Prince and Universal wrong to take down that ‘dancing baby’
Copyright , Internet / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT Music publishing, internet     In an important decision, and one which will undoubtedly have an impact on how content owners deal with what they consider is infringing content on the likes of YouTube, the Universal Music Group have been told by the U.S. appellate court that they should have considered whether a woman’s 29-second video of her two kids dancing to Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy” was a fair use before issuing a takedown notice to YouTube. Cast your minds back to 2007 and you might remember that Prince persuaded Universal, his publisher, to take down a slightly blurry user generated video on YouTube of a toddler dancing to a snippet from “Let’s Go Crazy”. The mum who uploaded the video, Stephanie Lenz, was not amused. Prince had publicly said in a September 2007 statement that he intended to “reclaim his art on the internet” and Lenz was put on notice that her use of Prince’s music violated the U.S. Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and that if she violated it again, she could lose her YouTube account and any videos she’d uploaded to it. Lenz sent a counter notification, and YouTube eventually reinstated the video that year. Lenz then  sued Universal Music, arguing…

Bandier urges songwriters to reject licensing changes
Copyright / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT Music publishing     Sony/ATV boss Martin Bandier has written to the publisher’s Nashville-based songwriters urging them to attend a National Music Publishers Association meeting to voice concerns about new proposals currently being considered in Washington as part of the Department of Justice’s ongoing review of the ASCAP and BMI consent decrees – in particular proposals that would allow “100% licensing” by performing right organisations  ASCAP and BMI saying, “If either of these PROs controls any part of a song, no matter how small, they would be required to license the entire song without the approval of those who control the remainder” meaning songwriters could find their work licensed without consulation if a collaborator approved the use, saying “Requiring PROs to grant 100% licenses would be an unprecedented change to well-established licensing practices create widespread administrative confusion and potentially undermine a songwriter’s relationship with his or her chosen PRO,” he suggests. The DoJ’s review became necessary in the wake of both ASCAP and BMI’s rate court judges having ruled that partial withdrawals of digital rights were not allowed under the consent decree; publishers either had to be all-in or all-out. Bandier’s letter: To our Nashville based songwriters:   As you know…

France brings in new online music agreement
Artists , Copyright , Music Publishing / October 2015
France

COPYRIGHT Recorded music, music publishing, performers   The IFPI has welcomed the agreement struck by the music industry in France, aimed at boosting the legal digital music market and enhancing the value of music for all rights holders.   The voluntary agreement (the “Agreement for a fair development of online music”) was facilitated by France’s Minister of Culture and Communications Fleur Pellerin and brings together organisations representing French record companies, unions, recording artists, performers, online music services and others. They will work together to “help foster a sustainable music industry, diversity and innovation, clarity on revenue distribution and a fair value for music recordings.”   The agreement has been promoted by French government intermediary, Marc Schwartz, who was appointed in May 2015 to lead discussions on the development of the online music business between producers, performers and digital platforms. Universal, Sony and Warner have agreed to a new government-approved ‘code’ in France which sees them commit to new levels of transparency and “the fair sharing of value from the exploitation of music online”. The code will mean more clarity over the sharing of multi-million dollar advances from services such as YouTube, as well as the equity stakes that the majors own in…

RIAA and NMPA focus in on the value of music
Copyright , Music Publishing / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT Music publishing, recorded music     The CEO and chairman of the RIAA has said that the current notice and takedown anti-piracy process is both costly and increasingly pointless. Cary Sherman says the USA’s safe harbor provisions contained in the DMCA have forced labels into a “never-ending game” of whack-a-mole while sites under its protection effectively obtain a discount music licensing system clarly highlighting the frustration the major record labels and their Hollywood counterparts feel about framework designed to facilitate the removal of infringing content on the Internet. Sherman also commemnted on “the flawed licensing regime in which we have to operate” saying “Government-set licensing has enabled services like Sirius XM to use music at below-market rates, based on a decades-old subsidy that has long outlived its purpose” adding “Even worse, under current law, AM/FM radio broadcasters pay absolutely nothing for the sound recordings they use to draw listeners and generate billions of dollars in revenue. In a marketplace that values innovation, it’s ironic that it’s the legacy technologies enjoying government-granted economic benefits and competitive advantage” and “while the music industry has embraced new technology and business models, the beneficiaries of this broken system cling to this antiquated law that was enacted at…

Russian court orders VK to implement effective technology to block illegal uploads
Copyright , Internet / October 2015
Russia

