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News Article | May 22, 2017
Site: www.prweb.com

Today, Our Urgent Care celebrates the grand opening of its newest urgent care clinic in Washington, MO with a public ribbon cutting ceremony. Since opening over a month ago, Our Urgent Care Washington has enjoyed serving Franklin County residents by offering an alternative to the emergency room. The new Our Urgent Care walk-in clinic is located at 3195 Phoenix Center Dr., Washington, MO 63090 in Franklin County near Kohl’s Department Store just off Highway 100. “With six locations now open, Our Urgent Care is passionate about providing convenient and cost effective healthcare alternatives for the St. Louis Metro Area,” said Joseph Seibel, CFO of Our Urgent Care. “I personally know what it means to have a quality urgent care near me, and we are delighted to join and serve the growing Washington, Missouri community.” Our Urgent Care Washington opened its doors on April 17, 2017 to provide occupational medicine, x-ray, rapid lab testing, and immediate care for injuries and illness. Residents, workers, and visitors in Franklin County can make an appointment or walk-in to be seen during the hours of 8am to 8pm, 7 days per week. Our Urgent Care accepts most major insurances or patients are offered cash pay alternatives. Founded by five emergency room physicians who have more than 120 total years of experience, Our Urgent Care is a true alternative to hospital emergency rooms and other ‘chain’ or hospital-owned urgent care centers. The first location opened in Wentzville in 2006, and since then medical centers have opened in Saint Charles, Maryland Heights, Florissant and Richmond Heights. Our Urgent Care is an Urgent Care Association of America certified facility, with 20 highly trained, licensed providers who have extensive emergency department experience specializing in both general and pediatric care.


New York, NY, May 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The music industry has undergone a massive transformation over the past 20 years as consumers and corporations increasingly favor digital distribution over physical music mediums. Sergey Bludov, Senior Vice President, Media & Entertainment at DataArt has spent much of his career predicting how technology will change the music world, and these days, as CD sales dwindle and digital streaming services grow, he defines how music publishers and songwriters are paying the price. "They have to keep commodifying things to keep the share price up, but in doing so, they have made all content, including music and newspapers, worthless, in order to make their billions. And this is what we want?" - Thom Yorke, Radiohead Until 1998, digital rights were unregulated, resulting in publishers and songwriters receiving zero royalties for the use of their work on the internet, including downloads, audio streaming, video streaming, and satellite radio. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was implemented to prevent internet resources and platforms from continuing this practice, to ensure that copyright owners were paid for the use of their work in digital formats. At the same time, the infamously low rates paid by streaming services continue to threaten the livelihood of songwriters, as they receive a minuscule fraction of the royalties they earn from traditional radio, television, and physical music sales. The music streaming business has grown dramatically over the past few years, now passing the milestone of 100 million paying subscribers globally. Reports indicate that the U.S. music industry is on track to experience a second consecutive year of growth, which hasn't occurred since 1999. And this expansion shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, Goldman Sachs predicts that streaming revenues will almost double between now and 2020. However, the National Music Publishers' Association (NMPA) reports that for every $6 streaming companies pay to record labels, songwriters and publishers only receive approximately $1. Another massive complication in the fair distribution of digital royalties is the exploitation of the DMCA's "safe harbor" provisions. The concept is to protect online service providers from liability for copyright infringements by their website users, provided that they promptly remove content when a copyright owner informs them of infringement. However, many music industry experts believe that YouTube, one of the largest purveyors of on-demand digital music, evades paying fair market rates for the use of copyrighted content by exploiting the DMCA's safe harbor. According to a report by the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, market-based royalties for subscription-based services are approximately eight times higher than those paid by YouTube. Research indicates that music accounts for 40 percent of YouTube's views, clearly making it a vital component of its platform and advertising revenues. However, it appears that the music recording industry is losing out due to distortions in the market permitted by the current regulations. According to industry data, a subscription music service pays the recording industry approximately $0.008 per song play, while YouTube pays only about $0.001 for the same play. On-demand services like YouTube are taking advantage of safe harbor permissions to negotiate licenses at an unfairly low rate based on a split of advertising revenue, thereby treating music as a commodity and avoiding the fixed per-play royalties typically seen for streaming services. While it's encouraging to discover that the U.S. music industry is experiencing growth if artists aren't paid fairly for the use of their work on streaming services and other digital platforms, how can they earn a reasonable living that will enable them to continue creating music? Fortunately, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The U.S. Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) is currently determining details of the country's mechanical royalty rates for the next five years, and the global music community is joining together to rally for a positive outcome. As streaming increasingly becomes a primary method for the distribution of music, the results of these proceedings are crucial for rights owners. The NMPA, along with the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), are acting on behalf of a united music community in an attempt to increase the rates paid to artists by streaming services. On the other side, technology companies like Apple, Spotify, Google, and Pandora are presenting their arguments as to why these rates should be kept at such a low level. For streaming services, the NMPA and NSAI propose a determination based on a per-stream rate, or on a percentage of advertising/subscription revenues, or both. Following the completion of the hearings, the CRB has until December 15, 2017, to determine the rates that will be in place for the next five years. Pledging to work "to achieve better, fairer royalty rates for all songwriters and music publishers," the NMPA is asking the CRB "to adopt a structure that recognizes the inherent value of a song, the value of a subscriber's payment to access those songs, and all of the revenue that digital services generate from offering your music." The NMPA and NSAI urged songwriters to put their name on an open letter to the technology giants and big streaming platforms. "As songwriters, we count on you to deliver our music to the fans who love it," the letter says. "We appreciate the innovative platforms you have developed to do this. However we must voice our outrage at the way you are devaluing our work in the process. Currently, you are fighting to pay us as little as possible in the Copyright Royalty Board proceedings. This is alarming not only because it threatens our livelihoods and ability to continue our craft, but also because it tells us that instead of being our business partners, you choose to be our adversaries." Over 4,000 songwriters have signed the petition to the CRB, including Bruce Hornsby, Herb Alpert, Paula Cole and Desmond Child. It's clear that some corporations use music to attract consumers, but unfortunately, they remain reluctant to pay royalties to support the music industry. Although the digital revolution is helping large technology companies and streaming services thrive, the distribution of digital royalties remains complex, with rights owners being underpaid for their work. Although these industry realities may appear grim, fortunately, there are digital platforms and streaming services that are supportive of songwriters, making it essential to choose digital business partners wisely. Some of the publishing and distribution services that are known to help rights owners effectively track royalties and generate income include CD Baby, Kobalt, the Orchard and Tunecore, all of which are built on a model of transparency and fair rates for