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ules out ‘Radio 2 Extra’
re to mming ences digitally and instead it should concentrate on the core brands which have very high awareness.
“We think fewer, bigger core brands with related digital content is the way to go,” he says. This, he notes, would include Radio 1 and 1 Xtra becoming closer aligned.
However, the industry delegation, led by BPI chairman Tony Wadsworth and chief executive Geoff Taylor, who met with Lyons last Wednesday, would not countenance any talk of 6 Music being shut.
The delegation told Lyons and his Trust colleagues that 6 Music is a good example of the BBC’s public service mission because it provides programming which commercial radio can not.
Wadsworth says the BBC has successfully built an outlet for artists young and old who are not being played on Radios 1 and 2 and the station’s value should be judged on its “cultural worth” rather than audience figures.
He adds Lyons was “open” to the delegations ideas and encouraged them to push their views in written submissions to the consultation, which closes at the end of May. firstname.lastname@example.org
My Radio service ments prepare the ground for considerable growth for Compare My Radio, which Absolute has done little to promote since launch, relying instead on word of mouth.
“Tens of thousands of people are now using it,” says Dickens. “Our ambition is to index all UK radio, then start looking at online radio, then this summer to start looking at the international market.”
Dickens says the service could one day even bring in money for the station. “I think it can be an incredibly powerful tool and it ticks a big innovation box for our company,” he says. “I am confident that it can form a very valuable part of our portfolio.”
Dickens, who has already indicated he is interested in buying 6Music, reveals Absolute is set to submit “a very detailed recommendation of what we think the BBC should be doing with 6” when the public consultation into the BBC’s plans closes at the end of May.
Industry ramps up activity around tight DEA timetable
Getting to work on the DEA
Digital By Robert Ashton
The Digital Economy Act’s move into law has been reason to celebrate, but the industry will now have to put the bubbly on ice as it starts the hard graft of getting the Act to work as well as rights holders would wish – or as near as is possible.
Although the DEA, with its antifilesharing measures intact, has been a huge fillip for the industry, there is still work to be done over the remaining year to shape a code of practice that will underpin the new Act and also persuade Government that rights holders should not be carrying the can for most of the costs incurred in notifying infringers.
This started in earnest last Thursday, when the BPI, UK Music, ISPs and other stakeholders tramped down to Ofcom’s headquarters near London Bridge to hear chief executive Ed Richards fire the starting gun on developing a code of practice which will underpin the new Act.
The timetable is pretty tight. Although the Act states it can go live two months after Royal Assent (roughly around June 8) the initial obligations can only happen if a code is in place – and that is yet to happen.
At its meeting last week, Ofcom made clear it has to provide that code no later than eight months from Royal Assent. There are two options – for rights holders and ISPs to thrash out a code themselves that is acceptable to the regulator or for Ofcom to draw up its own code.
But because time is of the essence, Ofcom cannot afford to sit back and hope this happens, despite one insider reporting that the mood between ISPs and rights holders at the meeting was one of “bonhomie” and there was no evidence of the frosty standoffs more commonly seen pre-DEA.
Digital Economy Act Timetable to action MAY Ofcom starts consultation on draft initial obligations code
SEPTEMBER EU notified of initial obligations code DECEMBER 8 Secretary of State approves Ofcom code JANUARY 2011 First notification letters sent out APRIL First of a series of quarterly interim reviews by Ofcom JUNE Ofcom starts first drafts of technical measures code JANUARY 2012 Twelve-month progress review by Ofcom starts leading to technical measures code
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Industr y gets its Act together Industry readies its anti-piracy offensive as the Digital Economy Act moves into law
Digital B y R o b e r t A s h t o n
A N E W C H A PT E R I N M U S I C H IS TO R Y is about to be written as the freshlyminted Digital Economy Act delivers a future where online piracy can finally be tamed.
Last week’s momentous developments in Parliament mean the industry now has the tools it needs to begin the task – set by Government – of slashing filesharing by 70% over the next couple of years.
