Looks like the iTunes Store won’t be shuttering its virtual doors after all. The Associated Press reported Thursday that the federal Copyright Royalty Board froze the royalty fees for songwriters on sales of CDs and digital downloads at its current $US9.1 cents-per-song rate for the next five years. The decision will come as a big relief to companies such as Apple that sell music.
The National Music Publishers’ Association—a trade group representing music publishers—had asked the Royalty Board to increase the rate to 15 cents per track. Such a hike, said Eddy Cue, Apple’s vice president of Internet Services, to Apple’s board last year, could have meant that the iTunes Store would lose money and have to close.
After the announcement, an Apple spokesperson told the Associated Press, “We’re pleased with the CRB’s decision to keep royalty rates stable.” The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) was also happy with the ruling.