Pandora wins appeals court ruling against songwriters society ASCAP

Features Associated Press

A federal appeals court has ruled in favor of Internet streaming service Pandora in a dispute with the songwriters rights society ASCAP.

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ASCAP — the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers — had been seeking to raise what Pandora pays songwriters. But because of its enormous clout, representing about half of all composers and publishers in the nation, the government has put conditions on its activities for decades.

On Wednesday, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York said ASCAP must still license its works to Pandora at a court-set rate.

Major music publishers EMI, Sony and Universal had sought a partial withdrawal from ASCAP so they could cut a direct deal with new media users like Pandora. The appeals court said they could not partially withdraw.