EU Telco Chief: Business Model Failure Leads To Piracy… Not The Other Way Around

from the could-they-be-getting-it? dept

Could it be that some politicians are actually figuring this out? Reader Arhac alerts us to the news that the EU’s telecommunications chief, Viviane Reding, gave a speech where she noted that it wasn’t “piracy” that was destroying the recording industry’s business model, but it was the failed business model that was leading to “piracy”:

“In my view, growing internet piracy is a vote of no-confidence in existing business models and legal solutions. It should be a wake-up call for policy-makers.”

Of course, it’s not clear what sort of solution she’s proposing — and it sounds a bit like she’s suggesting putting in place a universal licensing fee for online music, which isn’t much of an improvement. Luckily the Pirate Party’s Christian Engstrom points out the problem with where that thinking leads, by noting that citizens shouldn’t just be thought about as “consumers”:

“We are citizens… and we do have certain human rights according to the European convention on human rights which includes the right to information freedom.”

Still, given where things are in the US, it’s impressive enough to find multiple politicians who aren’t just buying the major record labels’ story that it’s “piracy” that’s killing their business models, rather than the other way around.

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Comments on “EU Telco Chief: Business Model Failure Leads To Piracy… Not The Other Way Around”

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Lindsay S. says:

This is a bit better as far as coverage goes.

“It is necessary to penalize those who are breaking the law. But are there really enough attractive and consumer-friendly legal offers on the market?” she mused, hitting on one of the biggest complaints from media consumers.

And through various other comments from her, it would seem that she’s looking for a middle ground, where there doesn’t seem to be one with two passionate, polarized opposite sides.

IAmTheLaw says:

“it’s impressive enough to find multiple politicians who aren’t just buying the major record labels’ story that it’s “piracy” that’s killing their business models, rather than the other way around.”

and thats a good thing, its clear that in the case of Viviane (Reding) at the EU level, and several of the UK lords after prompting form the NoDPI users
informing them of how they were being mis-informed by Phorm CEO PR etc thats the end users have several valid points in this and related subjects to be made….

its also werth remembering Yesterday Ms. Reding was nominated for a third five-year long term as a member of the European Commission (EC).


Over the past five years Viviane Reding has proven herself to be a doughty and determined defender of consumer rights, often the the chagrin, annoyance and downright anger of the telecoms industry in general and the mobile sector in particular.

Here in the UK at the moment we are seeing self-congratulatory advertising from the likes of Vodafone trumpeting that British holidaymakers roaming in Europe this summer will pay no more for their calls in France, Italy or elsewhere in the 27 states than they would at home. What they fail to mention is that the reductions in roaming charges and termination rates were forced upon them by Ms. Reding and that they fought against them tooth and nail.

“consumers have a lot to be grateful for as a result of her time in charge of European telecoms regulation, she has made many enemies within the industry itself who will now begin their political machinations to ensure she is forced to move to another discipline if she is to remain a Commissioner after November this year.

EU law requires that the Commissioner posts be re-distributed by then and industry chiefs in countries such as Germany, Spain and the UK are known to want rid of her because of the damage that her championing of consumer rights has done to their revenues, profits and balance sheets.”

“In my job I get to hear quite a lot about industry attitudes to regulation, the EU and the European Commission. The views are usually off the record, so no names, no pack drill, but it has to be said that the senior managers of some carriers simply hate Reding’s guts.

More than a few times I’ve heard her called spectacularly unflattering names and one (non-European) CEO peering in to the EU from afar rather crudely encapsulated a common attitude towards her when he told me, “I watch these people [industry heads] at all the big shows and conferences. Mention the name of Viviane Reding and you see a rictus of pain pass over their features like they’ve eaten a bad oyster. Others get this faraway and bemused look in their eyes, like a dog taking a dump.” It was hard to know what to say in response to that so I just laughed. The top bods at Europe’s mobile operators haven’t been laughing though, they have been weeping into their bonuses.”

etc ,etc, its clear Viviane (Reding) is a very good thing for championing the EU end users, perhaps more will finally join her and we may get some resemblamce of fair play and reasonable compyrights that we can al live with long term…

Warren says:

Non musicans are killing the music business

The focus should be on all those non-musicans wanting to keep their cut of the revenues that someone else created.

All those media moguls that never learned to play an instrument worth a damn or can carry a tune, even with a bucket, are the cause of the past 15 years of decline in the music business.

The business policy of finding/using a talent, hanging them money to produce a recording [that is actually an advance the artist have to pay back, not telling the talent of course], distributing/marketing the recording, “giving” the talent a percentage [extremely small, corporate keep 80+% of the revenue] and if the talent has no legal representation – owns the recording/music/words the talent created for the future.

Talent is left with only memories of the brief time of vision and left working as a dishwasher for a diner.

Steve R. (profile) says:

Civil Disobedience

Society depends on laws to add order to how we function. Laws that further that goal will be accepted as legitimate. However, when laws loose that connection to society, the laws are ignored. Civil disobedience of oppressive laws are a demonstration of when a “law” has gone over the edge of rationality into alienation.

“In my view, growing internet piracy is a vote of no-confidence in existing business models and LEGAL SOLUTIONS. It should be a wake-up call for policy-makers.” (emphasis added)

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