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Published: 3/9/2015

SESAC Applauds Legislators for Introducing Songwriters Equity Act

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – SESAC, the nation’s most progressive performing rights organization, applauds Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)  and Representatives Doug Collins (R-Ga.) and Hakeem Jeffries (D- N.Y.) on the introduction of the Songwriters Equity Act. The legislation, introduced on March 4, modernizes sections 114 and 115 of the Copyright Act to achieve fairer royalty rates for songwriters. Representatives Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.), Tom Rooney (R-Fla.), Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.), Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Tony Cardenas (D-Calif.), Phil Roe (R-Tenn.) and Alan Lowenthal (D-Calif.) are original cosponsors of the House version.

"SESAC is grateful to Senators Hatch, Alexander, Corker and Whitehouse and Representatives Collins and Jeffries for their valuable time and crucial support on behalf of songwriters and publishers and their right to be fairly compensated for their intellectual properties,” said Pat Collins, president, SESAC Performing Rights. “SESAC remains vigilant in protecting the livelihoods of creators and is committed to the successful passage of the Songwriter Equity Act. This legislation will provide a more equitable and relevant compensation structure for songwriters, composers and publishers."

The Songwriter Equity Act, which updates legislation first enacted in 1909, addresses two important inequities under current copyright law that prevent songwriters and music publishers from being paid at the current fair market rate for their works. In addition to SESAC, the bill has broad support by organizations such as the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), National Music Publishers Association (NMPA), American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), and Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI).

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