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SoundExchange Lauds Turtles Victory

Michael Huppe: “all sound recordings have value”

SoundExchange is pleased with the news of a California court decision regarding music licensing copyrights.

A California District Court judge ruled in favor of the 1960s pop music duo The Turtles over SiriusXM for airing and streaming pre-1972 songs from the group. Songs from 1972 and before are not covered by federal music copyright laws.

Created by the record labels to collect and distribute music copyrights royalties for artists, SoundExchange President/CEO Michael Huppe said the verdict proves “all sound recordings have value, and all artists deserve to be paid fairly for the use of their music. It does not — and should not — matter whether these recordings are protected by state or federal law.”

Huppe adds: “While we are thrilled with The Turtles’ legal victory, it’s unfortunate that artists and labels were forced to pursue litigation just to receive fair payment for their art.”

SoundExchange supports congressional passage of to pass the RESPECT Act. The bill, introduced by Reps. George Holding (R-N.C.) and John Conyers (D-Mich.), would require digital radio services to pay royalties to pre-1972 artists when their music is played.

SiriusXM has not said anything publicly about the decision, however experts predict the satcaster will appeal.