songwriters. And the success of the model is often determined by the technology behind it. The recorded music industry is becoming increasingly multifaceted as digital platforms and streaming services rapidly take over the market, and it is proving to be tough for regulators to effectively keep up with the evolving landscape. However, as the organizations representing songwriters bring the current data to the CRB to consider in their determination of future royalty rates, music creators can remain hopeful that the industry will be singing a merrier tune by the end of this year. Sergey Bludov is Senior Vice President of Media and Entertainment Practice at DataArt. In this role, he oversees key projects, manages major client relationships, plays an essential role in developing sales strategy and ensuring revenue growth. With extensive technical background and deep commitment to the media industry, Sergey shares innovative insights in various publications. In his 10 year career with DataArt, Sergey has held a variety of leadership positions, building exceptional client teams and ensuring immaculate execution and delivery of high-profile projects serving music technology, digital and book publishing services. Sergey earned his master of science degree in computer engineering from the prestigious National Aerospace University 'Kharkiv Aviation Institute' in Ukraine. DataArt is a global technology consultancy that designs, develops and supports unique software solutions, helping clients take their businesses forward. Recognized for their deep domain expertise and superior technical talent, DataArt teams create new products and modernize complex legacy systems that affect technology transformation in select industries. DataArt has earned the trust of some of the world’s leading brands and most discerning clients, including Nasdaq, S&P, United Technologies, oneworld Alliance, Ocado, artnet, Betfair, and skyscanner. Organized as a global network of technology services firms, DataArt brings together expertise of over 2,200 professionals in 20 locations in the US, Europe, and Latin America. A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/ed10cfab-bb0e-4dca-9489-0cb484f1de5b


New York, NY, May 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The music industry has undergone a massive transformation over the past 20 years as consumers and corporations increasingly favor digital distribution over physical music mediums. Sergey Bludov, Senior Vice President, Media & Entertainment at DataArt has spent much of his career predicting how technology will change the music world, and these days, as CD sales dwindle and digital streaming services grow, he defines how music publishers and songwriters are paying the price. "They have to keep commodifying things to keep the share price up, but in doing so, they have made all content, including music and newspapers, worthless, in order to make their billions. And this is what we want?" - Thom Yorke, Radiohead Until 1998, digital rights were unregulated, resulting in publishers and songwriters receiving zero royalties for the use of their work on the internet, including downloads, audio streaming, video streaming, and satellite radio. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was implemented to prevent internet resources and platforms from continuing this practice, to ensure that copyright owners were paid for the use of their work in digital formats. At the same time, the infamously low rates paid by streaming services continue to threaten the livelihood of songwriters, as they receive a minuscule fraction of the royalties they earn from traditional radio, television, and physical music sales. The music streaming business has grown dramatically over the past few years, now passing the milestone of 100 million paying subscribers globally. Reports indicate that the U.S. music industry is on track to experience a second consecutive year of growth, which hasn't occurred since 1999. And this expansion shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, Goldman Sachs predicts that streaming revenues will almost double between now and 2020. However, the National Music Publishers' Association (NMPA) reports that for every $6 streaming companies pay to record labels, songwriters and publishers only receive approximately $1. Another massive complication in the fair distribution of digital royalties is the exploitation of the DMCA's "safe harbor" provisions. The concept is to protect online service providers from liability for copyright infringements by their website users, provided that they promptly remove content when a copyright owner informs them of infringement. However, many music industry experts believe that YouTube, one of the largest purveyors of on-demand digital music, evades paying fair market rates for the use of copyrighted content by exploiting the DMCA's safe harbor. According to a report by the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, market-based royalties for subscription-based services are approximately eight times higher than those paid by YouTube. Research indicates that music accounts for 40 percent of YouTube's views, clearly making it a vital component of its platform and advertising revenues. However, it appears that the music recording industry is losing out due to distortions in the market permitted by the current regulations. According to industry data, a subscription music service pays the recording industry approximately $0.008 per song play, while YouTube pays only about $0.001 for the same play. On-demand services like YouTube are taking advantage of safe harbor permissions to negotiate licenses at an unfairly low rate based on a split of advertising revenue, thereby treating music as a commodity and avoiding the fixed per-play royalties typically seen for streaming services. While it's encouraging to discover that the U.S. music industry is experiencing growth if artists aren't paid fairly for the use of their work on streaming services and other digital platforms, how can they earn a reasonable living that will enable them to continue creating music? Fortunately, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The U.S. Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) is currently determining details of the country's mechanical royalty rates for the next five years, and the global music community is joining together to rally for a positive outcome. As streaming increasingly becomes a primary method for the distribution of music, the results of these proceedings are crucial for rights owners. The NMPA, along with the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), are acting on behalf of a united music community in an attempt to increase the rates paid to artists by streaming services. On the other side, technology companies like Apple, Spotify, Google, and Pandora are presenting their arguments as to why these rates should be kept at such a low level. For streaming services, the NMPA and NSAI propose a determination based on a per-stream rate, or on a percentage of advertising/subscription revenues, or both. Following the completion of the hearings, the CRB has until December 15, 2017, to determine the rates that will be in place for the next five years. Pledging to work "to achieve better, fairer royalty rates for all songwriters and music publishers," the NMPA is asking the CRB "to adopt a structure that recognizes the inherent value of a song, the value of a subscriber's payment to access those songs, and all of the revenue that digital services generate from offering your music." The NMPA and NSAI urged songwriters to put their name on an open letter to the technology giants and big streaming platforms. "As songwriters, we count on you to deliver our music to the fans who love it," the letter says. "We appreciate the innovative platforms you have developed to do this. However we must voice our outrage at the way you are devaluing our work in the process. Currently, you are fighting to pay us as little as possible in the Copyright Royalty Board proceedings. This is alarming not only because it threatens our livelihoods and ability to continue our craft, but also because it tells us that instead of being our business partners, you choose to be our adversaries." Over 4,000 songwriters have signed the petition to the CRB, including Bruce Hornsby, Herb Alpert, Paula Cole and Desmond Child. It's clear that some corporations use music to attract consumers, but unfortunately, they remain reluctant to pay royalties to support the music industry. Although the digital revolution is helping large technology companies and streaming services thrive, the distribution of digital royalties remains complex, with rights owners being underpaid for their work. Although these industry realities may appear grim, fortunately, there are digital platforms and streaming services that are supportive of songwriters, making it essential to choose digital