Webcasting settlement craters

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The U.S. Copyright Office has rejected a proposed settlement on what royalty
fees radio broadcasters should pay record companies to stream copywritten songs
over the Internet.

Last month, radio broadcasters and the Recording Industry Association of
America submitted a settlement to the agency, which they asked it to adopt.

The two parties kept the agreed-upon royalty fee confidential, and they
wanted it to remain so until a panel of judges in February releases what the
final fees will be for some forms of streaming copyrighted music over the
Internet.

The agency placed certain conditions on allowing the fee to remain
confidential.

Both parties opposed the conditions, causing the Copyright Office to deny the
settlement.

Now, the radio broadcasters, the recording industry and Webcasters await a
decision from the Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panel Feb. 20 that will
determine the fees.

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