Federal Judge Rejects DoJ 100% Licensing Decision
A Federal Rate Court Judge has ruled in favor of BMI, rejecting the U.S. Department of Justice's recent consent which included 100% song licensing. While the DoJ decision sent shockwaves through the industry, yesterday's was a cause for celebration.
A BMI Rate Court judge has ruled that fractional licensing of musical works is allowed under the consent decree that BMI operates under. The decision reverses a controversial Department of Justice ruling which called for 100% licensing of compositions.
“As we have said from the very beginning, we believed our consent decree allowed for the decades-long practice of fractional licensing and today we are gratified that Judge Stanton confirmed that belief,” stated BMI President & CEO Mike O’Neill in a statement released after the victory. “Our mission has always been to protect the interests of our songwriters, composers and publishers, and we feel we have done just that. Today’s decision is a victory for the entire music community.”
"This is terrific news for all of us in the songwriting community as we continue to work on modernizing the consent decrees to reflect the real world,” added ASCAP CEO Beth Matthews.
"Thanks to the courage of Mike O’Neil, BMI, and the entire songwriting and music publishing community, the DOJ’s disastrous views on 100% licensing have been rejected by a federal Judge,” said NMPA President & CEO David Israelite. “This is a huge win for songwriters and a huge win for the rule of copyright law.”