Feeds

MPs cosy up with Sir Cliff on copyright term

BPI tub-thumper in extension recommendation shocker

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Like Sir Cliff Richard, its biggest cheerleader and biggest embarrassment, the record industry campaign to extend copyright term on sound recordings refuses to die.

A report released today by the Commons Culture, Media, and Sport Select Committee attempts to torpedo the recommendations of last year's wide-ranging intellectual property report for the Treasury by Andrew Gowers, the former editor of the Financial Times.

Citing economic analysis from Cambridge University, he recommended no change to the status quo, where copyright owners are paid royalties on sound recordings for 50 years before the work enters the public domain. The record industry, fearing losing grip on its cash cow 1960s catalogue, lobbied hard and unsuccessfully to take the term to 70 years.

Releasing its counter arguments in "New Media and the Creative Industries", the select committee said Gowers had failed to give proper weight to the "moral right" of Sir Cliff to retain ownership of his 1958 performance on Move It. The committee is chaired by Conservative John Whittingdale, who has acted as a spokesman for record industry trade body the BPI in the past on its battle with digital music trends.

Since releasing his report in December, Andrew Gowers has said that rather than extending the term, his analysis erred on the side of reducing it, but that it would have been politically impossible.

As we reported when the labels lost their fight to sway Gowers, the next lobbying target will be the EU.

Welcoming the select committee's rolling over, BPI boss Geoff Taylor said: "We urge the Government to respond positively to the select committee and now make the case in Europe for fair copyright protection for British performers and record companies."

Away from copyright term, the report scores some easy points with music fans by adding to calls from Gowers, the Institute for Public Policy Research think tank, and the BPI itself for the government to remove the pointless restrictions on home copying. It also goes on to grind the BPI axe against Google and ISPs, demanding the industry funds a body "to examine claims that unlicensed material is being made available on a website" without delay.

MPs clearly think that by campaigning on major labels' behalf they will appear as the defenders of artistic heritage, a sure-fire hit with voters.

Seventy-five have put their names to a motion proposed by Labour MP Michael Connarty, which states: "This House notes that 50 years ago Lonnie Donegan's Cumberland Gap was No. 1 in the charts for five weeks; is concerned that due to the present law governing payments for use of audio recordings this track will go out of copyright at the end of 2007 and that the family of Lonnie Donegan, who would have been 76 on 29 April, and the other performers will no longer receive any royalties, nor have any say in how this recording is used".

The parliamentary moves to reanimate the debate have drawn consternation from the Open Rights Group, among others. It has a list of the MPs who have signed the motion here.

This one ain't over. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Kaspersky backpedals on 'done nothing wrong, nothing to fear' blather
Founder (and internet passport fan) now says privacy is precious
TROLL SLAYER Google grabs $1.3 MEEELLION in patent counter-suit
Chocolate Factory hits back at firm for suing customers
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.