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Business News (more headlines) 04-07-2013

GEMA Pays Additional Royalties Based On TuneSat Broadcast Detection Data

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For the first-time ever, GEMA, Germany's performance royalty society, paid additional performance royalties to Munich-based publisher Intervox Production Music Publishing GmbH based on their submission of TuneSat broadcast detection data. TuneSat is the revolutionary audio fingerprinting technology that was launched in 2009 that monitors and reports on broadcast music usage worldwide. Intervox's windfall is a 1,000% (one-thousand per cent) return compared to their TuneSat subscription cost. "The industry is reaching a tipping point," said TuneSat's co-founders Scott Schreer and Chris Woods, "TuneSat pushes aside the outdated reporting processes of the past and makes accuracy, accountability and simplicity the new standard."

"For us composers, it's the dawning of a new era now that the use of music on TV can finally be properly registered and royalties paid fairly"
Since the advent of television, networks have paid negotiated "blanket licenses" to performance rights organizations (PROs) around the world to broadcast the music those societies represent. In general, PROs rely on manually created cue sheets submitted by the broadcasters, listing each piece of music used, its length, how often it's used and in which broadcast. Months to years later, the PRO then distributes those royalties to their members, the music rightsholders � but royalty payments from all PROs have historically suffered severe omissions and inaccuracies, supporting TuneSat's research showing that up to 80% of all music on Television is unreported or misreported.

In fact, US performing rights organization SESAC [http://bit.ly/sesac-tunesat] has been so impressed with TuneSat technology that it counts itself as a TuneSat client. "TuneSat has been an invaluable source for monitoring the SESAC repertoire on television and now websites," said Hunter Williams, Senior Vice President, Strategic Development/Distribution & Research Operations. "SESAC is proud to be the first PRO to partner with TuneSat and pay royalties on their detection data, and excited to see other PROs like GEMA starting to recognize the significance of TuneSat technology for streamlining royalty payments to its members."

Through its proprietary audio monitoring technology, TuneSat has significantly alleviated the challenges of detecting and reporting music performances. TuneSat's performance data is created automatically within an hour of the broadcast, thus logging the musical works that were actually used, thereby making the error-prone and tedious manual preparation of cue sheets obsolete. The resulting qualitative and quantitative improvement over the manual reporting process makes a more accurate, reliable, economical and more extensive music reporting possible. The best part is TuneSat is at work all day, all night, all year, for all rightsholders, from composers to publishers � record companies to film studios, the famous or soon to be famous.

In 2009, Intervox subscribed to TuneSat's monitoring service. TuneSat used its proprietary technology to digitally fingerprint close to 10,000 tracks. TuneSat ran those fingerprinted tracks against the TV broadcasts of all major German television channels and created a database listing each Intervox-owned musical work that was broadcast. In 2012, TuneSat created a comparison between its findings against GEMA's royalty statement for that period, and found a significant amount of unreported uses, versus what TuneSat detected. This "exception report" was now proof positive of how the music was actually used, including when, where, how, as well as a recording of the detected uses in broadcast. This prompted GEMA to revise the royalties due to Intervox and several of its composers to include the previously unpaid performances found by TuneSat. By doing so, to their credit, GEMA has ushered in a new phase of transparency between music makers, PROs and music users.

Martin Weinert, managing director and co-owner of Intervox Production Music stated: "Thanks to the close cooperation between GEMA, the TV stations, TuneSat and us as publishers, there is a foundation built to fairly reward the use of music on TV." Weinert continued, "The TuneSat software and their integration into the business processes of the music industry can change the industry. If the publishers and composers get the money that they deserve for their performance, much more investment can be made in this important creative sector and the competitiveness of German publishers and composers will be greatly improved."

"For us composers, it's the dawning of a new era now that the use of music on TV can finally be properly registered and royalties paid fairly," said Moritz Bintig, who composes and produces for Intervox. Bintig continued, "It's scary when you realize, based on TuneSat's lists, that often more than one third of music usages on German television are not billed correctly! We, the musicians, invest in instruments, artists and studio technology to deliver the music that TV channels want. Good to know that audio detection technology has made such progress that publisher complaints are successful based on TuneSat data."

"With this important development, I am confident we are well on our way to achieving greater transparency for all members of the music industry � the future is here now," said Martin Berger of TuneSat's German office.

"If you want to succeed as a musician in the new music business today, you must also have some business savvy. Selling or performing your music is one thing but effective administration is a whole other deal. I launched TuneSat in 2009 with our CEO Scott Schreer because industry standards on royalty payments needed to change and together we had the vision of how to accomplish that. We're thrilled to drive change in the music business, to help give musicians the ability to control their own destiny and contribute to their success in ways where 10 years ago would have been unheard of � without a technology like TuneSat. We're helping build a world where, as artists, Scott and I want to live." � Chris Woods, Co-Founder and COO of TuneSat.

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