Pandora has signed a music rights deal with BMG as of September 11th, 2014. In an effort to secure a more favorable deal for the songwriters and copyright holders, the 4th largest publisher executed a direct deal with the most popular streaming service. In doing so, they bypassed the US Performing Rights Organizations BMI and ASCAP, who traditionally handle all licenses for digital performance royalties. These organizations are bound by government regulations and aged consent decrees. This deal follows Pandora's recent deal with Merlin, which allowed Pandora was able to negotiate direct deals with thousands of independent labels.