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BPI wants copyright extension in Europe

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 12 Apr 2006 21:35

BPI wants copyright extension in Europe The British Phonographic Industry (BPI) is demanding that the period of copyright protection applied to music tracks be almost doubled. Currently copyright protection on music tracks in the UK and the rest of Europe is 50 years. The BPI wants this extended to 95 years; the length of copyright protection enjoyed by American music recordings. In comparison, composers of music and authors of books have copyright protection for their lifetime plus an additional 70 years.
The EMI group should be particularly interested in getting the extension brought to Europe within the next few years as the company owns much of the rights to Beatles tracks. In 2012, the group's copyright will begin to run out. "This is a risky business. Nine out of 10 music releases fail. Revenues generated by artists like the Beatles pay for the up-and-coming acts of today," said Steve Redmond at the BPI.

Once the copyright for tracks runs out, there is no control over how the recordings are used. So if nothing changed by 2012, a lot of advertisements would probably have some of the Beatles' early tracks promoting products for example. "We operate in a pop music world in which the US is dominant. The UK provides the only credible competition to the US. So why should we be hampered by protection of just 50 years? And who's to say that the recording is worth less [protection] than the composition," said Mr. Redmond.

If the British Government were to help the BPI to this aim, the case would have to be taken to Brussels.

Independent Online

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