business partners wisely. Some of the publishing and distribution services that are known to help rights owners effectively track royalties and generate income include CD Baby, Kobalt, the Orchard and Tunecore, all of which are built on a model of transparency and fair rates for songwriters. And the success of the model is often determined by the technology behind it. The recorded music industry is becoming increasingly multifaceted as digital platforms and streaming services rapidly take over the market, and it is proving to be tough for regulators to effectively keep up with the evolving landscape. However, as the organizations representing songwriters bring the current data to the CRB to consider in their determination of future royalty rates, music creators can remain hopeful that the industry will be singing a merrier tune by the end of this year. Sergey Bludov is Senior Vice President of Media and Entertainment Practice at DataArt. In this role, he oversees key projects, manages major client relationships, plays an essential role in developing sales strategy and ensuring revenue growth. With extensive technical background and deep commitment to the media industry, Sergey shares innovative insights in various publications. In his 10 year career with DataArt, Sergey has held a variety of leadership positions, building exceptional client teams and ensuring immaculate execution and delivery of high-profile projects serving music technology, digital and book publishing services. Sergey earned his master of science degree in computer engineering from the prestigious National Aerospace University 'Kharkiv Aviation Institute' in Ukraine. DataArt is a global technology consultancy that designs, develops and supports unique software solutions, helping clients take their businesses forward. Recognized for their deep domain expertise and superior technical talent, DataArt teams create new products and modernize complex legacy systems that affect technology transformation in select industries. DataArt has earned the trust of some of the world’s leading brands and most discerning clients, including Nasdaq, S&P, United Technologies, oneworld Alliance, Ocado, artnet, Betfair, and skyscanner. Organized as a global network of technology services firms, DataArt brings together expertise of over 2,200 professionals in 20 locations in the US, Europe, and Latin America. A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/ed10cfab-bb0e-4dca-9489-0cb484f1de5b


New York, NY, May 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The music industry has undergone a massive transformation over the past 20 years as consumers and corporations increasingly favor digital distribution over physical music mediums. Sergey Bludov, Senior Vice President, Media & Entertainment at DataArt has spent much of his career predicting how technology will change the music world, and these days, as CD sales dwindle and digital streaming services grow, he defines how music publishers and songwriters are paying the price. "They have to keep commodifying things to keep the share price up, but in doing so, they have made all content, including music and newspapers, worthless, in order to make their billions. And this is what we want?" - Thom Yorke, Radiohead Until 1998, digital rights were unregulated, resulting in publishers and songwriters receiving zero royalties for the use of their work on the internet, including downloads, audio streaming, video streaming, and satellite radio. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was implemented to prevent internet resources and platforms from continuing this practice, to ensure that copyright owners were paid for the use of their work in digital formats. At the same time, the infamously low rates paid by streaming services continue to threaten the livelihood of songwriters, as they receive a minuscule fraction of the royalties they earn from traditional radio, television, and physical music sales. The music streaming business has grown dramatically over the past few years, now passing the milestone of 100 million paying subscribers globally. Reports indicate that the U.S. music industry is on track to experience a second consecutive year of growth, which hasn't occurred since 1999. And this expansion shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, Goldman Sachs predicts that streaming revenues will almost double between now and 2020. However, the National Music Publishers' Association (NMPA) reports that for every $6 streaming companies pay to record labels, songwriters and publishers only receive approximately $1. Another massive complication in the fair distribution of digital royalties is the exploitation of the DMCA's "safe harbor" provisions. The concept is to protect online service providers from liability for copyright infringements by their website users, provided that they promptly remove content when a copyright owner informs them of infringement. However, many music industry experts believe that YouTube, one of the largest purveyors of on-demand digital music, evades paying fair market rates for the use of copyrighted content by exploiting the DMCA's safe harbor. According to a report by the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, market-based royalties for subscription-based services are approximately eight times higher than those paid by YouTube. Research indicates that music accounts for 40 percent of YouTube's views, clearly making it a vital component of its platform and advertising revenues. However, it appears that the music recording industry is losing out due to distortions in the market permitted by the current regulations. According to industry data, a subscription music service pays the recording industry approximately $0.008 per song play, while YouTube pays only about $0.001 for the same play. On-demand services like YouTube are taking advantage of safe harbor permissions to negotiate licenses at an unfairly low rate based on a split of advertising revenue, thereby treating music as a commodity and avoiding the fixed per-play royalties typically seen for streaming services. While it's encouraging to discover that the U.S. music industry is experiencing growth if artists aren't paid fairly for the use of their work on streaming services and other digital platforms, how can they earn a reasonable living that will enable them to continue creating music? Fortunately, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The U.S. Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) is currently determining details of the country's mechanical royalty rates for the next five years, and the global music community is joining together to rally for a positive outcome. As streaming increasingly becomes a primary method for the distribution of music, the results of these proceedings are crucial for rights owners. The NMPA, along with the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), are acting on behalf of a united music community in an attempt to increase the rates paid to artists by streaming services. On the other side, technology companies like Apple, Spotify, Google, and Pandora are presenting their arguments as to why these rates should be kept at such a low level. For streaming services, the NMPA and NSAI propose a determination based on a per-stream rate, or on a percentage of advertising/subscription revenues, or both. Following the completion of the hearings, the CRB has until December 15, 2017, to determine the rates that will be in place for the next five years. Pledging to work "to achieve better, fairer royalty rates for all songwriters and music publishers," the NMPA is asking the CRB "to adopt a structure that recognizes the inherent value of a song, the value of a subscriber's payment to access those songs, and all of the revenue that digital services generate from offering your music." The NMPA and NSAI urged songwriters to put their name on an open letter to the technology giants and big streaming platforms. "As songwriters, we count on you to deliver our music to the fans who love it," the letter says. "We appreciate the innovative platforms you have developed to do this. However we must voice our outrage at the way you are devaluing our work in the process. Currently, you are fighting to pay us as little as possible in the Copyright Royalty Board proceedings. This is alarming not only because it threatens our livelihoods and ability to continue our craft, but also because it tells us that instead of being our business partners, you choose to be our adversaries." Over 4,000 songwriters have signed the petition to the CRB, including Bruce Hornsby, Herb Alpert, Paula Cole and Desmond Child. It's clear that some corporations use music to attract consumers, but unfortunately, they remain reluctant to pay royalties to support the music industry. Although the digital revolution is helping large technology companies and streaming services thrive, the distribution