AfterDawn: Tech news

Playing music for horses? Pay license fees!

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 31 Mar 2009 4:14 User comments (18)

Playing music for horses? Pay license fees! The Performing Right Society (PRS) in the UK is literally looking and listening, anywhere and everywhere it can to find fresh new sources of license fees for "public performance" of music. It's no secret that typical business premises like grocery stores, restaurants, clothing outlets and everything else must pay a yearly fee if they have the radio playing for their staff and customers.
Fresh from hunting down new businesses in towns and cities, the PRS is expanding to anywhere it can that technically is required to get a license. Rosemary Greenway is a perfect example. For over 20 years, she has played classical music for the animals at her stables because she believes it helps to keep them calm.

One day she received a telephone call from the Performing Right Society informing her that she must pay a £99 annual fee, as playing Classic FM at the stables where there are more than two on staff apparently constitutes a "performance", regardless of the fact that the staff don't really care for, or listen to the music at all.

Rosemary claims from observation that the music soothes the animals, making for better working conditions for all. The stables are also located next to the RAF Lyneham air base, so the music helps to drown out the excess noise. "You would have thought that playing music to your own horses was allowable but apparently not," she said. "Especially on windy days I try to play it - it gives them a nice quiet atmosphere, you can only exercise one horse at a time so it helps the others to stay calm."

The PRS on the other hand are trying to clear up confusion about the fee. "Of course, we don't ask people to pay for music played to animals," said a spokesperson. "Mrs Greenway was only asked to pay for music played for staff, like any other workplace." Rosemary doesn't agree, and won't be paying any fees. Instead the horses will just have to put up with music just one day a week - on Sunday when there are no staff around but Rosemary.

It is not just Rosemary's stable either - the British Horse Society is reporting a surge in calls from stables who received the same demand, but were unsure whether it was a hoax. The PRS is doing its job however, as its goal is to simply get money wherever it can. Last year, the organization told charity shops run by the mental health group "Mind" to switch off all the radios in the charity stores until both organizations discussed license fees.

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18 user comments

131.3.2009 4:47

Obviously I think it's very cockroach like and ridiculous to make horse-owners pay for music playing for their animals etc and this woman whoring around the countryside looking for ways to find new people to charge is despicable , let's get this into persepective - these are people who run stables of horses which cost thousands of pounds a month to maintain - I can't think of a worse example for the article writer to use to say the fee is unresonable - what with the money they make when their horses race, these people are richer than most and they have an attitude to match.

231.3.2009 5:02

Originally posted by domie:
Obviously I think it's very cockroach like and ridiculous to make horse-owners pay for music playing for their animals etc and this woman whoring around the countryside looking for ways to find new people to charge is despicable , let's get this into persepective - these are people who run stables of horses which cost thousands of pounds a month to maintain - I can't think of a worse example for the article writer to use to say the fee is unresonable - what with the money they make when their horses race, these people are richer than most and they have an attitude to match.

Take it up with the telegraph, but I think you missed the underlying issue anyway.

331.3.2009 5:41

Quote:
Originally posted by domie:
Obviously I think it's very cockroach like and ridiculous to make horse-owners pay for music playing for their animals etc and this woman whoring around the countryside looking for ways to find new people to charge is despicable , let's get this into persepective - these are people who run stables of horses which cost thousands of pounds a month to maintain - I can't think of a worse example for the article writer to use to say the fee is unresonable - what with the money they make when their horses race, these people are richer than most and they have an attitude to match.

Take it up with the telegraph, but I think you missed the underlying issue anyway.
Not only did he miss the underlying issue, he's also an idiot.

431.3.2009 8:12

Oh the evil rich people!!! Domie, you are a fool, and you need to get over your wealth envy and look at the bigger picture.

ButI bet they hit up the plant nursury next to get the growers to stop playing music to that audience next. What about the idiots who play thier car stereos too loud,they should have pay fees too.

