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Free Market Organizations Overwhelmingly Support the Music Modernization Act

13 June 2018

On the heels of unanimous passage of the Music Modernization Act in the U.S. House of Representatives, a coalition of free market organizations is renewing their support for the bill. This time urging the U.S. Senate to keep the momentum that started in the House going and modernize America’s antiquated music laws.

This is not new territory for free market, conservative organizations. These groups have long supported initiatives that not only protect music creators, but also allow them to promote their creations via platforms that keep up with digital and technological advances while getting government regulations and loopholes out of the way. More importantly, the organizations strongly support the Music Modernization Act as it relies on market principles to fairly compensate music creators.

For the sixteen organizations listed below that signed a letter to lawmakers in the House and now the Senate, the Music Modernization Act is long overdue:

  • Americans for Tax Reform


  • American Commitment


  • American Conservative Union


  • American Legislative Exchange Council


  • Center for Individual Freedom


  • Citizens Against Government Waste


  • Consumer Action for a Strong Economy


  • DigitalLiberty


  • FreedomWorks


  • Frontiers of Freedom


  • Institute for Policy Innovation


  • Less Government


  • Property Rights Alliance


  • Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council


  • National Taxpayers Union


  • Taxpayers Protection Alliance


  • Trade Alliance to Promote Prosperity

Their letter notes full support of the merits in the MMA. First, it brings U.S. music licensing into the 21st century:

The Music Modernization Act of 2017 creates a single licensing entity for all digital compositions. This rationalizes the digital music licensing process for both streaming entities and creators, so that distribution platforms can actually find the artists they want and need to compensate.

The ability to create and disseminate musical works has never been easier than it is now through digital formats. Creators should be able to use new technologies to spread their work without worrying about which medium provides the best compensation.  

The MMA removes a loophole in our copyright law that harms thousands of artists who recorded before 1972:

Under current copyright law, pre-1972 sound recordings are not given federal copyright protection. The MMA finally introduces protections for pre-1972 recordings by making unlicensed digital transmissions of these recordings illegal, and provides these recordings with the same licensing rules as later recordings. This brings parity for royalties for pre-1972 and later recordings.

The MMA has the support of the entire music community, internet companies and digital music services.  It is based on market principles and passed through the House without a single ‘no’ vote.


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