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Appeared on: Thursday, October 12, 2000
RIAA to develop identifier system for music on Internet

"...Furthering efforts to protect copyrights online, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on Thursday said it was developing a standardised system to identify digital files of songs, much like the way bar codes identify physical CDs in stores.

"We're hoping to have the system (in place) by the middle of next year. It's something that we need for all business models on the Internet," said Cary Sherman, senior executive vice president and general counsel of the RIAA. Under the proposed system, for instance, the header of a digital music file for a Bruce Springsteen song would now contain a uniform system number making it easier to monitor sales, usage and royalty payments.

Sherman said the RIAA hopes to create a system that is fully compatible with these systems as well as the International Standard Recording Code (ISRC), a digital 12 character code embedded in CDs, that identifies the country where the copyright resides, the manufacturer of the CD and other details.

The RIAA is working with the International Federation of Phonographic Industry (IFPI) and the Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ) and has also selected UK-based consulting firm Rightscom Ltd. for this project. The RIAA is also soon expected to announce the formation of a pool that would collect royalties from Webcasters that stream music online, industry sources have said..."



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