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RIAA Revenue Dwindles As Labels Cut Back

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  • RIAA Revenue Dwindles As Labels Cut Back

    The latest RIAA tax filing shows that the revenue generated by the anti-piracy group has reached a new low. In just two years the membership dues from music labels have been cut in half and have now sunk to below $30 million a year. While the group has 72 employees, payouts to the top two executives including CEO Cary Sherman amount to more than $3 million, some 25% of the total wage bill.

    The RIAA has submitted its latest tax filing to the IRS, covering the fiscal year ending March 31, 2011.
    Despite the long reporting delay, the figures are well worth a look as they show a massive decline in revenue for the music group. In just two years the RIAA’s entire budget was almost cut in half.

    The total revenue in the latest filing is $29.1 million, down from $51.35 million two years earlier. This drop in revenue is a direct result of the dwindling membership dues paid by music labels, from $49.76 million to $27.88 million in the same period.
    The effects of the decline in revenue are also visible in the massive cuts in personnel.

    In its most recent filing the RIAA lists 72 people on the payroll compared to 117 two years earlier. In total these employees earned $12.7 million of which nearly 25% went into the pockets of the top two executives.

    The top earner in the year ending March 2011 was Mitch Bainwol (CEO) with $1.75 million a year with a working week of 50 hours. Current CEO Cary Sherman (then President) came in second with $1.37 million.

    Other high income employees were Neil Turkewitz (EVP International), Steve Marks (General Counsel) and Mitch Glazier (Public Policy & Industry Relations) with $696,036, $675,528 and $599,661 respectively.

    Looking at other expenses we see that the RIAA spent $2.3 million on lobbying, a figure that has remained relatively stable over the years.
    The same cannot be said for the group’s legal fees, which dropped from $16.50 to $2.34 million in just two years. The latter is the area where the RIAA cut back the most, in part bystopping their lawsuits against individual file-sharers.

    All in all the downward income trend clearly signals that there’s less support from the major music labels. While the RIAA is by no means defunct yet, the organization isn’t getting any stronger either.
    The full 2010/2011 filing is available here
    .

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  • #2
    Hurray!
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    • #3
      Originally posted by mrnewbie View Post
      Hurray!
      Hurray indeed. Hopefully this decrease in revenue will help them disappear
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      • #4
        The tide turns slowly, patience ensures that all things shall fall, even the strongest castle.
        Patience is not a gift given to you.
        It is cultivated by yourself.
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        • #5
          Originally posted by Aengus View Post
          The tide turns slowly, patience ensures that all things shall fall, even the strongest castle.
          Well said Aengus! I still cant believe those people make half a million a year for what they do. Sheesh!

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          • #6
            Now that is great news. Bastards.

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            • #7
              Yes, it's only a matter of time before they go bankrupt.
              They won't be taking advantage of musicians and ripping us off anymore, oh yeah, and no more manipulating and mesmerizing kids with social engineering and subliminal messaging in their crappy noise.

              What.cd ?
              九死一生を得る

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              • #8
                excellent. Keep this up, and let them know that RIAA is not the boss of the consumers.

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                • #9
                  It may be good news but they won't be going out of bussiness anytime soon they're still getting plenty of cash thrown at them.

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                  • #10
                    RIAA will be earning a lot, they won't show all of their figures.
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                    • #11
                      HAHA. Good news. Hopefully other organizations like it have the same trends. 2 Years from now maybe they will be at about 12 million a year maybe less.
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