Collective licensing is essential. It ensures fundamental income for composers, artists and performers as well as music publishers and record labels. Currently record labels, in particular independents/SMEs, face serious difficulties in obtaining public performance, broadcast and other revenues that are due to them in Europe and elsewhere outside their home territory. Apart from some bilateral agreements, these revenues simply do not flow in Europe and internationally. Even established companies in the business for 30 years face multiple barriers. There is no system of reciprocity among record company collecting societies. Record companies have to register with each society, working in over 20 languages, with different rules.
This effectively makes it impossible for most independents/SMEs to collect their public performance, broadcast and other revenues outside their home territories. This is a clear barrier to mobility and free movement.
Further information on IMPALA’s contribution to the EC’s hearing on collective licensing can be seen here.
The Code of Conduct for Collecting Societies
IMPALA launched its Code of Conduct for collecting societies in early 2010. The aim of IMPALA’s code of conduct is to encourage record company collecting societies to solve these problems via common standards to key issues such as membership, governance, transparency and equal treatment of SMEs active as record producers. The overall objective is to ensure proper flow of revenues across borders in Europe and internationally.
The code has been submitted to the EC, and also to WIPO which looks after copyright on a world basis and which is increasingly interested in this type of question.
In the Code, IMPALA is asking:
- to get rid of processes which discriminate against smaller labels in practice (membership rules, unclaimed monies,etc)
- to make sure money spent on anti-piracy benefits all the members of the collecting society, and
- to set aside a minimum of 5% of society revenues to support new talent (as included in our Action Plan for Finance).
The full Code of Conduct for Collecting Societies can be downloaded here - IMPALA Code of Conduct for Collecting Societies PDF.pdf