EU Committee Ignores All The Research; Approves Copyright Extension

from the stealing-from-the-public dept

Who needs evidence when you have bogus emotional appeals? That seems to be the reasoning behind the EU Parliament legal affairs committee's decision to approve a plan to extend performance copyrights from 50 to 95 years. This despite a coalition of intellectual property experts who pointed out that such extension harms innovation and only serves to help the record labels. It also ignored plenty of research on the harm done by copyright extension. There is, once again, simply no good reason to retroactively change the deal that was made between the musicians and the public at the time of creation. This is nothing more than defrauding the public, by going back on a clear deal that was made. And, for what? The money (despite the slick marketing campaign) isn't going to musicians for the most part. It's going directly into the coffers of (you guessed it) the major record labels. None of this appears to have been addressed by the committee -- which seems to have fallen for the "we must keep paying those poor session musicians for a single performance they made 90 years ago" marketing campaign. This still isn't final -- it still needs to be approved by the Council of Ministers, but the fact that it's even gotten this far is troubling.


Reader Comments (rss)

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  1.  
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    Ima Fish, Feb 13th, 2009 @ 2:00pm

    "Who needs evidence when you have bogus emotional appeals?"

    I wish it was passed based on emotion, I could live with that and understand it. Unfortunately, the law was passed because the music industry was given the law it bought and paid for.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 13th, 2009 @ 2:27pm

    This had nothing to do with an emotional appeal. I'm sure that, just like in the US when it came to the Mickey Mouse Protection Act, these big companies made 'donations' to the members of the EU Parliament to ensure that the labels got the outcome they wanted.

    He who has the gold makes the rules, after all.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 13th, 2009 @ 2:52pm

    This despite a coalition of intellectual property experts

    Experts? You mean some professors who live solely within the "hallowed halls" of academia?

     

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  4.  
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    mike42 (profile), Feb 13th, 2009 @ 2:54pm

    Innovation

    If you think about it, the bill will foster innovation. If no one can perform what was done before, or any portion thereof, all the artists will have to come up with new things or be out of a job. But that's OK if they're out of a job, they're still young enough to find other work. It's the retiree's that we have to worry about, and the families of the deceased. Of course, the record label lives on to collect the lions share, but it's not their fault that they are immortal, is it?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 13th, 2009 @ 3:00pm

    History has shown time and time and time again that people when worse and worse laws are passed, people not only stop paying attention to the bad parts, the ignore the laws altogether. In the end, most people will eventually end up ignoring copyright altogether, even the goods parts of the law. Thanks to the push of these organizations, copyright will ultimately become a dead idea.

     

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  6.  
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    twowords, Feb 13th, 2009 @ 4:09pm

    Money its a gas.....

    As the song goes so goes the money and as we can see another way for the top 1% of the wealth to try and make sure it stays and continues to go to them. Damn the people that actually do the work and struggle through life.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 13th, 2009 @ 8:06pm

    If I build a house why am I not paid a royalty every time it is sold ? I built it !

    Seems some labor is worth more than others.

     

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  8.  
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    Sandy, Feb 13th, 2009 @ 11:01pm

    I'll tell you what a big part of this is about. Certainly the labels want to retain control, but collecting societies like PPL are on that bandwagon as well. PPL is a bloated, incompetent behemoth of an organization which sees this as a means to increase its members' revenue without actually doing anything other than hosting sham meetings where its CEO can pose for pictures with Kylie Minogue and tell the members how much they're doing for them.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2009 @ 9:19am

    Re:

    If I build a house why am I not paid a royalty every time it is sold ? I built it!

    If you build a house and rent it, instead of selling it, it is possible for you to receive the functional equivalent of a royalty. In fact you might be in a better position since rental contracts are usually for a limited duration, and the rent can be changed at the end of the contract.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2009 @ 10:56am

    Re: Re:

    So you are implying that purchased music is on a rental basis ?

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2009 @ 11:38am

    Re: Re: Re:

    No...that is why I used the term "functional equivalent".

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2009 @ 12:21pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    So, it should be mine to with what I please.

     

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    Alex (profile), Feb 16th, 2009 @ 2:56am

    Not that surprising, but has to pass thru plenary also

    The legal affairs committee, or JURI, nigh invariably takes the pro-rightsholder position on issues related to intellectual property (not surprisingly, as so many are, or were, IP lawyers, often working for Big Content and other big rightsholders). Therefore, this vote isn't too surprising. However, the next stage is not the Council, but the plenary session of the European Parliament (i.e. all MEPs), which is usually about 2 months after the committee vote. And MEPs as a whole tend to be much more sceptical than the legal eagles of excessive and/or intrusive IP protection.

     

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    Nelson Cruz, Feb 16th, 2009 @ 3:15am

    Yes, it's very troubling, but this was only approved by the Legal Affairs Committee. It still has to go to a plenary vote in the EU Parliament. So there is still hope. EU citizens write to your EU representatives!

    If it passes in plenary, I don't have much faith the Council of Ministers will stop this. Some countries have express reservations, but apparently the bigger countries now support it, so... it will likely be approved there.

     

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  15.  
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    Killer_Tofu (profile), Feb 16th, 2009 @ 6:07am

    Re:

    That was pretty much going to be my reply for:

    There is, once again, simply no good reason to retroactively change the deal that was made between the musicians and the public at the time of creation.

    Sure there is, the music industry pays politicians good money for these laws. Now the politician lapdogs must oblige their masters.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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