Ms. O'Connell won the Computer Law Association's 2003 Information Technology Law Writing Competition for this article discussing the controversy over Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panels ("CARPs"). A CARP sets royalty rates for the performance of copyrighted works when the copyright owner and the broadcaster have not agreed on those rates. Congress created CARPs as a way to encourage the creation of creative works and to promote public access to these creative works. Recently, a CARP recommended royalty rates for webcasting; the broadcasting of copyrighted works over the Internet. The CARP's recommendation was rejected by the Librarian of Congress, criticized by both the copyright owner and the webcasters, and statutorily overruled by Congress. O'Connell argues that CARPs are an imperfect way to encourage the creation of creative works and to promote public access to these creative works. First, many webcasters find participation in CARPs to be prohibitively expensive. Second, CARPs have limited power to compel discovery. Finally, CARP decisions lack permanence because, as evidenced by the Webcaster CARP, these decisions are closely scrutinized by the Librarian of Congress and Congress. O'Connell offers solutions to these problems, but also suggests that the DMCA may be the crux of the royalty rate problem; Congress should consider not only changing CARP processes, but also amending the laws that CARPs interpret.
Sara J. O'Connell,
Counting Down another Music Marathon: Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panels and the Case of Internet Radio,
8 Marq. Intellectual Property L. Rev. 161
Available at: http://scholarship.law.marquette.edu/iplr/vol8/iss1/6