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Posted inNews

Article 13 approved by European Parliament by 438 votes to 226

MEPs have voted to pass the much-discussed Article 13 of the European Copyright Directive. Of the 751 politicians voting on the directive today in Strasbourg, 438 voted in favour, 226 against and 39 abstained.

The news is already being celebrated by music rightsholders and their representative bodies, but will come as a blow to the technology companies and activists who had been campaigning against the proposal.

We’ll be covering reactions to the news in the coming hours here, so check back on this story regularly for updates.

Posted inNews

Despite Article 13 support, Paul McCartney to play YouTube gig

Sir Paul McCartney has a new album coming out, ‘Egypt Station’, and like a growing number of artists he’s promoting it through partnerships with various streaming services.

YouTube included: Sir Paul will be livestreaming a performance on his YouTube channel this Friday (7 September) promising to play Beatles, Wings and solo classics as well as his new material.

It should boost his channel subscribers beyond the current 392,000 figure, and bag some press headlines around the new album to boot, so it’s a sensible move.

Posted inNews

UK MPs weigh in over ‘platform or publisher?’ debate

The UK’s House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee has published an interim report exploring the threats to democracy posed by ‘fake news’ and hyper-targeted advertising designed to swing election votes.

It includes calls for companies like Facebook and Google to be more regulated, including a body to audit the way their recommendation algorithms work. The report also tackled the familiar (especially to music rightsholders) debate over whether tech companies should be treated as mere platforms, or publishers.

Posted inNews

European copyright vote stalls progress of Article 13

If this week has felt like a bit too much European policymaking at the top of this bulletin, apologies. But the debate around the draft Copyright Directive, and particularly its Article 13, is something that’s being watched closely around the world. By now you may know that yesterday’s vote in the European Parliament did not go the way much of the music industry and its allies had hoped: 318 votes to reject the directive in its current form, versus 278 to approve it, with 31 abstentions.

Reactions from the music industry fall into two camps: those rolling up their sleeves for the next stage of amending the proposed legislation before it gets a full debate in the European Parliament, and those training their fire on technology companies (Google in particular) and decrying yesterday’s vote as a wasted opportunity.

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Article 13 lobbying goes up to the wire – so what next?

Today sees the crucial European Parliament vote on the proposed new EU Copyright Directive, including the ‘Article 13’ that’s been the focus of so much attention for the music industry. Lobbying around the proposed approach to safe harbours and copyright-filtering requirements for online platforms of all sizes has continued up to the wire, with the music industry waiting until yesterday to deploy one of its key weapons: a Beatle.

“Unfortunately, the value gap jeopardises the music ecosystem. We need an Internet that is fair and sustainable for all. But today some User Upload Content platforms refuse to compensate artists and all music creators fairly for their work, while they exploit it for their own profit,” suggested the letter signed by Sir Paul McCartney, and published through the IFPI for the attention of European politicians.

Posted inNews

Pressure builds ahead of European vote on safe harbour

Music rightsholders in Europe are preparing for the latest stage of lobbying in the debate over safe-harbour reform – ahead of a crucial vote in the European Parliament next week. PRS for Music is flagging up a ‘Make Internet Fair’petition that’s been signed (so far) by more than 32,000 creators, songwriters included.

“This is about copyright and specifically about the rights of creators versus those of the Internet giants; it is about the way the Internet functions as a fair and efficient marketplace. It is a debate we must win if we want to secure our creative community into the next decade,” said PRS CEO Robert Ashcroft.