The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.
Privacy groups and national authorities express concerns over content upload filtering
Close to 60 civil rights groups have written an open letter to senior European lawmakers detailing their concerns over the European Commission’s (EC) new copyright legislation that would impose a new responsibility on internet platforms to filter content that their users upload. One year ago, the EC published a comprehensive set of reforms aimed at overhauling the current rules on copyright, to increase cultural diversity in Europe and in the content available online. Included in the plans was an obligation to deploy technology to automatically detect songs or audiovisual works that right holders have identified and agreed with the platforms either to authorize or remove. The privacy groups believe the proposal would impose excessive restrictions on citizens’ fundamental rights and would contradict existing rules and the case law of the European Court of Justice (ECJ). Some national authorities have also questioned the legitimacy of automated upload blocking.
Global royalty collections see positive year, with growth in reported and constant currency rates
Combined royalty collections for the world’s 20 biggest collective management organizations (CMOs) that have published results increased last year at both reported and constant currency exchange rates. With several of the top 20 CMOs reporting their financial results in euros, the stability of the currency against the dollar resulted in closer growth rates for the two currency measures than the previous CMO financials review. However, currency rates still affected the performance of some CMOs. French authors’ society SACEM remained the leader in terms of total revenue. Seventeen of the top 20 CMOs reported rises in collections. The US is the clear leader in terms of authors’ collections at country level, with combined collections by CMOs ASCAP and BMI topping the $2bn mark. Europe was the biggest region, accounting for more than half of the global total.
China’s streaming success set to usher in a sturdier music market
Once synonymous with piracy, the Chinese music market has entered the mainstream in recent years thanks to the popularity of digital content and smartphones among young Chinese users. The prime mover has been Tencent Music Entertainment (TME), which has built its business on the back of its parent company’s online strength, as well as on its exclusive rights deals. Having aggressively built its dominant position, TME is now looking to work together with rivals and artists to help develop a healthier local music market.
Chile country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Chile music industry report. Chile is South America’s fifth-largest recorded-music market. Following an almost decade-long decline, record-company earnings have been registering impressive annual growth since 2012. Sharp growth in streaming income saw trade earnings from digital sales overtake that from physical formats in 2015, and the gap widened significantly in 2016.
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