Spotify, Amazon Win Redo Over Hiked Streaming Royalties

Law360 (August 12, 2020, 8:34 PM EDT) -- The D.C. Circuit said on Tuesday that the Copyright Royalty Board made procedural errors that "blindsided" Spotify and other streaming platforms, unsealing an Aug. 7 decision and explaining why it had overturned a ruling that ordered the services to pay substantially more to songwriters.

In last week's now-unsealed decision in favor of Spotify, Amazon, Google and Pandora, the court slammed the board for its failure to give notice of the "drastically modified" rates, which increased the amount that streaming services must pay in so-called mechanical royalties.

Because the change in rates was so "extreme," the court said the board was "duty-bound to...

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