It is amassive step forward for the industry, whose future would be bleak without the measures contained in the Act to tackle both P2P and non-P2P infringers.
That is something not lost on those who have fought a five-year battle to arrive at this place. BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor, who made tackling illegal filesharing his – and the BPI’s – number-one priority, believes the Act is not only significant for the music industry, but also represents an “attitudinal shift” in the development and working of the internet.
“Up until this point there has been no real mechanism to ensure there are consequences if music is illegally downloaded,” says Taylor. “It is a turning point because it marks the first step away from the internet being a place where the basic laws of economics and supply and demand are suspended.
“The idea that the economy can work differently on the internet and everything can be free, that argument has been lost.”
BPI chairman Tony Wadsworth calls the Act “a significant step in the transition of our business to the online world”.
It has been a long, hard slog to get to this point. Even last week there were late surprises in the wash-up, when deals were done between the Government, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats to push the Bill into law.
“The idea that the economy can work differently on the internet, that argument has been lost...” GEOFF TAYLOR, BPI
filesharers early next year.
Sharkey says for the first time the Act will enable the industry to use the internet to its full potential. “We needed the Act for the bedrock. This is incredibly important. Butwhat this is all about is successful sustainable business models.
“For me, now we must concentrate on reaching out to the ISPs because our future is together in developing the market.”
PPL director of government relations Dominic McGonigal adds the Act is a chance “to stem the tsunami of free illegal filesharing and allow the new legal services to flourish which, in turn, will allow musicians and companies to get paid for the use of their music.”
Those changes saw Clause 43 dumped (see inset) and the Government replacing Clause 18 (previously the heavily-criticised and so called “future proofing” Clause 17 that would have given the Secretary of State powers to amend the Copyright Act) with a less sweeping provision to block access to infringing websites.
TheGovernm ent, which hadbeen concerned Clause 18 would fall foul of Europe, moved in with a new amendment to deal with website blocking. Business Secretary Lord Mandelson says this will allow rights holders to apply for an injunction that would require ISPs to block access to intern et locations that infringe copyright on a substantial scale. It is a solution that the BPI CEO and others in the industry can happily live with.
Taylor says, “BPI highlighted the growing threat from non-P2P illegal downloads last year and we lobbied hard for a new provision to a ddress this. Website blocking by ISPs is the most effective way of dealing with illegal foreign sites which damage the UK market.
“We are confident that whoever forms the new Government appreciates that action is needed on non-P2P and that it doesn’t make sense that sites that are blatantly illegal should be marketed to UK consumers. It is reasonable that access to such sites should be blocked.”
However, as Taylor and UKMusic chief executive Feargal Sharkey both acknowledge, the new law is simply the first act in the industry’s moves to wipe out piracy and there is still much work to be done in forging ahead with new, attractive legal services and setting out a Code of Practice to establish details such as the standards of evidence and the content of letters that will be sent to
Taylor suggests the new Act is the “third element of a holy trinity approach” to tackling the filesharing problem. “This Act is the starting gun for a process that will reduce illegal filesharing. But we have repeatedly said and continue to believe this is only one element of the solution. Great convenient, legal services for consumers at an attractive price and consumer education are also critically important.”
He and others will now set to work alongside ISPs over the next weeks and months to develop a Code of Practice for Ofcom to deliver on copyright abuse. That is due to be finished by the end of the year.
C L A U S E 4 3 W A S A N E A R L Y C A S U A L T Y in la s t w e e k ’s w a s h -u p a ft e r th e C o n se rv a tiv es p u t t h e m o c k e r s o n it.
Clause 43: gone but not mourned f la w e d p ro v is io ns in Cl a u s e 4 3 . W e a r e fu lly s up p o rt iv e o f lic e n s in g m o d e ls to r e le a s e o rp h a n w o r k s , b u t a n y e xt e n de d c o l lec tiv e lic e n s in g s y st e m m us t be d ri v e n b y th e ri g ht s ho lde rs.”
