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Copyright Office Seeks Comment on Compromise Proposal for Rules Governing Audits of Compulsory License Statements of Account

Seth A. Davidson
Arthur H. Harding
Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP - Washington Office

May 16, 2013

Previously published on May 2013

As part of the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act of 2010 Congress, Congress directed the Copyright Office “to issue regulations to provide for the confidential verification by copyright owners...of the information reported [by cable operators] on the semiannual statements of account filed for accounting periods beginning on or after January 1, 2010” for the purpose of “confirm[ing] the correctness of the calculations and royalty payments reported therein.” (A separate amendment directed the Office to adopt a verification provision for SOAs filed by DBS providers).

In June 2012, the Copyright Office (“Office”) initiated a rulemaking proceeding to implement STELA’s “audit” provision. After an initial round of comments, a group of interested stakeholders that included representatives of the major copyright owner groups, NCTA, and DirecTV (“Joint Stakeholders”) submitted a compromise audit proposal. The Office has now issued a new rulemaking notice soliciting comments on a revised set of rules that are modeled on the Joint Stakeholders proposal.

A detailed summary of the revised proposal is attached. Comments are due June 10, 2013; replies are due June 24, 2013.


The views expressed in this document are solely the views of the author and not Martindale-Hubbell. This document is intended for informational purposes only and is not legal advice or a substitute for consultation with a licensed legal professional in a particular case or circumstance.

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