of digital royalties remains complex, with rights owners being underpaid for their work. Although these industry realities may appear grim, fortunately, there are digital platforms and streaming services that are supportive of songwriters, making it essential to choose digital business partners wisely. Some of the publishing and distribution services that are known to help rights owners effectively track royalties and generate income include CD Baby, Kobalt, the Orchard and Tunecore, all of which are built on a model of transparency and fair rates for songwriters. And the success of the model is often determined by the technology behind it. The recorded music industry is becoming increasingly multifaceted as digital platforms and streaming services rapidly take over the market, and it is proving to be tough for regulators to effectively keep up with the evolving landscape. However, as the organizations representing songwriters bring the current data to the CRB to consider in their determination of future royalty rates, music creators can remain hopeful that the industry will be singing a merrier tune by the end of this year. Sergey Bludov is Senior Vice President of Media and Entertainment Practice at DataArt. In this role, he oversees key projects, manages major client relationships, plays an essential role in developing sales strategy and ensuring revenue growth. With extensive technical background and deep commitment to the media industry, Sergey shares innovative insights in various publications. In his 10 year career with DataArt, Sergey has held a variety of leadership positions, building exceptional client teams and ensuring immaculate execution and delivery of high-profile projects serving music technology, digital and book publishing services. Sergey earned his master of science degree in computer engineering from the prestigious National Aerospace University 'Kharkiv Aviation Institute' in Ukraine. DataArt is a global technology consultancy that designs, develops and supports unique software solutions, helping clients take their businesses forward. Recognized for their deep domain expertise and superior technical talent, DataArt teams create new products and modernize complex legacy systems that affect technology transformation in select industries. DataArt has earned the trust of some of the world’s leading brands and most discerning clients, including Nasdaq, S&P, United Technologies, oneworld Alliance, Ocado, artnet, Betfair, and skyscanner. Organized as a global network of technology services firms, DataArt brings together expertise of over 2,200 professionals in 20 locations in the US, Europe, and Latin America. A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/ed10cfab-bb0e-4dca-9489-0cb484f1de5b


New York, NY, May 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The music industry has undergone a massive transformation over the past 20 years as consumers and corporations increasingly favor digital distribution over physical music mediums. Sergey Bludov, Senior Vice President, Media & Entertainment at DataArt has spent much of his career predicting how technology will change the music world, and these days, as CD sales dwindle and digital streaming services grow, he defines how music publishers and songwriters are paying the price. "They have to keep commodifying things to keep the share price up, but in doing so, they have made all content, including music and newspapers, worthless, in order to make their billions. And this is what we want?" - Thom Yorke, Radiohead Until 1998, digital rights were unregulated, resulting in publishers and songwriters receiving zero royalties for the use of their work on the internet, including downloads, audio streaming, video streaming, and satellite radio. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was implemented to prevent internet resources and platforms from continuing this practice, to ensure that copyright owners were paid for the use of their work in digital formats. At the same time, the infamously low rates paid by streaming services continue to threaten the livelihood of songwriters, as they receive a minuscule fraction of the royalties they earn from traditional radio, television, and physical music sales. The music streaming business has grown dramatically over the past few years, now passing the milestone of 100 million paying subscribers globally. Reports indicate that the U.S. music industry is on track to experience a second consecutive year of growth, which hasn't occurred since 1999. And this expansion shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, Goldman Sachs predicts that streaming revenues will almost double between now and 2020. However, the National Music Publishers' Association (NMPA) reports that for every $6 streaming companies pay to record labels, songwriters and publishers only receive approximately $1. Another massive complication in the fair distribution of digital royalties is the exploitation of the DMCA's "safe harbor" provisions. The concept is to protect online service providers from liability for copyright infringements by their website users, provided that they promptly remove content when a copyright owner informs them of infringement. However, many music industry experts believe that YouTube, one of the largest purveyors of on-demand digital music, evades paying fair market rates for the use of copyrighted content by exploiting the DMCA's safe harbor. According to a report by the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, market-based royalties for subscription-based services are approximately eight times higher than those paid by YouTube. Research indicates that music accounts for 40 percent of YouTube's views, clearly making it a vital component of its platform and advertising revenues. However, it appears that the music recording industry is losing out due to distortions in the market permitted by the current regulations. According to industry data, a subscription music service pays the recording industry approximately $0.008 per song play, while YouTube pays only about $0.001 for the same play. On-demand services like YouTube are taking advantage of safe harbor permissions to negotiate licenses at an unfairly low rate based on a split of advertising revenue, thereby treating music as a commodity and avoiding the fixed per-play royalties typically seen for streaming services. While it's encouraging to discover that the U.S. music industry is experiencing growth if artists aren't paid fairly for the use of their work on streaming services and other digital platforms, how can they earn a reasonable living that will enable them to continue creating music? Fortunately, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The U.S. Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) is currently determining details of the country's mechanical royalty rates for the next five years, and the global music community is joining together to rally for a positive outcome. As streaming increasingly becomes a primary method for the distribution of music, the results of these proceedings are crucial for rights owners. The NMPA, along with the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), are acting on behalf of a united music community in an attempt to increase the rates paid to artists by streaming services. On the other side, technology companies like Apple, Spotify, Google, and Pandora are presenting their arguments as to why these rates should be kept at such a low level. For streaming services, the NMPA and NSAI propose a determination based on a per-stream rate, or on a percentage of advertising/subscription revenues, or both. Following the completion of the hearings, the CRB has until December 15, 2017, to determine the rates that will be in place for the next five years. Pledging to work "to achieve better, fairer royalty rates for all songwriters and music publishers," the NMPA is asking the CRB "to adopt a structure that recognizes the inherent value of a song, the value of a subscriber's payment to access those songs, and all of the revenue that digital services generate from offering your music." The NMPA and NSAI urged songwriters to put their name on an open letter to the technology giants and big streaming platforms. "As songwriters, we count on you to deliver our music to the fans who love it," the letter says. "We appreciate the innovative platforms you have developed to do this. However we must voice our outrage at the way you are devaluing our work in the process. Currently, you are fighting to pay us as little as possible in the Copyright Royalty Board proceedings. This is alarming not only because it threatens our livelihoods and ability to continue our craft, but also because it tells us that instead of being our business partners, you choose to be our adversaries." Over 4,000 songwriters have signed the petition to the CRB, including Bruce Hornsby, Herb Alpert, Paula Cole and Desmond