BMI Launches Web-Based Electronic Music Reporting

Posted in News on March 19, 2000

NEW YORK, March 20, 2000 - BMI, the performing rights organization, today announced it would begin the nationwide roll-out of a new Internet-based music-use reporting system for the radio industry. Beginning in April, the system, known as "Electronic Music Reporting" or EMR, will be offered over the next year to all commercial radio stations licensed by BMI.

The new system permits stations to use existing playlist management software to generate music-use reports that are then uploaded to BMI's airplay data tank over a secure Internet connection. The electronic reports, which can be generated and uploaded in just a few minutes, eliminate the time and expense of completing and mailing a paper "music log," which has been the industry standard for more than 50 years.

"Radio stations can now save substantial time and expense by using BMI's automated music use reporting system," said John Shaker, Senior Vice President, Licensing. "The new web-based EMR system offers stations the opportunity to virtually automate their music use reporting to BMI. The EMR system will streamline our back-office operation, benefiting both BMI and our customers, but will not affect our sampling or royalty distribution systems."

BMI collects more than 400,000 hours of airplay data annually from music logs submitted by virtually every commercial radio station in the U.S., the largest, most comprehensive and accurate sample of radio airplay in the industry. The data sample forms the basis for BMI's payment of radio royalties to its more than 250,000 songwriters, composers and music publisher affiliates.

The new EMR system will be available to all stations reporting to BMI beginning in the second quarter of this year. It will use the same highly accurate statistical sampling methodology and reporting as the traditional music logs, which collect data from about 200 stations each week. Starting with stations reporting April 17, each station will be offered the opportunity to use the new EMR procedure or continue with the traditional paper logs. The initial mailing of EMR information will be made the week of March 27.

"At Bloomington Broadcasting we are committed to making a complete transition to digital operation, from what the public hears all the way back to day-to-day station management," said Bill McElveen, Bloomington Executive Vice President and Chairman of the NAB Radio Board. "Digital tools give us the opportunity to better serve our listeners and to make station operations more efficient to better serve our stockholders. BMI's new EMR system is a welcome building block in that process. We are looking forward to adopting it system wide."

BMI estimates that more than two-thirds of the U.S. radio industry uses a form of playlist management software that will tie in with the new BMI system. The company performed two rounds of highly-successful beta-testing during 1999 with dozens of stations in all radio formats.

"When we participated in the beta test for BMI's EMR system last year we were surprised how quickly our staff was able to produce and send the BMI reports. I can tell you this: at Nassau Broadcasting paper reporting logs are a thing of the past," said Dan Henrickson, Executive Vice President, Nassau Broadcasting Partners.

BMI's website,, will serve as the portal for the EMR system. A special secure radio industry sub-domain will accept the EMR reports. Instructions on using the EMR system will be enclosed in each station's music reporting packet.

The EMR system is a major component of BMI's Horizon Project, which encompasses 12 major programs designed to transform the company's relationships with its customers, songwriters and music publishers using a set of proprietary digital tools. In addition to the EMR program, the company recently announced a Digital Licensing Center, automating the licensing relationship with webcasters, and a new secure extranet permitting songwriters to register new works directly from their home PCs.

Founded in 1940, BMI is an American performing rights organization that represents more than 250,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers with a repertoire of more than 4.5 million musical works. The company collects license fees from the businesses that use music and distributes those fees as royalties back to the creators and copyright owners.

SOURCENews TAGS Licensing