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The "Happy Birthday" Copyright Bombshell

Judge Denies Pandora Bid To Lower Royalties After Buying FM Station

Pandora-logoPandora has taken multiple tacts in its effort to lower the royalties it pays to musicians, labels, publishers and other rightsholders, including lawsuits, lobbying and even buying a small South Dakota FM radio station.  

image from www.allaccess.comLate yesterday  a New York federal court judge refused to to lower the royalty rate that he had previously ordered Pandor to pay BMI. Pandora had argued that its purchase of South Dakota radio station KMMZ 102.7 FM entitled it to pay the lower rate for over the air broadcasters who also offer streams.

U.S. District Court Judge Louis L. Stanton made the ruling quickly and "without explanation," according to Law360.  Under the judgement Pandora is required to continue to pay BMI a royalty of 2.5%.