Slovak Collection Society Tells High School Students To Pay Up For Music At Graduation Parties

from the they-have-no-concept dept

We recently covered a new report highlighting the parade of horror stories from "copyright collection organizations" or "collective rights organizations" around the globe. We've got one to add to the list. The Slovak Performing and Mechanical Rights Society (SOZA) put up a blog post telling high school students to register and to pay up for music played at their graduation parties. And this is hardly the first time we've heard about SOZA and its universally nutty plans to squeeze more money out of more places where people listen to music. Showing a near complete lack of self-awareness as to how the blog post would be received, it included this hilarious line:
A license for €15 for the whole event isn't going to ruin any graduation party.
Nor will SOZA not getting €15 for some high school kids having a graduation party ruin its operations. Thankfully, the Slovakian Ministry of Culture pointed out how ridiculous this was:
The Ministry of Culture appealed to SOZA, insisting that student graduation parties were for parents and teachers and could not be considered public events - hence, there was no reason for SOZA to introduce a fee for them.
Recognizing that even the government was against it on this one, SOZA backed down, while still petulantly insisting that legally it had done nothing wrong.

What's interesting here, however, is that it's yet another misstep by a copyright organization that's leading to even less respect for copyright, and increasing pressure to change copyright laws to avoid this kind of ridiculousness. Global Voices (link above) lists out a few examples of people speaking up and becoming activists over this issue:
Martin Královic thought [sk] it would be a good idea to register Christmas of 2012, his 50th birthday celebration (in 2038) and his own funeral with SOZA.

Martin Huba asked [sk] about the whereabouts of the money paid by clubs where he gave concerts with his band: as an author, he has been filling SOZA forms, providing an address to which this money should have been sent.

Badatel.sk thought [sk] that strict application of the laws was the best way to deal with SOZA. Using the Ministry of Culture's graduation party statement as a precedent, restaurants paying to SOZA for public music could declare themselves private clubs (with low entrance fees, though). Concert organizers and others could do the same.

In the end, this resulted in a rally at the Ministry of Culture, with them asking the government to cancel SOZA's collection license.

What amazes me is that the people at these organizations are so myopic that they don't realize the backlash to these kinds of actions. They're doing more harm to their position than good. Whenever we see stories like this, it just makes people think less and less of copyright.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 10:51am

    I propose the Listeners Collection Society. Artists need to pay for a license if they intend their music to be played within ear-range of me. This will ensure the funds are available to pay their collection societies when they say I've listened to music in a way that my purchase of said content does not cover.

     

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    sehlat (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 10:55am

    " it just makes people think less and less of copyright."

    I don't believe it's possible I could think less of copyright.

     

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    •  
      icon
      Baldaur Regis (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:03am

      Re: " it just makes people think less and less of copyright."

      The only way I could think less of copyright would be if it slept with Hugh Grant.

       

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      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:30am

        Re: Re: " it just makes people think less and less of copyright."

        Copyright could use a good slapping around, if you ask me.

         

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    •  
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      Rikuo (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:22am

      Re: " it just makes people think less and less of copyright."

      I was just about to say that, sehlat.

      PS. What's with the random sign-outs every few weeks? It does get kind of annoying...

       

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    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 10:55pm

      Re: " it just makes people think less and less of copyright."

      "I couldn't think less of copyright"

      Do you not have a logic filter on your language?

       

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      •  
        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, Nov 6th, 2012 @ 3:20am

        Re: Re: " it just makes people think less and less of copyright."

        Given the context of that to which you reply, I do not think you have a logic filter of your own.

         

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  •  
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    Zakida Paul (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:03am

    Will the money collected go to the musicians? Will it hell. People love to talk about how immoral piracy is, what about the immorality of these collection agencies who collect money but never pass it on to the people who deserve it?

     

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    •  
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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:13am

      Re:

      but but but overhead!
      They have to pay the monks who transcribe their records well, otherwise they might make errors.
      There is such a backlog of payments owed because they are still trying to catch up with the list from 1943, they are having problems locating the survivors.
      In the meantime they are all still being paid, and seem to not understand how not paying those they owe monies to might make them cranky. I guess they would go faster if their salaries were tied to exactly how much money they collects was paid out to those it was owed to.

