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Saturday, August 25, 2012

Why Is RIAA Losing Revenues?

According to the RIAA’s tax report, the music trade group’s revenues dramatically dropped in the past couple years. Now the experts can disclose the reason for this downfall. The Recording Industry Association of America, the outfit that represents the US recording industry, has recently presented the tax filing to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The report covered the fiscal year ending with March 2011.

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The massive downfall was noticed within the past 2 years with RIAA’s revenues being cut almost in half. The report revealed that the total revenue of the group was of $29 million, while two years ago it was $51 million. The huge drop was caused by the ever-diminishing membership dues paid by music recording companies – from $50 million to $28 million in the same period. The experts point out that the effects were also highlighted by the outfit’s cuts in personnel. At the moment, the RIAA is having 72 people on their payroll (compared with 117 two years ago), which totals in $13 million in pay checks, ¼ of which goes to executives’ pockets.

So, where does this money go? The tax filing revealed that Mitch Bainwol (Chief Executive Officer) gets $1.75 million annually, while Cary Sherman (the current CEO and former president of the outfit) earn only $1.37 million. Now you can understand why these guys are always crying about piracy. Aside from these two, Neil Turkewitz (EVP International), Steve Marks (General Counsel) and Mitch Glazier (Public Policy & Industry Relations) got $0.7 million, $0.67 million and $0.6 million respectively.

In the meantime, the tax filing indicated that the anti-piracy outfit spent $2.3 million on lobbying – this figure looks like the one that remains balanced over the years, while the group’s legal fees have dropped from $16.5 million to $2.34 million.

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