Archief voor april, 2015

Streaming – het moet allemaal anders. Maar hoe?

Een goed stuk in de Wall Street Journal over de gebreken van het streaming music model voor muzikanten. Ik kan het wel helemaal samenvatten, maar het is beter het in zijn geheel te lezen. Ik ben nooit een groot voorstander geweest van het streaming model (of het Spotify voor <vul industrie in>), niet omdat het niet goed zou zijn voor de consument (want dat is het wel), maar omdat het voor zowel de uitgevers als de artiesten/schrijvers niet vol te houden is. Het artikel pleit voor onder meer een herziening van het copyright en dat ondersteun ik van harte. Maar net als met het auteursrecht hier in Nederland weet ik niet goed welke kant die herziening dan op zou moeten.

“For some time, performers a notch below Beyoncé and Taylor Swift have complained about the change in music delivery from CDs to downloads to streaming, today’s dominant system, as the progression has chipped away at their already-modest royalties. These gripes are legitimate, but even worse off is the nonperforming songwriter, who can’t go on the road and sell signed CDs and merch, and who takes home significantly lower royalties.

Desmond Child, the co-writer of Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ on a Prayer,” recently reported that the song had been played 6.5 million times on Pandora over three months, for which he had earned $110. There is also writer and performer Aloe Blacc, whose song “Wake Me Up” by Avicii “was the most streamed song in Spotify history and the 13th-most-played song on Pandora since its release in 2013, with more than 168 million streams in the U.S.,” as he wrote last year in Wired magazine. That yielded only $12,359 in Pandora domestic royalties, which were split among three songwriters and the publishers.

The entire U.S. system of music royalties is confusing, contradictory and inequitable, a monument to more than 100 years of haggling among creators, purveyors and users. To call it Byzantine maligns that great empire.

For one, a musical composition (“the publishing” in music-industry parlance) and its recording (“the master”) receive separate copyrights, with separate licensing systems. There are dramatically different rate-setting mechanisms: Broadcast radio pays royalties for the composition, but nothing for the recording. Digital media—Pandora and satellite radio, for instance—pay for both, but nobody pays for recordings made before 1972, which are not protected under federal copyright law. (They may soon carry a royalty in certain states, thanks to lawsuits filed by former members of the Turtles.) Hardly any music licenses are negotiated in the free market.

It has been 40 years since the last major overhaul to U.S. copyright law. Today’s technologies of music distribution bear no resemblance to those of the 1970s, and songwriters have borne the brunt of the ever-widening disconnect between law and reality.”

Zie verder de Wall Street Journal.

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