531.3.2009 8:28
varnull
Inactive

This is ongoing in this hell hole country.. Last year it hit the real depths... Surely public service broadcasting has already had the rights paid?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/edin...ast/7029892.stm

I can't find out if this part of the media mafia owe me anything.. at least the riaa are up front that I can't have my cash.

They don't call it frikkin Treasure Island for nothing.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Mar 2009 @ 8:29

631.3.2009 10:19
pphoenix
Inactive

didn't they(the PRS)catch a police station for this them assume that all other police stations needed to pay also?

These media fools just want to steal as much money from everyone, that's government being controlled by corporations for you though!

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Mar 2009 @ 10:22

731.3.2009 11:27

Quote:
One day she received a telephone call from the Performing Right Society informing her that she must pay a £99 annual fee
if i was contacted this way id just have one thing to say, Come and get it(bad word here).

this is ridiculous, a very bad idea. bound to cause anger amongst the mist.

831.3.2009 11:35
pphoenix
Inactive

Quote:
if i was contacted this way id just have one thing to say, Come and get it(bad word here).

this is ridiculous, a very bad idea. bound to cause anger amongst the mist.
they don't care as long they can hide behind the PBS, RIAA, MPAA tag without exposing the real companies behind this, they will continue to do what they like.

It's kinda like the debacle in Finland a few years ago when the local music IP organization demanded that taxis start paying a radio play fee since radio during a fare "gives added value to the service". AFAIK ever since most taxi drivers in Finland just stopped playing the radio... Double dipping, or more like triple dipping. There really is not shame to these people.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Mar 2009 @ 11:37

931.3.2009 13:23

Well, we're all missing the real answer here. She should stop playing the FM radio and start playing downloaded music. ;)

1031.3.2009 14:28

Originally posted by domie:
Obviously I think it's very cockroach like and ridiculous to make horse-owners pay for music playing for their animals etc and this woman whoring around the countryside looking for ways to find new people to charge is despicable , let's get this into persepective - these are people who run stables of horses which cost thousands of pounds a month to maintain - I can't think of a worse example for the article writer to use to say the fee is unresonable - what with the money they make when their horses race, these people are richer than most and they have an attitude to match.
Not a racing stable it's a riding stable big diff.

1131.3.2009 16:44

OK... The headline is funny... not true, but attention-grabbing.

This is nothing new!

Quote:
It's no secret that typical business premises like grocery stores, restaurants, clothing outlets and everything else must pay a yearly fee if they have the radio playing for their staff and customers.
Many years ago, I worked for a company that was a competitor to Muzak. Almost only reason we got business was because our company paid the proper fees, and it was otherwise illegal to play the radio (or records or tapes) in a store, business, or office.

That was before computers or iPods, so the only practical way to have a big playlist was to play the radio, or to get a Muzak-like service. We had two big reel-to-reel tape machines (probably at least 8 hours of "elevator music" on each) and there was a box that switched randomly between tapes to mix-up the sequence. The audio went out over "leased lines" (leased from the telephone company).

Most smaller businesses just ignored the law, but all of the big grocery stores in town and many of the restaraunts were our clients. Most "big stores" either had our service or Muzak.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Mar 2009 @ 16:47

1231.3.2009 16:59

The worst one for me was when the children were singing carols to raise money for charity and were told to stop or pay a fee for doing so. The ba***rds told them "it's not that expensive for a charity licence you know". I hope these people die a horrible death.
Hopefully in the future more music is released under the creative commons licence and all these blood suckers will be looking for another job. The best part of these people ran down their mothers leg and made a stain on the hospital bed sheets!!!!!!!(thats afterbirth for anyone wondering)

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Mar 2009 @ 17:00

1331.3.2009 17:10

Originally posted by ThePastor:
Well, we're all missing the real answer here. She should stop playing the FM radio and start playing downloaded music. ;)
You hit the nail on the proverbial head. Most classic music is public domain and can be downloaded freely and legally. She should just invest in a decent stereo with a cd player and tell the PRS to drop dead. She will also get the added bonus of not listening to ad's crappy dj's or anything else besides the soothing sounds.

