My name is Christopher S. Harrison. I am the Chief Executive Officer of the Digital Media Association (DiMA).
I was recently named one of the top music lawyers by Billboard:
I appeared on CSPAN’s The Communicators (July 23, 2014)
I have twice testified before Congress on music licensing issues.
* “Music Licensing Under Section 17,” House Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, June 25, 2014
* How Much For a Song?: The Antitrust Decrees that Govern the Market for Music” Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights, March 10, 2015.
In addition, I am a frequent speaker on music licensing issues.
* Make Copyright Great Again: Music Copyright Reform in the Age of Trump, IAEL @ Midem, June 6, 2017
* The DMCA, YouTube & You: Charting the Future of Music Online, Entertainment & Technology Law Conference, March 15, 2017
* Money Changes Everything: Accountability and Transparency in Music Transaction Processing, Copyright and Technology, January 24, 2017
* “Building the Master List: Towards a Comprehensive Database of Rights and Assets,” New York Media Fest, September 28, 2016
* “Copyright Reform: The Politics of Music and Copyright,” NYSBA in association with CMJ Music Marathon, October 16, 2015
* “Future of Radio,” Wells Fargo Investor Forum, March 26, 2015
* “What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You,” SXSW, March 20, 2015
* “Every Centavo Counts: Making Sense of Streaming & The New Digital Economy,” Latin Alternative Music Conference, July 10, 2014
* “Hot Topics in Music Licensing,” SF Music Tech, May 20, 2014
* “Disruption As A Business Model: Can the Music Industry Survive As A Totally Free Unregulated Market?” Music Biz, May 8, 2014
* “Reforms & Suggested Changes for the Industry,” UC Hastings Communication & Entertainment Law Journal Symposium 2014, March 21, 2014
* “Compulsory Licenses and Online Music,” SXSW, March 13, 2014
* “Collective v. Direct Licensing,” World Creators Summit, June 5, 2013
* “The Fight for Fair Fees in the Music Industry,” SXSW, March 14, 2013
* “New Business Models in Music and Media,” New York Bar Entertainment, Art and Sports Law Section Annual Meeting, January 21, 2013
Prior to being named CEO of DiMA, I was VP, Music Business Affairs for Sirius XM Satellite Radio. Prior to joining Sirius XM, I was VP, Business Affairs and Associate General Counsel at Pandora Radio, Inc. Prior to joining Pandora, I was General Counsel and then Chief Operating Officer of DMX, Inc., a leading provider of business music services. Business Affairs and Licensing reported to me in this role.
DMX provides commercial music services to more than 100,000 business in the U.S., Canada, Latin America and South Africa. DMX’ residential music services are received in more than 18,000,000 homes in the U.S. through cable and DTH satellite multichannel service operators, including DIRECTV. In addition, DMX’ residential music services are received in more than 5,000,000 homes in Latin America through cable and DTH multichannel service operators, including Sky Mexico and DIRECTV Latin America.
Before becoming COO, I served as General Counsel for DMX where I implemented the first successful direct licensing initiative to secure the public performance, reproduction and distribution rights to musical compositions directly from music publishers, resulting in 1,000+ licenses covering more than 5,000 catalogs. In addition, I represented DMX in its successful litigation efforts to obtain the first-ever adjustable fee blanket licenses from ASCAP and BMI to afford DMX credit against its blanket fees for the public performance of works licensed directly from music publishers, in which both courts adopted DMX’s position, resulting in more than $5.5mm in annual savings.
• Broadcast Music, Inc. v. DMX, Inc., 726 F. Supp.2d 355 (SDNY 2010). Judge Stanton adopted DMX’s lowest proposal of $18.91.
• In Re Application of THP Capstar Acquisition Corp. (now known as DMX, Inc.), 756 F. Supp.2d 516 (SDNY 2010). Judge Cote adopted DMX’s lowest proposal of $13.74.
The Second Circuit affirmed both district court decisions. Broadcast Music, Inc. v. DMX, Inc., 683 F.3d 32 (2nd Cir. 2012).
As General Counsel, I was responsible for all necessary music licenses, including public performance, reproduction, distribution and synchronization associated with the musical compositions and sound recordings, as applicable, utilized as part of DMX’ music services to (a) commercial establishments, (b) private residences, (c) personal computers and mobile devices as a digital stream and/or digital download, and (e) personal portable media devices or other physical media, and managed 2,000+ catalog-wide licenses with record labels, 1,000+ catalog-wide licenses with music publishers, and hundreds of individual synchronization licenses.
I received my J.D. in 2001 from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. I also received my Ph.D. (Political Science | International Relations) in 2001, also from University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. My dissertation The Politics of the International Pricing of Prescription Drugs was published by Praeger Publishers in 2004.
This is the “unofficial” blog of the University of California, Berkeley School of Law Music Law Seminar (and formerly of the University of Texas Law School). This seminar will introduce students to the law as it applies to the music industry. Topics may include legal issues surrounding writing music, recording music, performing music, distributing music (physically and digitally), licensing music, and miscellaneous but related topics such as trademarks and rights of publicity. This blog will be used to facilitate and enhance our in-class lectures by providing a single point of information that students can review at their leisure. This is my personal blog and does not represent the views of the University of Texas Law School, any past, present, or future clients or employers.