The music industry in the United States is relatively small in size but large in cultural presence. It consists of those creating music (artists and composers), those creating or enforcing rights in music (publishers and performing rights licensing organizations), those producing recordings (labels), and those in the marketing of music (distributors). Because there are many labels and only a few distributors, the issue of ownership concentration arises primarily on the distribution level, where four companies dominate. Intellectual property rights are a key element in the music business. Music publishers and performance rights licensing organizations deal with those rights. This chapter examines market concentration trends in music publishing, performance rights, distribution, retailing, and music channels.
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