#TBT Reflecting On Being Named A Billboard 2019 Digital Power Player And Looking To The Future Of Music Rights
Exactly one year ago, I was named a Billboard 2019 Digital Power Player in recognition of my work at the intersection of music rights and technology.
As the founder and CEO of two music rights software companies—TuneRegistry and RoyaltyClaim—I empowered independent music creators and rights-holders from over 40 countries with tools to protect and administer their copyrights in the United States and to uncover unclaimed royalties and music licenses around the world.
I started my career in the music industry as an independent artist and self-published songwriter, then evolved into an advocate of music creators as first an artist manager and eventually the owner/operator of an independent record label and independent music publishing company. Later, I pivoted from being hands-on the music to conceptualizing and developing technological solutions to address some of the challenges I faced while wearing the many hats that I had worn.
Today, I am writing yet another chapter in my career book as the Head of Third-Party Partnerships at The Mechanical Licensing Collective and as a Lecturer of Musicology (music industry entrepreneurship) at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. At these organizations I play a new role in supporting music creators from the earliest start of their careers through the legacy of their musical works.
As I reflect on my passion and look to the future I am excited to imagine how I can contribute in some meaningful way to the careers and livelihoods of thousands of music creators; especially independent artists and self-published songwriters.
Eron Bucciarelli (Soundstr), Dae Bogan (TuneRegistry & Royalty Claim), Benji Rogers (DotblockchainMedia & Pledge Music), and Jason Trikakis (HelloSugoi) Submit ‘How Tech Can Save the Music Industry’ Panel for SXSW 2018 – How To Vote Details
I’m excited to join fellow music tech founders Eron Bucciarelli (Soundstr), Benji Rogers (DotblockchainMedia), and Jason Trikakis (HelloSugoi) for a panel submission to SXSW 2018. Please vote and share the submission for “How Tech Can Save the Music Industry” #MusicTransparency
How Tech Can Save the Music Industry
The music industry is in dire need of change not only to thrive, but survive. Streaming, pirating and the secondary ticket market have dealt serious blows to our industry’s major revenue streams, but technology can be our savior. Join experts from the royalty, rights, ticketing and metadata blockchain sectors to learn not only how tech can provide short-term solutions, but also build a more sustainable industry. Join us to learn how tech can save the music industry. #MusicTransparency
- What are the current and near-future major issues of the industry that could be disrupted by technology?
- What solutions can tech offer and how can they be practically applied to our everyday lives?
- What is the long-term impact of these tech solutions? What happens without these solutions based on the current landscape of our industry?
- Eron Bucciarelli, CEO, Soundstr
- Dae Bogan, CEO, TuneRegistry & Royalty Claim
- Benji Rogers, CEO, Plege Music & dotBlockchain
- Jason Trikakis, CEO, HelloSugoi
As of this writing, there are currently 116,133 verifiable* payments owed to music creators and rights-holders that are sitting in unclaimed/undistributed royalties escrow accounts (referred to as “Black Box” funds**) in the United States.
The actual number of individual payments owed is likely closer to or exceeds 1 Million, however the actual number is unknown because the administrator(s) of some of the biggest Black Box funds have not made public their list of payees to whom they owe royalties.
Unfortunately, due to the statute of limitations on these funds many of these payments expire. Every month payees unknowingly forfeit their rights to these payments and the interest in the royalties revert back to the administrator. This happens because the payee does not contact the administrator of the fund to claim their royalties. Granted, most payees are unaware that these payments are waiting for them because the administrator is unable to reach the payee for various reasons.
It has been estimated that the global “Black Box” royalties could be in the billions of dollars owed to music creators and rights-holders.
Imagine working somewhere and then you do not receive a paycheck because the HR department does not have your new address. Not a perfect analogy, but not receiving monies that you’ve earned as a result of your hard work seems unfair.
THIS IS A HUGE PROBLEM
So, I am happy to announce that I am working on a side project called Royalty Claim. Royalty Claim will attempt to work with as many of these administrators to aggregate their databases of millions of records of unclaimed/undistributed royalties and make that information available to the public. There are other services and insight that we will offer through Royalty Claim to help educate music creators and rights-holders on Black Box funds and how to limit/prevent their earnings from falling victim to the broken global music licensing ecosystem (such as taking control of your music catalog with TuneRegistry).
Also, follow @RoyaltyClaim on Twitter.
* These 116,133 payments are specifically verifiable because the list of payee names can be gathered from several databases.
** I am currently aware of over 30 funds and sub funds being managed in the United States. However, there are definitely many more that are “private”.