Posted inAnalysis

Analysing the European Commission’s copyright reform proposals

This guest analysis comes from the Reed Smith Entertainment and Media Industry Group.

“Given all the fuss about Brexit, there is a risk that the implementation by the European Commission of its ‘Digital Single Market’ (DSM) strategy may start to fly below our collective radar. Meantime, the Commission continues to press ahead in delivering concrete proposals.

The latest – and arguably most significant yet – proposal seeks to reform the European copyright landscape through a new Copyright Directive, which was formally announced on 14th September 2016.

This is separate from the Commission’s earlier proposal to introduce a Regulation on the cross-border portability of online content services. If accepted in its current form, the proposed Directive would represent one of the most radical changes to copyright law in recent times.

Posted inNews

Music industry welcomes EC copyright proposal as ‘a good first step’

The music industry has cautiously welcomed the European Commission’s new proposal to address copyright in the digital single market.

However, the IFPI has warned that it is only “a first step” in the process towards tackling what it sees as the “value gap” between usage of music on services like YouTube, and the revenues flowing to rightsholders and musicians.

Posted inNews

European Court of Justice rules on infringing web-links

The European Court of Justice has ruled in a copyright-infringement case brought by Playboy against Dutch blog GeenStijl.

Its implications will be carefully mulled by rightsholders across the creative industries though. In a nutshell, the court has ruled that knowingly linking to infringing content makes an online publisher liable for copyright infringement, as well as whichever site is hosting the content.

Posted inAnalysis

Dancing to a new tune: what does Brexit mean for the music industry?

A guest column from Gregor Pryor, co-chair of Reed Smith’s global Entertainment and Media Industry Group
As one of the chief Leave campaigners, former secretary of state for culture, media and sport John Whittingdale was always likely to be of the view that the departure of the UK from the European Union would have limited impact on the music industry, and he said as much at a House of Commons event for the UK music industry.

Unfortunately, 91% of the UK music industry disagreed with him when asked before the Referendum whether they would rather Remain or Leave. For the most part, the reaction from those working in the sector has been negative.

There are two reasons for this. First, UK music is heavily reliant on international trade. Second, legal and contractual arrangements concerning music and its exploitation are already complex. Brexit will likely add many more layers of challenge and complexity, for artists, rights holders and music users.

Posted inReports

Report 393 – Frenemy of the state

Cover Feature: YouTube is currently the target of concerted artist and label lobbying at both the European Commission and Washington. They are demanding the end of the safe harbour exemptions that YouTube, and others, have partly built their models on as well as calling for higher royalties to close the value gap they believe is unsustainable. […]

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Posted inNews

Ed Sheeran, Abba and Coldplay sign latest YouTube letter

Google is under more pressure over the safe harbour protection that YouTube enjoys, with a letter signed by more than 1,000 artists sent to European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker. Ed Sheeran, Abba, Coldplay and Lady Gaga are among the signatories according to the Financial Times, which notes that the arguments are the same that have been put to legislators in the US in recent months.

Posted inNews

Startup accelerators invested $192m in 2015

Startup accelerators invested $192m in 2015. A new report by funding platform Gust and Fundacity has attempted to
quantify the investments of startup accelerators in 2015.

Having surveyed 387 accelerators around the world, it found that they had
invested just under $192m in 8,836 startups last year, led by $90m of
investment in North America, with $41m in Europe and $31m in Latin
America. It adds that 77 new accelerator programs were launched in
2015, with the most (26) in Europe.