Music Industry Seeks to Level the Playing Field with New Law

On October 11th, 2018, President Trump signed into law the Music Modernization Act (MMA). Utah senior senator Orrin Hatch was co-author of the bill. The Music Modernization Act will ensure that musical artists and their publishers are not being undercut in the digital era of music streaming services. The MMA is long overdue.

These improvements made to the original copyright law circa 1909 will boost the morale of musicians and contributing artists alike.

In the cutthroat music world, it is something of an achievement when so many industry bulwarks align voicing their resounding approval of this new legislation.

Giant streaming services such as Swedish industry leader Spotify and Apple music will now be required to follow more stringent laws governing royalties distributed to musical artists, producers and publishers that contribute to the entire music industry ecosystem.

Smaller artists, producers, and independent labels have enjoyed increased exposure with the streaming economy, but have taken major hits in earnings potential and fair revenue distribution. In the digital age, the poor musicians became poorer.

Little does Senator Orrin Hatch know that Utah is also home to Pindify CEO, Christoffer Wallin. Prior to the MMA law being signed, Wallin and his team at Pindify created a digital platform that slices through all the red tape—and allows musicians, producers and publishers the transparency and fair earnings distribution shares they deserve.

Wallin shared an earnings distribution example for artists that publish their exclusive content on Pindify. Musical artists would be relieved to know that they earn a substantial percentage of revenue from every invitation where a fan becomes a paying subscriber—and earn additional revenue from every subscribing fan that interacts with the artist’s published content. On average, every fan that becomes a paying subscriber earns that artist $2.15 per month as part of an $11 per month subscription fee. Earnings also increase with fan interaction.

Wallin chimes in regarding the MMA law he sees will be a huge win for musical artists across the country, “Pindify is already transparent, which is what the MMA law seeks to accomplish for the music industry. Pindify is already an ethical marketplace where musicians and artists of virtually any genre can earn revenue. We’ve created a very transparent business model. Artists know what they publish, they see who consumes their content, they share the co-ownership with the other artists who contribute, and they see what cut Pindify takes. Which is very small compared to the industry giants.”

We all enjoy music and as the NMPA president said regarding Trump’s signing on October 11th, “Music has value – and that value is not reflected in the way songwriters and artists are treated under century-old laws that have not kept pace with technology. Right now, there is unprecedented momentum behind efforts to fix outdated laws that prevent music creators from earning what they deserve, and I am thrilled to say that publishers, songwriters, composers, labels, artists and PROs stand together to fix them.”

The MMA laws align with the new digital age of music. As with any industry ecosystem where everyone is valued and the playing field is more evenly distributed, the morale boost is sure to impact the music industry in dramatic ways. That can only be good for everyone.


Elizabeth Jarrard