Discovery Networks reportedly contacted the Production Music Association (PMA) to capitulate on the idea of a direct license, which would bypass traditional back-end royalty payments through ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Such licenses were thought to be made retroactive to episodes already airing on the network. The PMA reports :
Discovery reached out to us yesterday and stated that they would like to assure the music community that they are committed to providing compensation to music providers for music in Discovery programming, that they will be continuing to operate under the PRO model for all current and past programming and that music providers will continue receiving royalties through the PRO’s for such programming. They also stated that they will evaluate new programs on a case-by-case basis based on the creative needs of the programs.
While this is good news in the short term, the long-term effect of the Scripps buyout by Discovery are yet to be seen, since Scripps have long been adopters of the direct license model.