Internet radio services like Pandora will have to pay more to artists and their representative groups, according to a decision released today by the Copyright Royalty (CRB). The basic per-song rates paid by Pandora will go from $.0014 per song, or 14 cents per 100 songs played, to $.0017. That's a nearly 20 percent increase.
The $.0017 rate will remain in effect for all of 2016 and then may increase according to the Consumer Price Index, a common measure of inflation, through 2020. At that point, the CRB will make another rate decision.
Today's decision resolves a long legal fight in which Pandora was asking to pay a lower rate of $.0011. SoundExchange, which distributes money to record labels and artists, wanted the rate to nearly double to $.0025 per stream.