EU Plans To Extend Copyright; Turns Copyright System Into Welfare For Musicians
from the what-a-shame dept
Just as we feared, the EU has now approved copyright extension of performance royalties from 50 years to 95 years. This is basically an approval to steal from the public. The public made a deal with musicians 50 years ago: give us music, and we’ll give you performance royalties for 50 years. The musicians accepted that, and it was a worthwhile deal for them. Yet, now, the government has decided to change the deal, remove that content from the public domain and give it to the musicians for another 45 years. This is, simply, bad policy. It encourages the exact wrong behavior: telling people that the public will pay them for work they did many many years ago over and over again. This doesn’t encourage musicians to continue working and it doesn’t encourage them to be fiscally responsible and save for retirement or anything.
At the same time, (again as expected), the EU has said that royalties collecting agencies need to compete, like they do in the US. As we noted a few weeks ago, this is better than forcing all artists to be represented by a single agency, but these agencies tend to do things in the name of artists that can be a lot more damaging than helpful in the long run.
These changes still require approval from the individual EU countries and the EU Parliament, so there’s still some chance that folks in Europe will realize that extending copyright on already created works is a bad idea, but that seems unlikely at this point.