Webcasters ask federal appeals court to stall new rates

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NPR and other webcasters asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit court to a stay the controversial royalty hike a panel of federal copyright judges ordered in March, Variety and others report. (See also, the Radio and Internet Newsletter.) The new rates are scheduled to go into effect in July. NPR also filed an affidavit on behalf of public radio claiming that most pubradio stations are not able to make the calculations required by the proposed per-performance standard. On Wednesday (5/30) the network notified the court that it would appeal the copyright board’s decision. “It is crucial that relief be provided because in only 45 days – and counting – public radio stations which reach a broad audience will be forced to operate under commercial broadcaster rules and pay commercial-level royalties, and we still have no idea how much that amount is or even how to calculate it,” spokeswoman Andi Sporkin said in a statement.