyright, what rights are
being granted, the term of the license, and the royalties, if any, to be
paid the copyright owner…

. . . Offering a jukebox on the Internet. Interactive services do not
qualify for a statutory license. Instead, such operators must obtain
performance licenses from individual copyright owners, just like other
webcasting services. Interactive services include those that permit a
listener to choose a particular song and those that create a
personalized program for the listener. If copies were being made into the computer server, operators would need to negotiate reproduction
rights also.

Statutory Licenses

The U.S. Congress has determined that, in certain limited circumstances and for public policy reasons, the government should determine the terms, conditions, and rates for a limited class of copyright licenses. For example, such a government created license may enable licensees to avoid entering into separate negotiations with numerous individual copyright holders, and
thus create efficiencies that benefit society as a whole. Such licenses
are called statutory (or compulsory) licenses, and generally the fee in
such situations is paid according to a rate set by law, called a
"statutory rate."

In the music world, some types of performance and reproductions of sound recordings qualify for a statutory license. The most common type of use covered by these statutory licenses is for non-interactive webcasting or Internet radio. The sound recordings that you might hear through a satellite system in your car, or at home over your digital cable service, also are provided pursuant to a statutory license.

Are there any resources to read about licensing & Copyright issues involved in media services like Last.fm, Grooveshark etc.?

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