by Howie Cockrill
Recently Warner Music appointed Jim Griffin, formerly head of technology at Geffen Records and one of the preeminent minds in the digital music business, to explore and oversee a project to monetize P2P music file sharing online.
The idea is to add a $5 fee to current monthly ISP user charges. This fee would then go into a fund used to compensate musicians, songwriters, labels and publishers for the use of their content online.
The money collected would be distributed amongst rights holders by a collection agency, similar to what ASCAP and BMI do for public performance royalties.
Griffin himself has estimated that this fund could create up to $20 billion in annual revenue, which is approximately double the current annual revenue of the American music industry.