Tagged: collection society

New issue of Music & Copyright with Mexico country report

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

Final judgment and permanent injunction filing details the end of Youtube-mp3.org
Almost exactly one year ago, the RIAA, on behalf of the three major record companies and some of their subsidiary labels, filed legal action at the US District Court for the Central District of California against the operator of stream-ripping website Youtube-mp3.org. Now, following a new filing, this time detailing a final judgment and permanent injunction against the site and its owner, the RIAA along with the IFPI and BPI have confirmed in a joint statement that the site has shut down. The filing detailed the terms agreed by Youtube-mp3.org’s creator, Philip Matesanz. Although the permanent closure of the world’s most popular stream-ripping service is good news for the music industry, stream-ripping has become the most prevalent form of music piracy in the online world, and there are plenty of other services that are likely to take over Youtube-mp3.org’s role in facilitating the popular form of music piracy.

Italy’s recorded-music sector suffers midyear fall in CD album sales and audio subscriptions
New figures published by Italian music trade association FIMI suggest that the country might well be heading for a full-year contraction after four consecutive years of growth. Just two years ago, FIMI was reporting growth of more than 20% in the first half of 2015, with sales of both physical and digital formats and services rising sharply. Last year, paid subscriptions just managed to offset the fall in both CD album and download sales. However, in the first half of this year, trade earnings from paid subscriptions were flat, so the drop in CD album sales has resulted in lower overall trade revenue. FIMI commented that the reason for the slowdown was largely to do with the lack of any big-name Italian artist releases. The trade association also highlighted the positive six-month period for vinyl.

Technology developments set to enhance the digital music experience
Disruption is an overused word, but many in the music industry know first hand what it means, having taken a hammering from file-sharing technology and aggressive pirating operations in recent times. Piracy remains an issue for the industry, but the outlook is no longer as negative thanks to the popularity of streaming services: Consumers may no longer want to own music, but an increasing number are demonstrating that they are prepared to make regular subscription payments to gain access to millions of tracks. However, like all new technology, streaming is a double-edged sword. Taking its cue from Ovum’s consumer Trends to Watch report series, this research note picks out three key trends – two tech innovations and one relating to legislation – that music industry players should keep an eye on in 2018.

Mexico country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Mexico music industry report. Mexico is South America’s second-largest recorded-music market and the continent’s biggest live market. Following two years of decline in 2013 and 2014, record company earnings from recorded music sales and services registered impressive growth in 2015 and 2016, with the rise driven by a big jump in music subscriptions. Mexico crossed the digital tipping point in 2014, and the gap between digital and physical has subsequently widened significantly.

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Music & Copyright is published by Ovum.

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New issue of Music & Copyright

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

Recorded-music sales in Japan head for lengthy period of stagnation
The Japanese music trade association, the RIAJ, has reported midyear production figures for both physical music formats and trade earnings from the sale of digital music in the country. Combined revenue from physical audio and music video production was down year on year, while total record company earnings from digital sales and services have increased. Taking the two together, the total value of recorded-music revenue in Japan in the first six months of this year decreased at a slightly higher rate than in the prior-year period. This is concerning for the country’s record companies in that physical formats still account for the lion’s share of total trade earnings. Although digital sales have gained momentum in the last few years from rising subscription sales, the gains are not enough to counter the declines in CD album and singles sales.

New report details the status of digital music in the Nordics
The four Nordic countries of Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden have become synonymous with the shift in the distribution of recorded music from ownership to access. Sweden is home to the world’s biggest audio subscription service, Spotify, while Tidal was created from the acquisition of Swedish company Aspiro, owner of the Norway-based service WiMP Music. In all four countries, streaming accounts for the majority of trade earnings from recorded music and all ownership formats are rapidly disappearing. A new report published by the Polaris Nordic alliance has shed light on the digital music consumption habits of consumers in the Nordic countries and has identified which services are the most popular. It also profiles the behaviors and attitudes of service users across the region.

Third straight year of rising rights collections for SIAE
Italian authors’ society SIAE has reported a third successive year of revenue growth. In July, the society released topline figures, but the publication of its annual report provides more detail on SIAE’s 2016 business year. The overall rate of growth for collections including private copying remuneration and other intermediation services was lower than the previous year. However, the total was the highest for SIAE since its foundation. SIAE said authors’ earnings from music repertoire edged up last year, with growth also reported for collections from dramatic works, movies, and literary works and visual arts. Digital-music collections rose for the fourth consecutive year, but as a share of total income, the collection source is still low.

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Music & Copyright is published by Ovum.

