01 Dec 2010 Cases

DMX Rate Setting Litigations: BMI v. DMX and ASCAP v. DMX

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Compass Lexecon represented DMX in two separate rate setting litigations in connection with license fees for public performances of music from affiliates of the performing rights organization Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) and the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP). In a decision issued in July 2010, the BMI Rate Court set the blanket license at $18.91 per location, less than half of the fee that BMI requested, with the ability of DMX to further adjust downward the license fee based on the percentage of performances that are directly licensed. In a second decision issued in December 2010, the ASCAP Rate Court awarded DMX the rates that it sought from ASCAP, setting DMX’s blanket license fee at a rate that is substantially lower than the prevailing background music industry rate and providing DMX with an adjustable fee license structure so that DMX can further reduce its rates based on its direct licensing activity. Compass Lexecon expert Amy Candell in the Boston office provided written and oral testimony for DMX in both cases, with support from colleagues Nancy Bonn and Patrick Lavender. We worked with a team from Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP including Bruce Rich now of Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP and Benjamin Marks.

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