New issue of Music & Copyright with Australia country report

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

Record companies look to benefit from the music industry disruptors
Record companies are not renowned for embracing new technologies – quite the opposite, in fact – but right now they seem eager to get much closer to tech start-ups to tap into their expertise. The music sector has realized the need to engage with likely technology disruptors at an early stage as a means of obtaining a degree of control over the way innovations are used, as well as of extracting value from start-ups that may well be worth billions of dollars in just a few years’ time. The real challenge is deciding just which technologies and entrepreneurs to invest in.

Digital gains boost global creators’ rights collections to record high
Global royalties for creators have topped the previous year’s record, according to the latest report published by CISAC. Total royalties collected by the organization’s 123 country-based 239 member societies grew for the third consecutive year and exceeded the €9bn ($10.5bn) mark for the first time. CISAC says revenue from digital uses of all repertoires has nearly tripled since 2012, driven largely by streaming subscription services. However, the report notes that digital collections are still held back by poor returns from video streaming services. Europe was the source of more than half of global collections, with music maintaining the tradition of accounting for the vast majority of creators’ income. In addition to music, audiovisual and literary collections were up year-on-year, while dramatic and visual arts revenue both fell.

BUMA STEMRA publishes delayed accounts amid calls for greater transparency
Dutch authors’ societies BUMA and STEMRA have reported a fifth consecutive year of annual growth in joint collections after three consecutive annual falls. Combined income for the two collection societies edged up last year, with gains in performance collections just offsetting a drop in mechanical rights income. Continued strong growth in streaming in the Netherlands resulted in a positive year for digital collections for BUMA. However, digital remains a small source of revenue for authors and publishers in the country. STEMRA’s income suffered a big fall in private copying remuneration, after the previous year’s total was inflated by changes in rates and the extension of fees to e-readers. The publication of last year’s accounts was delayed by several months after an audit uncovered several financial irregularities.

Australia country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Australia music industry report. The Australian recorded-music industry has shown some real signs that it is heading toward the end of what has been a long period of falling sales. Consumer interest in music streaming and subscriptions is strong, and access services have almost single-handedly boosted overall recorded-music trade earnings to two straight years of growth. In contrast to the recorded-music sector, royalty collections in Australia have risen year after year with authors’ society APRA AMCOS experiencing consecutive annual collection increases on the back of strong gains in digital income. Australia’s somewhat erratic live music industry registered growth last year after a decline in 2015. However, spending on tickets to live concerts and contemporary music festivals suffered a decline.

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