At Long Last…Phonorecord III Adjustments…What to expect! – 11/15/23

| November 16, 2023 | 0 Comments



On November 15, 2023, a great turnout of members and guests of the Copyright Society of the South enjoyed lunch and a Phonorecords III update from Rick Marshall, Assistant General Counsel of The Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC).  The event was held at the headquarters of the Country Music Association (CMA) in Nashville, Tennessee.  Bill Colitre with MRI was unable to attend with Mr. Marshall as originally scheduled; Society Board Director Kent Draughon moderated in an interview-style format which was enjoyable and informative.

The Copyright Royalty Board has published their determination on Phonorecords III, which means songwriters, rights holders and publishers will begin to receive back royalties for on-demand digital streaming owed from 2018 – 2022.  The CRB announced a confirmation of the mechanical royalty rate increase from 10.5%  to 15.1%. As a next step on Phonorecords III digital service providers (DSPs) have six months to true-up their accountings under the now-finalized Phonorecords III rates. Outstanding payments by DSPs are due to the Mechanical Licensing Collective by February 2024. The MLC then needs several months to process after which this is then distributed.

The Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC) is a nonprofit organization designated by the U.S. Copyright Office pursuant to the historic Music Modernization Act of 2018. In January 2021, The MLC began administering blanket mechanical licenses to eligible streaming and download services (digital service providers or DSPs) in the United States. The MLC collects the royalties due under those licenses from the DSPs and pays songwriters, composers, lyricists, and music publishers.  The MLC has built a publicly accessible musical works database, as well as a portal that creators and music publishers can use to submit and maintain their musical works data. These tools help ensure that creators and music publishers are paid properly.  To learn more please visit The MLC’s official website here.

Detailed information regarding Phonorecords III can be found at the U.S. Federal Register website located here.


Members of the Copyright Society of the South board of directors welcome The MLC’s Rick Marshall to its November luncheon event.

L to R: Rick Marshall; Aaron Hartley; Christy Robinson; Colin Rushing; Marghie Evans (Chair); John Barker; Kent Draughon

The Copyright Society of the South was formed in 1988 in Nashville, Tennessee, consisting of music publishers, attorneys, music industry personnel, and academicians interested in the field of copyright law. Its mission is to provide a forum for study and discussion of domestic and international copyright law and other matters pertaining to the entertainment industry. It provides seminars, speakers, presentations, and the opportunity to present various points of view on subjects of interest to the membership. The Society refrains from taking a lobbying role or endorsing or sponsoring political positions or candidates.  The Society also offers a scholarship awards program for students majoring in copyright-related fields.

Members are accepted into the organization by board vote. If you are interested in joining the Copyright Society of the South please complete our membership application here, or send us an email to [email protected] .


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