Act passed: last week’s Music Week announces the good news for the industry t h e m s e lv e s u p a s a li ce ns in g b o d y a n d h a n d le m a t er ia l th e y d i d no t o w n .
P u b lis he r s h a d p r ef e r re d a s y s te m w h e r e r ig h t s h o l d e r s wo u ld o p t in , r a th e r t h a n op ti n g o u t.
Also, the thorny issue of who pays for a lot of this has still to be resolved to the satisfaction of the industry. In relation to the P2P aspects of the Bill the Government has suggested costs should be split 75:25, with rights holders picking up the biggest tab.
Th e G o v e rn m e n tw it h dr e w t h e c la u s e , w h ic h d e a lt wi th ev e r y t h in g fro m o rp h a n w o rk s to e x te n d ed c o lle c tiv e lic e n s i ng , a s th e D ig ita l Ec o n o m y B il l m o v e d in t o it s T h i rd R e a d in g la st W e d n es d a y . B u t its lo s s i s n o t ca us in g to o m u c h di s tr e s s .
P P L di re c to r o f g o v e r n m e nt re la t io n s Do m in i cM cG o n i g a l s a y s , “ W e w e re pa rt ic u la rly p le a s e d M P s r em o v e d t he
T h e p u b lis h in g c o m m u n ity h a d f la g g e d up p r o b le m s w it h th e c la u s e (w a y b a c k in its o r ig in a l C la u s e 4 2 f o rm ) b e c a u s e o f t h e w a y it h a n d le d ex t e n d e d c o ll e c ti ve lic en si n g .
T h e M u s ic P u b lis h er s A s s o c ia tio n , P R S f o rM u s ic a n d o th e rs h a d b e e n w o rrie d t h a t th e c la u s e – s p e c ific a lly p a ra g ra p h 1 1 6 B – w o uld a llo w an y o n e to s e t
H o w e ve r, M P A c h ie f e xe cu tiv e S t e p h e n N a v in is d is a p p o in te d t h e p a rt of t h e p r o p o se d le g is la t io n t h a t re la t e d to o rp h a n w ork s w as d is p a t c h e d w it h C l au s e 4 3 . H e a d d s , “ W e d i d n ’t s e e o r p h an w o rk s a s a m aj o r is s u e a n d I’m sl ig h tl y d isa pp o in t e d it h a s n ’t g o ne t h r o u g h .”
A consultation on this opened at the end of March and the BPI and others will respond because, as Taylor says, “We feel very strongly the position the Government is taking at the moment in relation to costs is wrong in principle and risks disadvantaging small labels.”
Consequently, in tandem with industry conversations, Ofcom will open its own consultation to develop a code at the beginning of May and will invite all the stakeholders to make submissions.
The code about initial obligations will cover areas such as how copyright owners detect copyright infringers, the standard of evidence, what is contained in the notifying letters, how many are sent and the mechanics of an appeal process.
This is expected to take around three months, taking the process to August by the time a draft code has been knocked into shape by Ofcom. However, there is the added complication that Ofcom will then have to file that draft with the EU’s Technical Standards Directive, which will take another three months.
Insiders suggest that by the time Ofcom gets the green light from Europe it could well be December before the Secretary of State approves the code and it passes through Parliament, meaning the first notification letters will, at the earliest, begin dropping on doormats around January 2011. “Ofcom have got to get their skates on,” says one source. “They need to get this code out in short order.”
In parallel with this, the Department for Business Innovation and Skills opened its Online Infringement of Copyright Cost Sharing consultation at the end of last month. This addresses how costs for the notification procedure should be split – currently the Government is asking for rights holders to pick up 75% of the tab – and the record industry will be pressing hard for this to be changed.
This consultation closes on May 25 and executives say the results of this will then have to be fed into the Ofcom consultation.
