October music biz stuff (part 1)

Here’s my pick from the October music biz events and articles (part one), roughly in chronological order. There was quite a bit going on, I’ll finish it as soon as I can.

The Music Network Sony/ATV pulling its digital performance rights from ASCAP and BMI Sony has decided to negotiate its own digital rights, in effect competing with the collection societies. It’ll be interesting to see where this initiative leads.

Billboard.biz Copyright Alert System Coming Within Weeks The USA is implementing what they mistakenly call copyright alerts. The members of CCI can’t claim to represent copyright, they only represent some licensees.

IPO Minimum Standards For UK Collecting Societies (pdf) The IPO has published the standards promised in the follow-up to the Hargreaves Review. All the societies have some work to do to measure up.

Techdirt Trent Reznor Talks To Techdirt About His Unconventional New Record Deal, And Why He Still Loves DIY There was an amount of froth when one of the pioneer DIY artists signed with Sony (Columbia). Many people still misunderstand DIY—it’s not about doing everything, it’s about calling the shots. Guardian Is Trent Reznor a traitor for signing to a major label? (dreadful title).

Digital Music News ASCAP Refuses to Accept TuneSat Monitoring. What’s Up With That? The old manual process is error prone, everyone knows that. BMI have used Shazam and some UK publishers already use TuneSat. The question is why do performing rights collectors drag their feet?


6 thoughts on “October music biz stuff (part 1)

  1. The Music Network Sony/ATV pulling its digital performance rights from ASCAP – does that mean yet another license required to play music at work / coffee shop etc? Will their distribution rates be different? Will this become a potential differentiator for content creators?

    Billboard.biz Copyright Alert System Coming Within Weeks – Can’t claim, but probably will. Won’t someone think of the children? ;¬)

    IPO Minimum Standards For UK Collecting Societies (pdf) – Ugh, still working through the last paper, more homework :¬(

    Techdirt Trent Reznor Talks To Techdirt About His Unconventional New Record Deal – Seems to be an awful lot of sour-grapes in some of the articles about this (though not this particular piece). Guardian headline is just silly, but then, it does fall clearly into the “if the headline ends in a question-mark, the answer is no” category.

    Digital Music News ASCAP Refuses to Accept TuneSat Monitoring – why do performing rights collectors drag their feet? Probably for the same reasons that the major content creators have. They feel threatened by the change (or what the change heralds) and the standard corporate response to a threat is to batten down the existing hatches and then bring out the lawyers.
    I may have mixed my metaphors a bit much there but you know what I mean!

    • On the Sony thing, it does mean another license, direct from Sony in addition to the ASCAP blanket license, but only for digital performance rights. This particular license is really an American distinction, I’m not sure how it affects (say) foreign PRO’s collecting through ASCAP. They also have somewhat different rates within the digital performance sector (but then they do have a lot of it including satellite SiriusXM which we don’t in the UK). So, yes, a lot of questions there. If I see a decent article by someone who knows I’ll post it too.

      If other Majors, or (say) Merlin go the same way it could be a differentiator, and if it spreads things could get even more complex than now.

      Another thought I had was the effect on the Hargreaves stuff. Our IPO is targeting PRO’s (e.g. with the new minimum standards etc.) but if more licensing becomes direct the collection societies will be in trouble and lost as a regulated middleman. Sony themselves can’t be regulated in the same way as far as I can tell.

  2. I must confess I won’t lose much sleep if the collecting societies do go the way of the dodo. Particularly ASCAP with its only-pay-the-top-100-artists approach.

    • It would be a shame if they bit the dust just when there is some real prospect of making them work properly. On the other hand I do see (some) individual publishers doing a far better job these days (e.g. chasing royalties with TuneSat and then chasing the PROs to log “lost” usage).

        • Sorry for the delay Drew, I missed this one. I won’t believe it until I see it but change is inevitable at some point whether it’s positive or negative. In the long term I can’t see the traditional players resisting the demands of their artists and writers. Of course it could be a dreadful mess for some time.

Don't just sit there fuming, write something!