Radio to pay royalties on streamed music: High Court

Commercial Radio Australia (CRA) has lost its long running legal battle with the music industry to exempt programs streamed over the internet from paying royalties to the Phonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA).

Over a period spanning four years CRA has consistently argued that a program simulcast online was effectively the same program as that broadcast on-air and should not attract a separate fee.

The PPCA insisted that the internet was a separate platform and should be subject to a separate licensing agreement and fee.

A Federal Court judgement in 2012 found in CRA’s favour, but this was overturned by the High Court earlier this year, following an appeal from PPCA.

Having now lost its appeal in the High Court it would seem that CRA has exhausted all legal avenues.

CRA CEO, Joan Warner had no comment on the matter.

PPCA CEO Dan Rosen said, “We have strongly argued that music streamed by radio stations on the web should be treated separately and is not a ‘broadcast’ as defined by the Copyright Act and Broadcasting Services Act.”

See radioinfo’s earlier in-depth coverage here.