Child. It's clear that some corporations use music to attract consumers, but unfortunately, they remain reluctant to pay royalties to support the music industry. Although the digital revolution is helping large technology companies and streaming services thrive, the distribution of digital royalties remains complex, with rights owners being underpaid for their work. Although these industry realities may appear grim, fortunately, there are digital platforms and streaming services that are supportive of songwriters, making it essential to choose digital business partners wisely. Some of the publishing and distribution services that are known to help rights owners effectively track royalties and generate income include CD Baby, Kobalt, the Orchard and Tunecore, all of which are built on a model of transparency and fair rates for songwriters. And the success of the model is often determined by the technology behind it. The recorded music industry is becoming increasingly multifaceted as digital platforms and streaming services rapidly take over the market, and it is proving to be tough for regulators to effectively keep up with the evolving landscape. However, as the organizations representing songwriters bring the current data to the CRB to consider in their determination of future royalty rates, music creators can remain hopeful that the industry will be singing a merrier tune by the end of this year. Sergey Bludov is Senior Vice President of Media and Entertainment Practice at DataArt. In this role, he oversees key projects, manages major client relationships, plays an essential role in developing sales strategy and ensuring revenue growth. With extensive technical background and deep commitment to the media industry, Sergey shares innovative insights in various publications. In his 10 year career with DataArt, Sergey has held a variety of leadership positions, building exceptional client teams and ensuring immaculate execution and delivery of high-profile projects serving music technology, digital and book publishing services. Sergey earned his master of science degree in computer engineering from the prestigious National Aerospace University 'Kharkiv Aviation Institute' in Ukraine. DataArt is a global technology consultancy that designs, develops and supports unique software solutions, helping clients take their businesses forward. Recognized for their deep domain expertise and superior technical talent, DataArt teams create new products and modernize complex legacy systems that affect technology transformation in select industries. DataArt has earned the trust of some of the world’s leading brands and most discerning clients, including Nasdaq, S&P, United Technologies, oneworld Alliance, Ocado, artnet, Betfair, and skyscanner. Organized as a global network of technology services firms, DataArt brings together expertise of over 2,200 professionals in 20 locations in the US, Europe, and Latin America. A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/ed10cfab-bb0e-4dca-9489-0cb484f1de5b


New York, NY, May 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The music industry has undergone a massive transformation over the past 20 years as consumers and corporations increasingly favor digital distribution over physical music mediums. Sergey Bludov, Senior Vice President, Media & Entertainment at DataArt has spent much of his career predicting how technology will change the music world, and these days, as CD sales dwindle and digital streaming services grow, he defines how music publishers and songwriters are paying the price. "They have to keep commodifying things to keep the share price up, but in doing so, they have made all content, including music and newspapers, worthless, in order to make their billions. And this is what we want?" - Thom Yorke, Radiohead Until 1998, digital rights were unregulated, resulting in publishers and songwriters receiving zero royalties for the use of their work on the internet, including downloads, audio streaming, video streaming, and satellite radio. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was implemented to prevent internet resources and platforms from continuing this practice, to ensure that copyright owners were paid for the use of their work in digital formats. At the same time, the infamously low rates paid by streaming services continue to threaten the livelihood of songwriters, as they receive a minuscule fraction of the royalties they earn from traditional radio, television, and physical music sales. The music streaming business has grown dramatically over the past few years, now passing the milestone of 100 million paying subscribers globally. Reports indicate that the U.S. music industry is on track to experience a second consecutive year of growth, which hasn't occurred since 1999. And this expansion shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, Goldman Sachs predicts that streaming revenues will almost double between now and 2020. However, the National Music Publishers' Association (NMPA) reports that for every $6 streaming companies pay to record labels, songwriters and publishers only receive approximately $1. Another massive complication in the fair distribution of digital royalties is the exploitation of the DMCA's "safe harbor" provisions. The concept is to protect online service providers from liability for copyright infringements by their website users, provided that they promptly remove content when a copyright owner informs them of infringement. However, many music industry experts believe that YouTube, one of the largest purveyors of on-demand digital music, evades paying fair market rates for the use of copyrighted content by exploiting the DMCA's safe harbor. According to a report by the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, market-based royalties for subscription-based services are approximately eight times higher than those paid by YouTube. Research indicates that music accounts for 40 percent of YouTube's views, clearly making it a vital component of its platform and advertising revenues. However, it appears that the music recording industry is losing out due to distortions in the market permitted by the current regulations. According to industry data, a subscription music service pays the recording industry approximately $0.008 per song play, while YouTube pays only about $0.001 for the same play. On-demand services like YouTube are taking advantage of safe harbor permissions to negotiate licenses at an unfairly low rate based on a split of advertising revenue, thereby treating music as a commodity and avoiding the fixed per-play royalties typically seen for streaming services. While it's encouraging to discover that the U.S. music industry is experiencing growth if artists aren't paid fairly for the use of their work on streaming services and other digital platforms, how can they earn a reasonable living that will enable them to continue creating music? Fortunately, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The U.S. Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) is currently determining details of the country's mechanical royalty rates for the next five years, and the global music community is joining together to rally for a positive outcome. As streaming increasingly becomes a primary method for the distribution of music, the results of these proceedings are crucial for rights owners. The NMPA, along with the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), are acting on behalf of a united music community in an attempt to increase the rates paid to artists by streaming services. On the other side, technology companies like Apple, Spotify, Google, and Pandora are presenting their arguments as to why these rates should be kept at such a low level. For streaming services, the NMPA and NSAI propose a determination based on a per-stream rate, or on a percentage of advertising/subscription revenues, or both. Following the completion of the hearings, the CRB has until December 15, 2017, to determine the rates that will be in place for the next five years. Pledging to work "to achieve better, fairer royalty rates for all songwriters and music publishers," the NMPA is asking the CRB "to adopt a structure that recognizes the inherent value of a song, the value of a subscriber's payment to access those songs, and all of the revenue that digital services generate from offering your music." The NMPA and NSAI urged songwriters to put their name on an open letter to the technology giants and big streaming platforms. "As songwriters, we count on you to deliver our music to the fans who love it," the letter says. "We appreciate the innovative platforms you have developed to do this. However we must voice our outrage at the way you are devaluing our work in the process. Currently, you are fighting to pay us as little as possible in the Copyright Royalty Board proceedings. This is alarming not only because it threatens our