Connected Research

Union policy research in the 21st century

Pan-EU music licensing regime to be established

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European Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said this week following the publication of the report of last September’s Online Commerce Roundtable that key organisations representing music rights holders have committed to concluding an agreement on a pan-European licensing regime.

Currently, online music retailers restrict music sales to the country in which they are based, or where the purchaser is resident, because of the complex system of copyright fees and restrictive licensing arrangements which applies across the continent. Furthermore, EU countries each have their own collection society for the purpose of collecting royalties in respect of the music of songwriters in that country, a percentage of which is then passed to the artist who has contracted the society to protect copyright. The EU has previously criticised this system as having established 27 monopolies.

Kroes said that she would ‘encourage’ the major players to ‘move quickly’ and would be reviewing progress at the next Roundtable that she would be organising ‘shortly’. Comments on the sections of the report on the licensing solutions which would foster legal offerings of online music in Europe are welcome by 30 June.

Agreement between rights holders on a pan-European regime would, therefore, allow music fans to purchase online music wherever they happen to be. Perfect for when you’ve just got the name of that track you’ve been hearing all holiday and which you know you’re going to have forgotten by the time you get back home…


Written by Calvin

27/05/2009 at 12:55 pm

Posted in Communications policy

Tagged with ,

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