Once the first notification letters are sent out that will trigger the start of interim reports – from April 2011 – which will be undertaken by Ofcom and assess how effective the notification process has been.
Thus, by summer 2011 Ofcom could begin drawing up a code of technical measures that would be imposed on ISPs (see musicweek.com Business and Politics Focus). email@example.com
Faithless album goes to Tesco and iTunes
FAITHLESS’ NEW ALBUM is to be sold exclusively through Tesco and iTunes in a bid to reach the largest possible number of fans.
The move will find the group’s new album, The Dance, available in more than 1,000 supermarket outlets across the UK, as well as online.
The record is Faithless’ first in four years and will be released by their own label, Nate’s Tunes, on May 17.
Faithless co-manager Brian Message says the idea came up following the band’s departure from Sony. “When Faithless became free agents, they started looking at ways in which they could market their work,” explains Message. “We were talking to [Tesco entertainment director] Rob Salter one night and the idea came up. It seemed to be the most obvious move.
“Tesco is Britain’s largest retailer and iTunes the world’s largest online music store and between them they reach a huge demographic of people. This is the ideal way for Faithless to reach their existing fans and an excellent way for them to make new ones.”
The agreement will see Tesco exclusively control the album’s distribution throughout the UK and Ireland, with PIAS in charge of European distribution. Meanwhile, iTunes will have sole rights to online sales.
The supermarket giant will collaborate with Faithless’ own marketing team to ensure fans know exactly where they can buy the album from.
“We live in a time of unparalleled choice for artists on how to drive their creativity, careers and business,” adds Message. “It’s great to see such as important an act as Faithless embrace the potential that this deal will offer them.”
This is not the first time bands have teamed up with major retail chains for the release of an album. In America, The Eagles, AC/DC, Pearl Jam and Christina Aguilera have all engineered exclusive deals through major retail chains like Target and Walmart, while Simply Red signed an exclusive deal with Tesco earlier this year.
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NEWS MUSIC WEEK AWARDS All the coverage from the music industry’s annual awards bash
FEATURES WHEN SIMON MET LUCIAN Best friends but professional rivals, Simon Cowell and Lucian Grainge meet in print for the first time
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Lucian Grainge (right) with Music Week editor Paul Williams at the Music Week Awards
Grainge life: Universal
Arts Council asked to subsidise more genres of music
Industry eyes lottery windfall
Funding By Ben Cardew and Gordon Masson
THE MUSIC INDUSTRY IS AIMING to unlock millions of pounds in financial support for British music businesses by calling on the Arts Council to look beyond niche genres, such as opera, with its funding.
The Arts Council, which is set to invest more than £1.6bn of Government and lottery money between 2008 and 2011, has been asked by UK Music to embrace musical genres that fall outside of its typical remit of opera, classical and jazz, after the Council opened a consultation asking stakeholders to explore its f t f di li thi
Receptive and open-minded: Arts Council CEO Alan Davey
● the Arts Council should focus the majority of its limited resources on creativity itself (the creation,
f d j t f
Olympics and other Government bodies and public agencies… Some within our sector have benefitted from the services or programmes funded by these public bodies. But we do not have a sense of how that public investment is strategically impacting upon us as a sector.”
One major problem with unlocking funds, according to Sharkey, is the complexity of the way in which money is allocated.
Liberating Creativity states, “Despite some very successful schemes in place, the funding currently allocated by the Arts Council has developed into a complex ecology. Many in our industry would like to see the Arts Council make the di t ib ti f f di
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FEATURES MUSIC WEEK AWARDS 17 A complete rundown of this year’s award winners STALEMATE BREAKS 24 The publishing status quo is resumed as EMI triumphs HOLDING STEADY 26 The latest quarterly sales results POPWORLD: IGGY POP 29 MW catches up with Iggy Pop ahead of his UK Raw Power tour FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES 35 Simon Cowell interviews Lucian Grainge and we examine the Universal boss’ international success