141.4.2009 6:02
evnflow
Inactive

if the radio stations are already paying a fee for the music to be played..that's considered a performance, because it's being broadcast so that more than 2 people hear it..but then they are asking for another fee, ontop of the one they already recieved from the radio stations for the same music..that the station is a "performance"..so now if i was to have 2 of my friends in my car while listening to the radio..i would have to pay a fee for that?..i am correct in my assumption of what they are wanting..correct?..ohhh come on..hope they atleast try to give me a kiss before they bend me over..this is the most ridiculous thing i've ever heard of..the stations are already paying for it..it's being broadcast to more than 2 people..it's not in violation of any law..

151.4.2009 16:31

Quote:
Most classic music is public domain and can be downloaded freely and legally.
WRONG! The music is public domain, but not the recording or performance.

If you want to whip out your violin and record a classical piece, or play it publicly, then no, you don't have to pay for the rights to the song. You can sell the CD, or play the music for your horses and your staff, and you don't have to pay any fees. Nobody can make a copy of your violin performance/recording without your permission.

Quote:
..so now if i was to have 2 of my friends in my car while listening to the radio..i would have to pay a fee for that?...
Of course not! But if you own a coffee shop, you have to pay to play the radio in there. I don't know exactly where the legal line is drawn, but if you play the radio in a restaurant or business, you owe additional fees. I live in a mobile home park and they shut-down the weekly (free) "movie night" in the clubhouse (tapes & DVDs played on a big-screen TV). You can invite a bunch of friends over to watch a movie in your home, but apparently you can't do the same thing in a "public venue".

Quote:
this is the most ridiculous thing i've ever heard of..the stations are already paying for it..it's being broadcast to more than 2 people..it's not in violation of any law...
Most people agree with you! The law is ridiculous, but in some situations it is a violation of the law to play the radio without paying the fees. And, its not “more than 2 people", it's the venue.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 01 Apr 2009 @ 16:41

162.4.2009 1:44
evnflow
Inactive

@dvddoug..i gotcha on most of that..i understand that's it the venue part..just really don't see the difference in what place it is..in my opinion(i know really doesn't really count)it's still the same thing no matter where you are..it's still the same principle..you're still playing it for more than one person, no matter where it is..i just don't see why anyone has to pay a fee for something that has had a fee paid on it already..the lady isn't charging any extra for the music, so she isn't making any money from the music..she is playing something that is on the radio..it's just crazy how they try to squeeze money out of something, they've already squeezed money from in the first place..and i was being sarcastic about the car part..haha..just trying to show a comparison..




Dolla Dolla Bill Ya'll


172.4.2009 9:30

@DVDdoug,

I Can see how you might be confused but there are alot of classical mp3's out there that have been recorded and made public access. These are just a few if you a do a simple search for "free classical music"
http://www.classiccat.net/
http://www.musopen.com/
http://www.royaltyfreeclassicalmusic.co.uk/

As for how this law is enforced it's ridiculous. The only way they should be able to charge for a license is if the "venues" are there for the express purpose of listening to the music and charge for the luxury of hearing music. If there is no charge, then how are any laws being broken? Were the employees at the horse farm having garnished wages because she was paying for her iTunes? Were the horses being sold for the new Metalica CD?


If there is no money being exchanged for the ability to listen to music then that's that. The same could be said for the public movie night, if there was no door charge or admittance fee it shouldn't matter.

182.4.2009 10:10

mhahaha, what about all the car meets (cruizes) where hoodies pump out da bass for each other.. maybe they should make them pay the fee as well.

Its seriously sad when you pay for a tv/radio licence, then the radio station has to pay a licence by selling adverts on air to broadcast it then you have to pay another licence to let other people listen to it.

Using their standing anyone who has a music player/radio that has a loud speaker built in and turn it on should pay... just in case someone was to hear it, going to have to s0ding drive around in the car with the dam windows up all the time now... just in case.

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