livelihoods and ability to continue our craft, but also because it tells us that instead of being our business partners, you choose to be our adversaries." Over 4,000 songwriters have signed the petition to the CRB, including Bruce Hornsby, Herb Alpert, Paula Cole and Desmond Child. It's clear that some corporations use music to attract consumers, but unfortunately, they remain reluctant to pay royalties to support the music industry. Although the digital revolution is helping large technology companies and streaming services thrive, the distribution of digital royalties remains complex, with rights owners being underpaid for their work. Although these industry realities may appear grim, fortunately, there are digital platforms and streaming services that are supportive of songwriters, making it essential to choose digital business partners wisely. Some of the publishing and distribution services that are known to help rights owners effectively track royalties and generate income include CD Baby, Kobalt, the Orchard and Tunecore, all of which are built on a model of transparency and fair rates for songwriters. And the success of the model is often determined by the technology behind it. The recorded music industry is becoming increasingly multifaceted as digital platforms and streaming services rapidly take over the market, and it is proving to be tough for regulators to effectively keep up with the evolving landscape. However, as the organizations representing songwriters bring the current data to the CRB to consider in their determination of future royalty rates, music creators can remain hopeful that the industry will be singing a merrier tune by the end of this year. Sergey Bludov is Senior Vice President of Media and Entertainment Practice at DataArt. In this role, he oversees key projects, manages major client relationships, plays an essential role in developing sales strategy and ensuring revenue growth. With extensive technical background and deep commitment to the media industry, Sergey shares innovative insights in various publications. In his 10 year career with DataArt, Sergey has held a variety of leadership positions, building exceptional client teams and ensuring immaculate execution and delivery of high-profile projects serving music technology, digital and book publishing services. Sergey earned his master of science degree in computer engineering from the prestigious National Aerospace University 'Kharkiv Aviation Institute' in Ukraine. DataArt is a global technology consultancy that designs, develops and supports unique software solutions, helping clients take their businesses forward. Recognized for their deep domain expertise and superior technical talent, DataArt teams create new products and modernize complex legacy systems that affect technology transformation in select industries. DataArt has earned the trust of some of the world’s leading brands and most discerning clients, including Nasdaq, S&P, United Technologies, oneworld Alliance, Ocado, artnet, Betfair, and skyscanner. Organized as a global network of technology services firms, DataArt brings together expertise of over 2,200 professionals in 20 locations in the US, Europe, and Latin America. A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/ed10cfab-bb0e-4dca-9489-0cb484f1de5b


New York, NY, May 23, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The music industry has undergone a massive transformation over the past 20 years as consumers and corporations increasingly favor digital distribution over physical music mediums. Sergey Bludov, Senior Vice President, Media & Entertainment at DataArt has spent much of his career predicting how technology will change the music world, and these days, as CD sales dwindle and digital streaming services grow, he defines how music publishers and songwriters are paying the price. "They have to keep commodifying things to keep the share price up, but in doing so, they have made all content, including music and newspapers, worthless, in order to make their billions. And this is what we want?" - Thom Yorke, Radiohead Until 1998, digital rights were unregulated, resulting in publishers and songwriters receiving zero royalties for the use of their work on the internet, including downloads, audio streaming, video streaming, and satellite radio. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) was implemented to prevent internet resources and platforms from continuing this practice, to ensure that copyright owners were paid for the use of their work in digital formats. At the same time, the infamously low rates paid by streaming services continue to threaten the livelihood of songwriters, as they receive a minuscule fraction of the royalties they earn from traditional radio, television, and physical music sales. The music streaming business has grown dramatically over the past few years, now passing the milestone of 100 million paying subscribers globally. Reports indicate that the U.S. music industry is on track to experience a second consecutive year of growth, which hasn't occurred since 1999. And this expansion shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, Goldman Sachs predicts that streaming revenues will almost double between now and 2020. However, the National Music Publishers' Association (NMPA) reports that for every $6 streaming companies pay to record labels, songwriters and publishers only receive approximately $1. Another massive complication in the fair distribution of digital royalties is the exploitation of the DMCA's "safe harbor" provisions. The concept is to protect online service providers from liability for copyright infringements by their website users, provided that they promptly remove content when a copyright owner informs them of infringement. However, many music industry experts believe that YouTube, one of the largest purveyors of on-demand digital music, evades paying fair market rates for the use of copyrighted content by exploiting the DMCA's safe harbor. According to a report by the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, market-based royalties for subscription-based services are approximately eight times higher than those paid by YouTube. Research indicates that music accounts for 40 percent of YouTube's views, clearly making it a vital component of its platform and advertising revenues. However, it appears that the music recording industry is losing out due to distortions in the market permitted by the current regulations. According to industry data, a subscription music service pays the recording industry approximately $0.008 per song play, while YouTube pays only about $0.001 for the same play. On-demand services like YouTube are taking advantage of safe harbor permissions to negotiate licenses at an unfairly low rate based on a split of advertising revenue, thereby treating music as a commodity and avoiding the fixed per-play royalties typically seen for streaming services. While it's encouraging to discover that the U.S. music industry is experiencing growth if artists aren't paid fairly for the use of their work on streaming services and other digital platforms, how can they earn a reasonable living that will enable them to continue creating music? Fortunately, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The U.S. Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) is currently determining details of the country's mechanical royalty rates for the next five years, and the global music community is joining together to rally for a positive outcome. As streaming increasingly becomes a primary method for the distribution of music, the results of these proceedings are crucial for rights owners. The NMPA, along with the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI), are acting on behalf of a united music community in an attempt to increase the rates paid to artists by streaming services. On the other side, technology companies like Apple, Spotify, Google, and Pandora are presenting their arguments as to why these rates should be kept at such a low level. For streaming services, the NMPA and NSAI propose a determination based on a per-stream rate, or on a percentage of advertising/subscription revenues, or both. Following the completion of the hearings, the CRB has until December 15, 2017, to determine the rates that will be in place for the next five years. Pledging to work "to achieve better, fairer royalty rates for all songwriters and music publishers," the NMPA is asking the CRB "to adopt a structure that recognizes the inherent value of a song, the value of a subscriber's payment to access those songs, and all of the revenue that digital services generate from offering your music." The NMPA and NSAI urged songwriters to put their name on an open letter to the technology giants and big streaming platforms. "As songwriters, we count on you to deliver our music to the fans who love it," the letter says. "We appreciate the innovative