New issue of Music & Copyright with Germany country report

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

EU committees’ views on upload filters highlight differing attitudes to modern copyright protection
The European Commission (EC) is currently pushing forward with a set of reforms aimed at overhauling the current rules on copyright. Delivered by President Jean-Claude Junker as part of his “state of the union” address at the European Parliament last year, the proposals formed part of the EC’s Digital Single Market initiative. Included in the proposals were new rules on how video-sharing platforms remunerate the online exploitation of creators’ works and how those works are protected. Controversially, Junker introduced the idea that the video platforms will have an obligation to deploy effective means to automatically detect songs or audiovisual works that rights holders have identified. In July, two committees involved in the process of establishing the precise wording of the copyright reforms gave their opinions on the role of upload filters to weed out copyright-infringing content. The subsequent views and opinions from industry stakeholders and rights activists suggest the road to a comprehensive and all-encompassing agreement may be a long one.

Stream-ripping research questions YouTube’s status as a valued partner to the music industry
New research published by PRS for Music and the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has concluded that stream ripping is now the most prevalent and fastest-growing form of music piracy in the UK. Nearly 70% of music-specific infringement is dominated by the illegal online activity. PRS and the IPO jointly commissioned two separate studies to understand the impact of stream ripping on the UK market and on online consumer behavior. The research adds to a number of studies that have highlighted how online piracy is shifting from websites offering access to downloads toward stream ripping from a variety of music and video services. Repeating previous research, PRS and the IPO identified Google-owned YouTube as the most popular source of content for stream-ripping sites. Although the majority of traffic to stream-ripping sites was found to come from individuals seeking the sites directly, search engines were also believed to be delivering a significant proportion of traffic to the illegal services.

HDS ZAMP reports rise in domestic and international royalty receipts
Croatian authors’ society HDS ZAMP registered a positive year for royalty collections at home and abroad last year. Although receipts from TV broadcasters edged down, rises elsewhere, notably from general licensing, live music, and radio more than made up the difference. Mechanical collections benefited from higher sales of physical formats, and income from digital music services more than doubled. Digital collections as a share of total receipts remain low, due to the limited number of services in the country, but licensing efforts are set to boost this number. Despite slightly higher costs, the authors’ society recorded a rise in distributable revenue last year and a decrease in its cost ratio.

Germany country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Germany music industry report. Retail sales of recorded music in Germany are on something of a roll at the moment. German trade association BVMI reported a fourth consecutive year of growth in January, with a big jump in revenue from subscriptions and streaming fully offsetting the falls in spending on CD albums and music downloads. Although revenue from access services now accounts for the biggest share of digital music income, CD albums remain the most popular format for German consumers. Authors’ society GEMA has also registered four straight years of revenue growth with total collections last year, topping €1bn ($1.1bn) for the first time. Germany’s live music sector continues to deliver stable results. However, there have been some notable shifts within the market, largely following the entry of Live Nation at the beginning of 2016.

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Music & Copyright is published by Ovum.

New issue of Music & Copyright with UK country report

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

Plotting the rise of paid audio subscriptions and the end of smooth lines and growth curves
Earlier this year, global trade body the IFPI reported that audio subscriptions were on course to become the biggest source of revenue for music companies. Digital as a whole overtook physical in 2014, and streaming became the biggest revenue generator in 2016. However, although the CD album was still the single revenue source when streaming is broken out into its three constituent parts, paid audio subscriptions is set to take the lead this year. The rise of the paid subscription from niche revenue source just a few years ago can only be described as rapid, and recent record-company results have illustrated the importance of access services to the companies’ bottom lines. As part of our annual look at the latest developments in the music subscription sector, we explain why streaming is now so important for the recorded-music industry and why the rise of access services is the beginning of the end for the well-established trend of straight-line growth and decline.

ECJ issues ruling on internet sharing platforms’ role in copyright infringement
The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has issued a preliminary ruling in a case referred by the Supreme Court of the Netherlands on the legality of websites and services offering the indexation of metadata relating to protected works, which enable internet users to locate copy-protected works and share them online. The ECJ said that making available and managing an online platform for sharing copyright-protected works may constitute an infringement of copyright. Even if the copyright-protected works are placed online by the users of the online sharing platform, the ECJ confirmed that the operators of that platform play an essential role in making those works available. The case was first brought by Dutch antipiracy organization Stichting Brein against internet service providers (ISPs) Ziggo and XS4ALL to force them to block the domain names and IP addresses of torrent tracker site The Pirate Bay.

