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First off today, Jennifer Baker at PC World reports that online music services such as Spotify, Beats Music, iTunes and Amazon will likely benefit from new legislation in the European Union (EU) that aims to streamline music licensing within the 28-nation bloc.
Dubbed the Collective Rights Management Directive, music providers will be able to obtain licenses from rights management organizations that are good throughout the entire EU instead of just in one nation, as is the custom now. However, to qualify to offer such a license, the management organization will have to meet some basic technical standards and pay amounts due to rightsholders within nine months from the end of the financial year in which the revenue was collected.
The law still needs to be formally approved by the European Council, which it is expected to do. After that, nations will have 24 months to incorporate the directive into their national law.
Next up today, Jennifer Odell at Offbeat Magazine reports that Jack White’s label Third Man Records faces accusations that it infringed some 800 songs when it re-released a collection of songs from Paramount Records.
Though Third Man Records believes that the songs, released between 1917 and 1932, are all public domain, The George H Buck Jr. Jazz Foundation, a New Orleans non-profit that focuses on jazz preservation, claims they own the tracks.
Third Man Records released the tracks as part of its “Paramount Wonder Cabinet” box set, which retails for $400 and features a custom wooden box. The GHB Jazz Foundation claims to own the tracks, which may still be under copyright since sound recordings were not covered under federal protection until 1972. However, Third Man Records says that they have not been provided proof of ownership but will gladly work with the foundation if they do.
Finally today, the BBC is reporting that several British organizations including UK Music, the Intellectual Property Office and Aardman Animations have teamed up to create Music Inc., a game for iOS and Android devices that aims to teach about the challenges in operating a record label including developing a band, selling music and dealing with piracy.
The game works by putting the player in charge of a small record label having them sign artists, promote them, have the artists compose tracks, release them and try to balance the books. Music sales charts highlight both pirated and legitimate copies of a song distributed and, on occasion, songs are heavily pirated but with few legitimate sales.
UK Music says that they hope the game will give players a “taste” of what it is like to work in the music industry and the challenges that they face every day.
That’s it for the three count today. We will be back tomorrow with three more copyright links. If you have a link that you want to suggest a link for the column or have any proposals to make it better. Feel free to leave a comment or send me an email. I hope to hear from you.
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