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As one example of the value of songwriters' work, ASCAP negotiated higher royalties for Apple's iTunes Radio, a streaming service that launches Wednesday and will compete with Pandora.
While Pandora said the ruling "has no impact on the royalty rates Pandora currently pays to ASCAP," Pandora spokeswoman Mollie Starr said it does annul agreements Pandora reached separately with Universal Music Group and BMG/Chrysalis Music after they withdrew rights for Pandora in July.
With Tuesday's ruling, Pandora will now pay Universal and BMG the lower ASCAP rate.
Starr said Pandora will continue to honor a separate rate that it negotiated with Sony/ATV, which bought EMI Music Publishing in June 2012, through the end of the year.
Sony/ATV CEO Marty Bandier said in a statement he was "very disappointed" at the ruling and hopes it is appealed and overturned.
"Our top priority always is to protect the rights of our songwriters and their copyrighted compositions, and this decision impinges on those rights," he said. "We are carefully considering all of our options."
A spokesman for Universal did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment. A BMG spokesman had no immediate comment.
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