platforms you have developed to do this. However we must voice our outrage at the way you are devaluing our work in the process. Currently, you are fighting to pay us as little as possible in the Copyright Royalty Board proceedings. This is alarming not only because it threatens our livelihoods and ability to continue our craft, but also because it tells us that instead of being our business partners, you choose to be our adversaries." Over 4,000 songwriters have signed the petition to the CRB, including Bruce Hornsby, Herb Alpert, Paula Cole and Desmond Child. It's clear that some corporations use music to attract consumers, but unfortunately, they remain reluctant to pay royalties to support the music industry. Although the digital revolution is helping large technology companies and streaming services thrive, the distribution of digital royalties remains complex, with rights owners being underpaid for their work. Although these industry realities may appear grim, fortunately, there are digital platforms and streaming services that are supportive of songwriters, making it essential to choose digital business partners wisely. Some of the publishing and distribution services that are known to help rights owners effectively track royalties and generate income include CD Baby, Kobalt, the Orchard and Tunecore, all of which are built on a model of transparency and fair rates for songwriters. And the success of the model is often determined by the technology behind it. The recorded music industry is becoming increasingly multifaceted as digital platforms and streaming services rapidly take over the market, and it is proving to be tough for regulators to effectively keep up with the evolving landscape. However, as the organizations representing songwriters bring the current data to the CRB to consider in their determination of future royalty rates, music creators can remain hopeful that the industry will be singing a merrier tune by the end of this year. Sergey Bludov is Senior Vice President of Media and Entertainment Practice at DataArt. In this role, he oversees key projects, manages major client relationships, plays an essential role in developing sales strategy and ensuring revenue growth. With extensive technical background and deep commitment to the media industry, Sergey shares innovative insights in various publications. In his 10 year career with DataArt, Sergey has held a variety of leadership positions, building exceptional client teams and ensuring immaculate execution and delivery of high-profile projects serving music technology, digital and book publishing services. Sergey earned his master of science degree in computer engineering from the prestigious National Aerospace University 'Kharkiv Aviation Institute' in Ukraine. DataArt is a global technology consultancy that designs, develops and supports unique software solutions, helping clients take their businesses forward. Recognized for their deep domain expertise and superior technical talent, DataArt teams create new products and modernize complex legacy systems that affect technology transformation in select industries. DataArt has earned the trust of some of the world’s leading brands and most discerning clients, including Nasdaq, S&P, United Technologies, oneworld Alliance, Ocado, artnet, Betfair, and skyscanner. Organized as a global network of technology services firms, DataArt brings together expertise of over 2,200 professionals in 20 locations in the US, Europe, and Latin America. A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/ed10cfab-bb0e-4dca-9489-0cb484f1de5b


News Article | June 14, 2017
Site: www.pitandquarry.com

The Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal and Economic Public Policy released a study that shows the positive impact of stone, sand or gravel operations on jobs, tax revenues and other businesses in a community, reports the National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA). According to the study, every single job at an aggregate operation supports nearly five other jobs outside the quarry, reports NSSGA. This means 96,740 jobs are directly supported by aggregate positions. “The aggregates industry – literally the foundation of our nation’s infrastructure – is a significant contributor to the economic well-being of the United States, generating $27 billion in annual sales and employing 100,000 mostly skilled workers,” the report reads. “The industry supports $122 billion in national sales, $32 billion in national earnings (i.e. wages), and between 364,000 and 600,000 jobs across a wide range of occupations and industries.“ Quarry jobs receive an average annual salary of $75,129, NSSGA adds. Read the full report here and check out some social media graphics based on the data.


PRINCETON, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Certara®, the leading provider of decision support technology and consulting services for optimizing drug development and improving health outcomes, today announced that it is partnering with Phase I Unit, Peking Union Medical College (PUMC) Hospital’s Clinical Pharmacology Research Center (PUMCH-CPRC) in Beijing to help Chinese pharmaceutical companies enhance their drug development processes. Phase I Unit at PUMCH-CPRC will employ Certara’s Simcyp® Population-based Simulator to develop physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models in support of Chinese new and generic drug applications to the Chinese Food and Drug Administration (CFDA). “We are proud to support China’s efforts to foster healthcare innovation. By increasing its adoption of PBPK modeling and simulation, it will expedite its pharmaceutical companies’ drug development processes and regulatory submissions, whilst also helping to bring safer therapies to market,” said Simcyp President and Managing Director Dr. Stephen Toon. “An increasing number of Chinese pharmaceutical companies want to use PBPK modeling and simulation as part of their drug development plans. We felt that the best way to maintain Certara’s high scientific standards for these Chinese customers and help circumvent some of the language-related commercial impediments was to partner with Phase I Unit at PUMCH-CPRC, which is one of the most prestigious academic pharmaceutical research institutions in China,” added Dr. Toon. “We are delighted to expand our partnership with Certara and be able to provide Chinese pharmaceutical companies with modeling and simulation consulting support to strengthen their regulatory submissions,” said Professor Pei Hu, MD, professor and director of Phase I Unit at PUMCH-CPRC. Certara and Phase I Unit at PUMCH-CPRC already have a great partnership track record. The two organizations have been working together for several years to increase PBPK modeling and simulation education and training in China and have co-hosted several national workshops. Phase I Unit at PUMCH-CPRC uses Certara’s modeling and simulation technology for first-in-human, point-of-care, and late-phase clinical trials. It has many years’ experience using both Certara’s Simcyp Simulator and Phoenix® software and has published numerous peer-reviewed papers based on research conducted using those platforms. Phase I Unit at PUMCH-CPRC is a Phoenix Center of Excellence. CFDA also employs Certara’s Phoenix software and is a regulatory affiliate member of the Simcyp Consortium. PUMC Hospital, which was founded by the Rockefeller Foundation in 1921, conducts clinical research into severe, rare and complicated diseases. It has 4,000 employees and is affiliated with both PUMC and the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. Certara’s Simcyp Simulator is the pharmaceutical industry’s most sophisticated platform for determining first-in-human dose selection, designing more efficient and effective clinical studies, evaluating new drug formulations, and predicting drug-drug interactions and PK outcomes in clinical populations. These include vulnerable populations such as pediatric patients, pregnant women, and patients with impaired organ function. Phoenix is the most advanced, intuitive, and widely-used software for PK, pharmacodynamic, and toxicokinetic modeling and simulation. Through this new partnership with PUMC Hospital, Certara is providing Chinese customers with access to its modeling and simulation technology and helping accelerate safer and more effective drug development in China. Certara is a leading decision support technology and consulting organization committed to optimizing drug development and improving health outcomes. Certara’s solutions, which span drug discovery through patient care, use the most scientifically-advanced modeling and simulation technologies and regulatory strategies to increase the probability of regulatory and commercial success. Its clients include hundreds of global biopharmaceutical companies, leading academic institutions, and key regulatory agencies. For more information, visit www.certara.com.


