As a songwriter, I'd like to make a living off of the work I do. I mean, it's not easy living the tortured life, right? Gettin' fired from day jobs, not having insurance, (hey, at least I got public medicine!!!), lyrics constantly beating down your brain....Could YOU keep up!?
So, part of the POTENTIAL income stream for creatives like me is via monies made from "music publishing." Music publishing is a quite complex area of knowledge dealing with Copyright Law (which itself a division of Intellectual Property Law).
LSS: As a songwriter, (and as my own "music publisher") I'm affiliated with ASCAP. They essentially collect monies (licensing fees) and distribute monies (via royalty payment).
ASCAP has paid me a total (as in "EVER," as in, "ALL of time") of $150.00 for ONE SONG. One song of mine. That one song was played somewhere on the internet. Enough times to generate $75.00 writer share and $75.00 publisher share.
Don't you know I was wildly ECSTATIC to get those monies for MY SONG??!! To me, THAT money somehow made it all worthwile to keep going...to keep living that glorious tortured life! ; )
Well, here, ASCAP has been lobbying in DC to get us songwriters and copyright holders ONE MORE PIECE OF INCOME POTENTIAL; a royalty stream from digital downloads (which, as we all know, are far more prevelant than are physical CD sales).
But oh no! Since many consumers have come to expect ALL music to be free (what's with bitches complaining about a NINETY NINE CENT DL PRICE???? Come clean my house. NOW!)
In the eyes of the law, a radio air play IS a "public performance" (copyright law) but not the digital download. Well. There it goes!
For further info, read here. And if you're an EFF devotee, don't EVEN go there w/ me. : D