Sharp rise in private copying collections boosts ARTISJUS results
Hungarian authors’ society ARTISJUS has reported a return to growth in royalty collections following a fall in 2015. A boost from retroactive private copying collections in 2014 was the main cause for the year-on-year decline the following year. However, sharp organic growth in private copying income last year, along with positive results from public performance and cable retransmission, took ARTISJUS’s total revenue close to the 2014 record. Digital collections were particularly positive, although they still accounted for a minor source of income for Hungarian authors. ARTISJUS noted in its business report that the focus of digital exploitation has shifted from downloading to streaming, resulting in much heavier administration in the course of the collection and distribution of royalties. Local VOD services generated around three-quarters of digital royalties, with international music services accounting for the remainder.

UK country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed UK music industry report. The UK’s recorded-music industry is experiencing something of a growth spurt at the moment. Three straight years of decline ended in 2013 with a rise in trade earnings from recorded music. Although revenue slipped back in 2014, the country has subsequently registered two consecutive years of growth. The retail value of recorded-music sales has also risen year on year with subscription sales and streaming growth more than offsetting lower spending on singles and albums. Royalty collections in the UK are also showing positive signs, with both PRS for Music and PPL registering annual growth. Live music continues to be the most robust leisure sector in the UK with tours and festival appearances still the most secure way for artists to generate revenue. However, despite the relatively buoyant stadium and arena sector, the ongoing decline in the number of smaller music venues is a cause for concern.

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Music & Copyright is published by Ovum.

New issue of Music & Copyright with Indonesia country report

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

Spotify agrees to settle US copyright-infringement claims
Spotify is settling a legal claim made by a group of authors that accused the streaming service of reproducing and distributing sound recordings without the necessary license. At the end of 2015, the artist David Lowery filed a class-action copyright lawsuit at the Central District Court of California, claiming $150m in damages because the service had failed to identify or locate the owners of certain compositions for payment that it has distributed, and had not issued a notice of intent to employ a compulsory license. This was followed a month or so later by a second lawsuit filed at the same court by artist Melissa Ferrick claiming the same copyright infringements but with a damages claim of $200m. The settlement will see Spotify create a fund to compensate class members for the service’s past streaming and hosting of tracks. Spotify will also assist class members to determine which of their music works have been streamed by the service and compensate the authors for any ongoing use.

Digital takes the domestic lead for Swedish authors and publishers
Swedish authors’ society STIM has reported record financials, with total collections and distributions to its members topping the previous year’s high. Collections from online and new media services were again the standout revenue source. Although the growth rate has slowed, digital is now the biggest source of domestic royalty receipts for Swedish authors and publishers. The previous leader was broadcasting, and a slight overall slip in collections from radio aided digital’s rise to the top spot. Collections from overseas remained the biggest income source for STIM’s author and publisher members despite last year’s slight dip in foreign earnings. Royalties from festivals and live music concerts reversed two consecutive years of decline and grew sharply. Collections from hotels also registered notable growth, along with music in the workplace.

Brands look to place music at the center of the evolving marketing mix
Brands have been quick to associate themselves with music-oriented social media networks as part of a push to communicate with young audiences. Video social networking platform Musical.ly has emerged as a favorite for a number of brands looking to market their product to younger demographics. Brands are also looking to create retail ambiences based on more tailored playlists. However, there are risks involved in leaning heavily on influencer marketing associated with social platforms. Also, despite the increased brand-associated marketing engagement, music companies and brands need to work harder on using music to get closer, and to provide something more engaging and useful than a mere lifestyle soundtrack.

Indonesia country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Indonesia music industry report. For many years, Indonesia has been considered a music market in the midst of development but one that offers great potential. The marketplace for creative content has suffered over the years from widespread piracy, with unauthorized CD albums on sale for a fraction of the price of legitimate copies. More recently, digital piracy has grown in line with internet access. Indonesia is no different than several other Asian territories in that unlicensed content is widely available. But, unlike most other countries in the region, it has made notable progress with regards to protection of intellectual property rights.

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Music & Copyright is published by Ovum.

New issue of Music & Copyright with Finland country report

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

WMG makes recorded-music market share gains, while indies extend publishing lead
Music & Copyright’s annual survey of the recorded-music and music-publishing sectors has revealed the changes in global market share for the three major music groups and the independent sector. For the second consecutive year, recorded-music leader UMG lost market share, while smaller major WMG closed the gap on second-placed SME. Increased granularity of published music company data meant for the first time the annual survey contained market share figures for music streaming. Sony remained the leader in terms of corporate control of music publishing, though its share has fallen for two straight years. Little change in share for second-placed UMPG meant the company narrowed the gap with Sony. The collective shares of the independent publishing sector registered the biggest publishing share increase, with leading indies BMG and Kobalt both making market share gains.

