Copyright owners, in Sweden & internationally, comment on The Pirate Bay trial

Stockholm, 3rd March 2009

On the final day of The Pirate Bay trial, organisations representing music companies, publishers and composers comment on the significance of the trial in defending the rights of creators and creative industries.

The following statements were issued today:

Jonas Sjöström, Chairman of SOM (Svenska Obereoende Musikproducenter/Swedish Independent Music Producers Association):
“Sweden's independent music labels are building a future by licensing new, legitimate music services, which respect their rights and pay for their works. The Pirate Bay has no place in that future - it represents the old way of disregarding creators' rights and exemplifies an old technique which is now quickly losing its appeal and is replaced by new and legitimate services such as Spotify. Swedish independent music companies are in the business of making new, exciting music and believe that the music fan community we are servicing and are a part of, are tired and sick of services like The Pirate Bay who have no understanding or respect for the creative community and instead have their own financial interests at heart.”

Kjell-Åke Hamrén, Chairman of SMFF, the Swedish Music Publishers Association:
“Our songwriters and composers have mandated us to make their music available for others. This is carried out in various ways and forms, for example through the publishing of sheet music or through the recorded music medium. In both cases the respect for copyright is the most important prerequisite for the originators to get paid for their work. Without compensation the creators’ livelihood is unsustainable. It is therefore of utmost importance that licensing schemes and new legal services can emerge in the digital environment, while at the same time legislation says firmly no to grand scale businesses that are built on copyright infringement.”

Ludvig Werner, Chairman, IFPI Sweden:
“It is important to see organisations representing right holders from all over the world show their support in the trial of The Pirate Bay.  It’s particularly encouraging to see support coming from thousands of small, new and independent creative companies. That’s a powerful response to The Pirate Bay, whose propaganda very often misrepresents this as a battle between young and old, and between new and old techniques.”

Helen Smith, Executive Chair, Impala, representing independent record labels in Europe:
"A huge amount of the new music being produced today is coming from thousands of small independent music companies, and these are companies who love the internet and want downloading to be fun for the artist and the fan. But that just can't happen when there are services like The Pirate Bay making all our music available without permission, without payment and for their own commercial ends. If no one pays for music today, who will make the music of tomorrow? - that's why music labels need protecting from The Pirate Bay.”

Jens Bammel, Secretary General International Publishers Association, representing book publishers worldwide:
“International publishing involves many thousand publishers and countless authors around the world, all hoping to sustain a living from their writing and from sharing their passion for their works. It is they who need protection, against those like The Pirate Bay who profit, directly or indirectly, from acts of piracy.”

Ger Hatton, Secretary General, ICMP (International Confederation of Music Publishers) :
"Song writers and publishers all over the world are dependent on having their rights protected by law. The Pirate Bay is disregarding those rights and abusing the creativity of the people who own them. We are pleased to see the creative community taking a stand in Sweden and we hope the court will deliver an appropriate judgment making it clear that it is not acceptable to run a business based on the violation of the rights of creators."