Feeds

EC moots pan-European music licensing

Good governance

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

High performance access to file storage

The European Commission today set out measures for updating the management of online rights in musical works, recommending that an EU-wide copyright licensing system be established.

The Commission published a study on the current position in July, concluding that the absence of pan-European copyright licences makes it difficult for new European-based online services, such as simulcasting (a simultaneous broadcast of programs or events across more than one medium) and webcasting (where a broadcast is uploaded by the sender and downloaded by the receiver), to take off.

In particular, it found that the present structures for cross-border collective management of music copyright – which were developed for the analogue environment – prevent music from fulfilling its unique potential as a driver for online content services.

It consulted on the issue, asking respondents whether it should:

  • do nothing;
  • improve cooperation among collecting societies by allowing each society in the EU to grant a EU-wide license covering the other societies’ repertoires; or
  • give right-holders the choice to appoint a collective rights manager for the online use of their musical works across the entire EU.

According to the Commission, respondents were generally agreed that doing nothing was not an option, but were divided between the other two approaches.

Commercial users favoured option two; the majority of collective rights managers favoured modified versions of the second option; while the music publisher’s community, the independent record labels and certain collective rights managers preferred the third option.

As a result, the Commission has recommended that right-holders and commercial users of copyright-protected material should be given a choice as to their preferred model of licensing, as different online services might require different forms of EU-wide licensing policies.

The recommendation therefore proposes the elimination of territorial restrictions and customer allocation provisions in existing licensing contracts, while leaving right-holders who do not wish to make use of those contracts the right to offer their repertoire for EU-wide direct licensing.

The recommendation also includes provisions on governance, transparency, dispute settlement and accountability of collective rights managers, which the Commission hopes will introduce a culture of transparency and good governance into the system.

“Today we have made workable proposals on how licensing of musical work for the internet can be improved,” said Internal Market and Services Commissioner Charlie McCreevy. “I believe that this recommendation strikes the right balance between ease of licensing and maintaining the value of copyright protected works so that content is not available on the cheap.”

“I will be monitoring the situation closely,” he added, “and if I am not satisfied that sufficient progress is being made, I will take tougher action.”

The Recommendation (8-page / 35KB PDF)

Copyright © 2005, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Nokia offers 'voluntary retirement' to 6,000+ Indian employees
India's 'predictability and stability' cited as mobe-maker's tax payment deadline nears
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
France bans managers from contacting workers outside business hours
«Email? Mais non ... il est plus tard que six heures du soir!»
Adrian Mole author Sue Townsend dies at 68
RIP Blighty's best-selling author of the 1980s
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Analysts: Bright future for smartphones, tablets, wearables
There's plenty of good money to be made if you stay out of the PC market
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.