With final voting on EU Copyright Reforms expected in the coming weeks, now is the time for AIM members to act and urge policy makers to back a strong EU copyright proposal both at the EU parliament and government level. There have been a number of drafts and re-drafts of the proposals, many of them weakening key provisions which will protect our sector. See the information sheet [HERE] for details and use the template email [below], adding your details and key points – personal statements, case studies and examples from your own business are useful in getting the message across and aiding policy makers’ understanding and help increase impact. All company heads and self-releasing artists are encouraged to contact the key officials listed here [LINK] and any of your personal contacts within UK government as quickly as possible – time is of the essence!
The key points to communicate are (see the info sheet for more detail):
- support for provisions to clarify the copyright situation for online platforms & rebalance negotiations with rightsholders (closing the ‘value gap’);
- support for reasonable transparency and contract adjustment provisions for featured artists, but without unfair obligations on SMEs;
- support proper remuneration but oppose calls for a new unwaivable right for performers;
- reject calls for a rights reversion mechanism.
Please also sign (especially if you are unable to send an email) this petition from GESAC, the European Grouping of Authors’ Societies who, alongside IMPALA, are part of the value gap coalition in Brussels: http://makeinternetfair.eu/en#petition
___ LIST OF CR REFORM MEPs ___
firstname.lastname@example.org (Claude Moraes, Chair of the Civil Liberties committee)
email@example.com (Syed Kamall, President of the ECR group where tories sit)
firstname.lastname@example.org (Emma McClarkin)
email@example.com (Sajjad Karim)
firstname.lastname@example.org (John Procter)
email@example.com (Theresa Griffin)
firstname.lastname@example.org (Catherine Stihler)
email@example.com (Ian Hudghton)
Daniel.Dalton@europarl.europa.eu (Daniel Dalton)
firstname.lastname@example.org (Martina Anderson)
Jean.email@example.com (Jean Lambert)
firstname.lastname@example.org (Siôn Simon)
Alyn.Smith@europarl.europa.eu (Alyn Smith)
email@example.com (Geoffrey Van Orden)
firstname.lastname@example.org (Baroness Nosheena Mobarik CBE)
Lucy.Anderson@europarl.europa.eu (Lucy Anderson)
email@example.com (Jude Kirton-Darling)
Amjad.Bashir@europarl.europa.eu (Amjad Bashir)
Ashley.Fox@europarl.europa.eu (Ashley Fox)
Clare.firstname.lastname@example.org (Clare Moody)
Permanent representation in Brussels
__ TEMPLATE WORDING FOR EMAIL ___
We are at a critical stage in discussions on the proposal for a directive on copyright. [We are following up on our meeting / previous letter].
We are writing to share our views as a creative sector ‘SME’ and an [independent music business / self-releasing musical artist].
We have helped make our local music scene the great success story it is today and we need legislative clarity so that copyright can grow and restore balance in the digital market.
We know that you will be getting conflicting messages – incumbent tech operators are keen to maintain their old business models. Hiding behind start up and digital rights campaigns, they want to use the opportunity to carve out a second safe harbour.
Let’s make no mistake – if that happens, it would be worse than doing nothing.
We hope we can rely on you to ensure that the debate remains focussed. It is about delivering a thriving digital market for culture, one of Europe’s main assets. It is about diversity and ensuring the digital market is open to new entrants. It is about jobs and connecting artists with their fans in a way that ensures if revenues are generated, then they are properly shared. We only have one chance to do this, so balance is key.
There is a lot of misinformation circulating about the proposal and its impact. On this point, we refer you to the letter to members of the European Parliament recently published by IMPALA, the European Association of independent music companies, which specifically addresses the myths around Article 13 (value gap). We are part of the IMPALA network vis our trade body, The Association of Independent Music (‘AIM’).
Our main points are: Regarding Article 13 (value gap), to ensure that there is a strong simple provision and that it is not undermined by a new safe harbour or by an exception for user generated content. We also want to make sure that articles 14-15 (transparency, contract adjustment) are reasonable by applying only to principal contributors. Finally, we would ask you to oppose any calls for a new unwaivable right for performers and/or a rights reversion mechanism. We believe such measures would be disproportionate for our sector where small and micro operators account for 80% of all newmusic releases and are the main investors and risk takers in music today.
You will find attached a brief note summarising our comments on the proposal.
[You are encouraged to add any personal thoughts and case studies in relation to any of the above points]
We feel that our voice may well be drowned out by other much bigger lobbying interests, so it is important for us to be able to rely on decision-makers taking a strong stance for culture and SMEs.
We look forward to hearing from you.