Domestic collection growth for SENA, but lower US income hits overall total
SENA, the Dutch collection society representing performers and producers (record companies), has reported a fall in total licensing income for 2016. Although domestic receipts were up year on year, lower income from the US meant international collections were down sharply. Similarly, total domestic invoiced licensing revenue registered growth, but overseas invoiced revenue fell. Distributions in the Netherlands and abroad were also down last year. General licensing was the biggest collection source for SENA members, ahead of broadcasting. SENA noted in its annual report that a joint-venture service center created with the authors’ society BUMA began dealing with its individual and collective licensing agreements from the beginning of last year. The aim of the venture is to create efficiency savings for the two societies.

ECJ backs Stichting Brein in media player copyright case
The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has sided with the Dutch antipiracy group Stichting Brein in a case concerning the sale of a multimedia player that enables copyright-protected audiovisual content to be viewed for free. The defendant in the case is an online retailer of a multimedia player that contained open source software that enabled video files to be played through an interface. The court decided that the multimedia player enabled a communication to the public of audiovisual content as described in the 2001 European Copyright Directive and so breached European law. The court also ruled that temporary acts of reproduction as carried out by the multimedia player of a copyright-protected work obtained by streaming on a website belonging to a third party was not exempt from legislation covering the right of reproduction.

Finland country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Finland music industry report. Finland is just outside of the global top 20 in terms of trade revenue from recorded music. But, despite its small size, the country is a market leader with regards to progress in the digital transition from ownership to access. Subscription services already account for around two-thirds of recorded-music trade earnings in the country, and this share is expected to rise further as the previous reliance on physical formats slips away and sales of downloads disappear. UMG took the top spot in market share terms last year, replacing WMG, which had been the leader for several years. Royalty earnings were positive, with collections from music use maintaining a well-established growth trend. The country’s live sector also registered a good year despite attendance at festivals suffering from poor weather conditions.

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Music & Copyright is published by Ovum.

New issue of Music & Copyright with India country report

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

Pay-monthly bundle opportunities for recorded music are expanding
Offering customers who buy one product a discount on another is a practice the retail sector has engaged in for decades. “Buy one, get one free” and “three for the price of two” are just two retail discounting terms most people are familiar with. Bricks-and-mortar sellers of music and other entertainment products have for a long time happily grouped together hard formats into multimedia bundles in an effort to boost sales, and this practice has been a central feature of most online retail sites. More recently, the rise of the fixed regular fee for access to music has given streaming services and communications providers, both of which charge for their services on a monthly basis, the opportunity to combine their offerings. However, consumers also pay monthly for many other financial necessities and household utilities. Although there might seem to be little connection between the likes of Deezer and Spotify and energy or water suppliers, the willingness of some services and suppliers to experiment suggests that the distribution of recorded music is set to experience another major evolution.

French recorded-music sales have an encouraging year, but medium-term concerns remain
French music trade association SNEP has reported a rise in trade earnings from recorded-music sales. Total trade income increased year-on-year, marking only the second time in the last 10 years that sales registered an uptick. Subscriptions and ad-supported streaming were the two growth sectors, with sales of single track and album downloads down sharply. The overall performance was buoyed by a modest dip in trade earnings from physical format sales, with digital more than offsetting the physical losses. However, physical formats still accounted for the majority of trade revenue, and there remains concerns over the medium-term prospects for the French recorded-music sector should the rate of decline in CD album sales begin to accelerate.

Graduated response and litigation not enough in the ongoing battle against music piracy
Graduated-response mechanisms appeared to have had their day, as evidenced by the recent closure of a number of programs, most notably in the US. However, content owners and ISPs have now joined forces to roll out a warning-notice project in the UK, with a view to steering primarily young demographics away from illegal file-sharing websites and toward legitimate sources. The efficacy of graduated response in deterring music piracy – as well as in promoting the use of rights-protected content – has always been contested. As pirates turn to innovative ways of illicitly disseminating music, the industry needs to come up with new responses to the threat.

India country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed India music industry report. India’s music industry is regularly grouped together with those of a small number of countries that for years have underperformed but that offer great potential to become major markets of the future. With the country accounting for almost one-fifth of the world’s population and with an economy that is growing steadily, tapping into what is a market ripe for exploitation is high on the recorded-music industry’s list of priorities. However, India has yet to live up to the promise of its “emerging” label, with favorable results one year followed by poor sales the next. Arguably the biggest problem for the country is piracy. Retailers have always struggled to compete in a market flooded with illegal copies. Moreover, rising internet penetration has brought with it increased access to unauthorized music distribution sites and services. There is some hope that streaming will be the way out of the piracy problem, but the road to greater sales and meaningful returns is likely to be a long one.

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Music & Copyright is published by Ovum.