Dear Songwriter, Composer and Publisher,
I hope you’re doing well and enjoying your summer with friends and family. It’s been a busy quarter on our end, and I’m excited to report that BMI closed our fiscal year that ended June 30, 2022, on a very high note. I’m looking forward to sharing more details with you about that in the fall.
For now, I’d like to update you on several key developments. As you know, BMI will always fight to protect the fair value of your music. In June, the Radio Music License Committee (RMLC) filed an unprecedented joint action against BMI and ASCAP for rate determination from a single judge, relying on a gross mischaracterization of the Music Modernization Act (MMA). In response, BMI is leading the charge, as we always have, to champion the value of your creative work and are vigorously opposing this joint action on all fronts. Moving ahead, we are seeking to sever the BMI and ASCAP disputes from each other and look forward to establishing the significant value of the BMI repertoire to the radio industry before the BMI rate court.
On the legislative front, BMI endorsed a bill recently introduced in Congress by Representative Hank Johnson (D-GA), who sits on the House Judiciary Committee and is Chairman of the House IP Subcommittee. The legislation, named “The Restoring Artist Protection Act,” or “RAP Act,” would restrict the use of any form of creative or artistic expression from being used as evidence in trials. This follows on the heels of an effort to pass similar legislation in the New York State Legislature earlier this year. While that bill did pass the New York State Senate, it did not make its way through the New York State Assembly. We’ll keep you informed as the legislative process continues.
BMI also recently began an exciting partnership with Twitch on their incubator program for music creators called The Collective. This is a very promising opportunity for our affiliates, as BMI’s Creative team is working with Twitch’s music team to curate co-ops of creators based on complementary backgrounds, genres, and career stages as part of this initiative. Once creators are selected and complete the program, they’ll receive priority consideration for promotional opportunities and activations from Twitch, as well as Rolling Stone and Amazon Music. You can learn more about The Collective and how to apply here.
In addition to your quarterly royalties, this distribution includes annual payments for Theme Parks (Disney, Dollywood and Universal), Sports Leagues (NFL, NHL and MLB), and a number of individual PayPerView licensees, if your works had performances. This distribution also includes retro payments for Apple Fitness for all of 2021, and as a result of Fandango’s acquisition of VUDU, we’re including a larger retro payment for VUDU from third quarter 2018 through first quarter 2022, if applicable. Moreover, we’re pleased to share that we’ve consolidated BMI’s annual and previously stand-alone Live Orchestra distribution into this quarter’s payment, and it will be regularly included in our annual August distribution going forward.
In other news pertaining to your distributions, we’re in the process of extending our accrual policy to 12 quarters, meaning that your royalties will have three years rather than one year to accrue. This will allow more affiliates to reach the threshold and result in more affiliates receiving payments.
Last but certainly not least, I’d like to congratulate our affiliates who recently won well-deserved recognition: our inspiring BMI Christian Award winners, our outstanding Emmy nominees and Daytime Emmy winners and nominees, as well as our jazz legends who will be named 2023 NEA Jazz Masters. Kudos also go to country star Luke Combs, who gave a phenomenal performance in front of 8,000 fans to celebrate nine #1’s at the BMI Parking Lot Party in Nashville, our talented composers who shined during our first-time partnership with the Tribeca Film Festival, our incredible Latin affiliates who electrified the Sonidos showcase at LAMC, and finally, congratulations to all our amazing bands and songwriters who played the BMI Stage at Lollapalooza.
As we look forward to celebrating our BMI R&B/Hip-Hop Awards and Troubadour Awards in September, our London Awards in October, and our Country Dinner in November, I once again thank you for entrusting BMI with your terrific music and wish you a wonderful rest of your summer!
President and Chief Executive Officer