News Article | April 6, 2016
Site: motherboard.vice.com

A telecom-funded policy paper slamming local government-owned broadband networks published Wednesday is masquerading as a serious “economic analysis,” but is yet another example of the dominant players in telecom manipulating the political system to suit their interests. In the last couple years, there’s been a strong push by local municipalities to provide Gigabit fiber internet connections for their residents, whether that means incentivizing a company like Google to come to their city, partnering with a startup ISP, or building the entire network by themselves using taxpayer money. The “municipal-owned” broadband networks are the ones taken on by The Impact of Government-Owned Broadband Networks on Private Investment and Consumer Welfare, and are, at least in theory, the ones that present the biggest threat to existing ISPs. Municipal networks are also the easiest targets for telecom lobbying—taxpayer money being used to build a service that competes with private companies make an easy mark for small-government types. And when muni broadband networks fail, they often fail spectacularly. That’s why, over the past few decades, the most severe and destructive broadband lobbying has happened at the state level, as incumbent internet operators have found it easier to get state and local level policies against municipal broadband. So far, 23 states have passed anti municipal broadband laws, and often times, the legislation itself is written by lobbying groups such as the American Legislative Exchange Council. The Federal Communications Commission is working to preempt some of these laws to allow greater municipal investment in some states, a crisis for telecom that has led to a bevy of pending lawsuits. It’s in this context that the paper is released, and there’s no doubt that it will be used as a study to support telecom-written legislation that are passed to governors and state lawmakers as evidence that taxpayer-funded internet services just don’t work. This is not my opinion, this is the stated purpose of the paper, published by the State Government Leadership Foundation, a group that, like ALEC, “has assisted state elected leaders around the country in crafting sound policy solutions and promoting their successes.” On a conference call with reporters Wednesday, former Congressman Tom Reynolds, the chairman of the SGLF, said the purpose of the paper is to "protect taxpayers." “When the FCC decided to preempt state laws in March of last year dealing with municipal broadband, SGLF realized it needed to lend its voice to help [state legislators] craft economically sound laws that protect taxpayers from undesired consequences of government-run broadband,” he said. The SGLF was founded in part with donations from AT&T and Time Warner, and has since made its funding sources unknown. As a lawmaker, Reynolds counted Verizon and AT&T among his top donors, according to Open Secrets. George S. Ford, the man they tapped to write the report, spent the late 1990s and early 2000s working for telecom companies MCI and Z-Tel. He now works for the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal and Public Policy Studies, a think tank that grew out of AT&T’s old research arm and has regularly received telecom support throughout its history. Last year, the organization filed a legal brief in support of the US Telecom Association’s challenge of the FCC’s net neutrality rules, and both Ford and his boss, Lawrence Spiwak, have written a dizzying array of op-eds and reports in support of the telecom industry. This paper, then, will be fed to lawmakers and governors under the guise of a serious economic analysis that proves that local governments have no place becoming internet service providers. But if you actually read the study, it quickly becomes clear that there's little substance here. The study itself paints municipal broadband networks as a financial disaster for taxpayers, for the communities that install them, and for the telecom companies that Ford argues should be receiving the subsidies that are used to build out municipal networks. “If subsidies are to be used, theory indicates that subsidies to existing firms to increase output to achieve externalities is likely to be a more efficient approach,” he wrote. While Ford is correct that not every municipal broadband project has succeeded—there have been some catastrophic failures beset with scandal that have undermined the movement in general—there are many examples (Chattanooga, Tennessee; Lafayette, Louisiana; and Leverett, Massachusetts come to mind) of it working quite well. So far, at least 83 cities in the US have offered fiber to their citizens. Many—most—are not economic disasters. The most glaring problem with Ford’s paper is that he uses economic theory over and over to prove his point, without doing any deep dives into the economics of these real-world examples. Time and time again, cities have been thrilled with the fact that investment in broadband technology has led to businesses relocating to take advantage of fast and reliable internet. Ford dismisses this phenomenon as “business stealing” that may be good for one city but is bad for the rest of the country. “Chattanooga and other cities were perhaps wise to get a first-mover advantage in stealing businesses from other cities, but as the deployment of fiber networks becomes more pervasive the first- or early-mover advantages of cities with municipal broadband networks is diminished,” he wrote. “Most troubling is that the federal subsidies used to support financially municipal networks are funded through federal taxation; therefore, the people in cities losing businesses are perversely funding the broadband networks that are destroying their economy.” This is a bizarre argument does not leave room for the idea that top-of-class broadband can spur and support the creation of new businesses that take advantage of higher bandwidth connections; it also does not take into account research that suggests faster connections lead to higher real estate values and more educational opportunities for residents, which are associated with better economic outcomes overall. Finally, it operates on the assumption that the status quo should be good enough going forward—that America's businesses can and should continue to compete globally with companies based in countries with broadband that runs laps around ours. Ford wrote that labeling broadband a “necessity” or “a human right” is “melodramatic” and wrote in the paper that “downloading a movie in five seconds rather than five minutes is a private issue, not a social good worthy of taxes and subsidies.” He also says that competition alone has not been proven to increase the quality or quantity of any given good, then uses this to suggest that building municipal networks will not be enough to improve someone’s internet experience. But he does this in a totally abstract economic theory sense without looking at the fact that new fiber networks—be they run by Google, a startup, or the local government—are objectively leaps and bounds faster than the existing infrastructure. “We’re almost ‘high’ on it,” Ford said in the conference call. “People are kooky for broadband … there’s no rational broadband thinking at the FCC and people are carrying on about it so much.” Ford argues that existing telecom companies often can’t compete with taxpayer-subsidized networks and thus don’t end up trying, leading to less overall competition. The thing is, there are multiple paths toward a sufficient broadband experience: In a perfect world, private companies would compete with each other and would offer fast cheap internet to its customers. In cities where that’s happened, such as Kansas City and Austin, there is no clamoring for municipal networks. Alternatively, a city—and its residents—can decide that they’re tired of being underserved and overcharged and can opt, with their own tax dollars, to do something about it. Municipal broadband is inherently a repudiation of the status quo, an emphatic statement by voters and their representatives that the free market has not worked for them. Municipal broadband certainly isn't right for every city, but it's an option that individual communities should be legally allowed to explore. State-level laws that put up significant barriers to exploring that option serve no one but the telecom companies that helped write them. So Ford is right: Municipal broadband is bad for telecom companies. He says they can’t compete with municipal providers who are “truly not interested in profit maximization.” But after years of watching big telecom care about profits and nothing else, who can blame communities for taking control of their broadband destiny?

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