       

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  •  
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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:09am

    If they don't cause more people to think less of copyright, you can't scream how you need more laws to support a business model from the 1950's.

     

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  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:11am

    Excellent. They've just crated a few more Copyright haters.

    Support for copyright erodes each passing day.

    I can't wait for the artists to have their "copy rights" degraded to the point of uselessness thanks to actions like these.

    And they'll only have themselves to blame.

     

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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    icon
    marychin25 (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:14am

    This is interesting

    Interesting story. Thanks for posting.

     

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    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:21am

    "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

    Putting up a post screaming "the sky is falling" over a mere blog post makes reasonable people conclude pirates and their self-anointed leaders are ninnies.

     

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      Rikuo (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:23am

      Re: "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

      Just wanna make sure, hasn't_got_a_clue: Do you still want us to ignore you?

       

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:35am

      Re: "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

      your posts makes reasonable people conclude unquestioning copyright supporters and their self-anointed leaders are ninnies.

       

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      fogbugzd (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:53am

      Re: "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

      It depends on who you consider to be the pirates in this case. Would it be the group of graduates who gather at someone's home for a little party, or would it be the people who are trying to extort 15 Euros from them?

      I do agree with you on one point. Yes, the pirates do indeed look like ninnies.

       

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      Zakida Paul (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 12:05pm

      Re: "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

      Your posts make me lose a little more faith in humanity every day.

       

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        The eejit (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 12:48pm

        Re: Re: "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

        Actually, they make me more faithful in humanity, because to counter ootb, there will be a genius who will figure out how to map the entirety of spacetime in sucha fashion as to make deep space navigable and reachable.

         

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      weneedhelp (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 12:14pm

      Re: "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

      Ninnies? Did you really call ppl ninnies?

      He he he.

       

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    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 5:37pm

      Re: "Put up a blog post"! THOSE EVIL BEASTS!

      Screaming "the sky is falling" over mere blogposts? Why does that sound famili - oh, wait. You do that EVERY SINGLE DAY, you nutjob.

       

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 11:23am

    When you start charging graduations I think you should lose your copyrights.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 12:15pm

    Nice to hear the the government stepped in. However, what they should have done is arrest the head of the organization and charge them with attempted extortion.

     

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    weneedhelp (profile), Nov 5th, 2012 @ 12:16pm

    Cmon now

    OOTB's and boB's need somewhere to work too. LOL ninnies.

     

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  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 12:49pm

    Piracy the final solution for expansion in the copycrap universe.

    Everything now is an excuse to make it illegal to do something that was legal before.

    Never mind that a granted monopoly by its very nature should be very, very limited so to not disturb the natural balance, screw that apparently, those people are blinded by greed right now and can't understand why so many people came to hate them so much. Respect? yah right, I don't see anybody respecting copycrap anytime soon.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 5th, 2012 @ 1:17pm

    and all that happens is, one organisation shuts and another one starts up. it will continue in the same manner until politicians wake up, smell the coffee and realise they are becoming less popular with the people because of their failure to stand against the ridiculously outdated copyright laws

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 6th, 2012 @ 12:52am

    another funny one

    In Belgium the collection society has also some very nice ideas.
    They decided that the striker of a Ford factory that is going to be dismantled had to pay about 15000 for the party they were going to do in the factory.
    Then it made the news, and suddenly it's not 15000 but 175.
    The artists that were going there, were going there for FREE.

    ....

     

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    identicon
    The Real Michael, Nov 6th, 2012 @ 5:05am

    The entitlement complex

    Listening to music by yourself? Ok.

    Listening to music with other people around? You owe us extra money.

    They're finding new ways to turn ordinary activities such as listening to music, watching a movie, looking at a piece of art, reading literature, playing a game or using software into a corporate money-grab, if not a felony.

    This world has become a little too corporate-influenced for my liking; their incessant greed is becoming a serious problem.

     

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    •  
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Nov 6th, 2012 @ 7:07am

      Re: The entitlement complex

      If everyone at the party could produce a legally purchased copy of the music played, would they still need a license to play it?

       

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