COPYRIGHT Internet, recorded music     Russian social network vKontakte (VK) has been ordered by a Russian court to use effective technology to prevent copyright infringement of the recordings of two record companies.   The IFPI say that the ruling, handed down in the Saint Petersburg & Leningradsky Region Arbitration Court on Monday, is a significant judgment which, when implemented, should improve the environment for developing a thriving licensed music business in Russia. The IFPI is the organisation that represents the global recording industry.  It was supported by the Russian National Federation of the Music Industry (NFMI).   Universal Music and Warner Music had brought copyright infringement cases against VK in April 2014.  The judge issued an oral decision on 28th September, and the full judgments will be handed down in due course.   The court granted the record companies’ request to require VK to use effective technology to prevent the upload of their sound recordings to its service, meaning that VK must remove the record companies’ recordings and prevent them from being uploaded again in the future. The claimaints said 98% of their sound trecordings featuring in the Top 40 UK chart from the past seven years are available on…

Johan Johansson uses ‘making available’ right – to exit Spotify
Copyright , Internet / October 2015
Sweden

COPYRIGHT Internet, recorded music     Swedish punk artist Johan Johansson has brought a successful civil action against his record label  MNW (formerly Musiknätet Waxholm) for making his music available on Spotify without his permission. The label owns rights to tracks recorded with Johansson’s former bands KSMB and John Lenin, who existed in the late ’70s and early ’80s. Johansson argued that MNW is not in possession of the digital distribution rights to his music, and that his bands’ contract with MNW only covered specific types of usage and not the right to make his recordings available on streaming services like Spotify – and it appears the Solna District Court has sided with Johansson, ordering the removal of his content. Under European law, both copyright owners and recording artists were provided with a new copyright provision called ‘making available’, which was put in place to ensure rights owners could control the distribution of its content online. The Swedish Musicians’ Union backed Johansson’s case. In May in Finland the sons of Finnish guitarist Albert Järvinen, best known for being in rock group Hurriganes, had argued in the Helsinki Market Court that Universal didn’t have the right to sell two Hurriganes albums featuring their late father digitally,…

SAG-AFTRA announce new streaming deal terms with record labels
Artists , Copyright / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT Recorded music, performers     The major record companies have agreed a new deal with a performers body in the US, improving the lot of their members from label streaming royalties. SAG-AFTRA represents around 160,000 members, including DJs and recording artists in addition to actors, announcers, broadcast journalists, dancers, news writers, TV presenters and voiceover artists. The body’s members have now voted to ratify a new National Code of Fair Practice for Sound Recordings (Sound Recordings Code) for online streaming and non-permanent digital downloads. This covers money generated for performers outside the US, with particular allowances for label contributions to artists’ Health and Retirement (H&R) savings and the agreement includes all three major record labels, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group and Universal Music Group as well as signatory independent record labels.   The benefits of the new contract for the artists include ‘Groundbreaking’ inclusion in payment formulas of label revenue generated from worldwide exploitation of member work in online streaming services and as non-permanent digital downloads’. There is also a new provision for the payment of AFTRA Health and Retirement (H&R) contributions on a portion of domestic and foreign streaming payments; Substantial restructuring of the compensation system for licensing of sound recordings, streamlining and making…

Happy Birthday IS in the public domain
Copyright , Music Publishing / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT Music Publishing     In the USA, a federal judge has found that the song “Happy Birthday To You” is entirely in the public domain. U.S. District Judge George H. King held in a summary judgment that the song’s original copyright, assigned  Clayton F. Summy, who copyrighted and published them in a book titled “Song Stories for the Kindergarten” is now free of copyright claims. The rights to the song were bought for $15 million in 1988 by music publisher Warner/Chappell Music Inc. Any copyright now only covered specific piano arrangements of the song and not its lyrics. “It now belongs to the public,” Mark Rifkin, a lawyer representing a documentary filmmaker who filed the suit against the publisher told reporters adding “We did exhaustive historical research and none of it showed that the publisher owned anything other than copyrights to four very specific piano arrangements”. One of the co-plaintiffs, Ruypa Marya of the music group Ruypa & The April Fishes, also praised the decision as momentous, saying “I hope we can start reimagining copyright law to do what it’s supposed to do — protect the creations of people who make stuff so that we can continue to make more stuff.”  Marya, said she…

YMCA’s Willis triumphs again on costs claim
Copyright , Music Publishing / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT Music Publishing     Victor Willis, the ‘cop’ and a naval officer in the ‘70s disco group The Village People has been awarded more than a half-million dollars in attorney’s fees by a federal court. U.S. District Court Judge Barry Ted Moskowitz granted Willis $527,236 to cover his attorney’s fees and $3,034 in costs incurred during copyright battles to reclaim ownership of his share of the songwriting and the associated revenues in over 33 of the songs Willis co-wrote, including Village People’s huge hit “YMCA” as well as “In The Navy”, “Go West” and “Macho Man”. The right to reclaim arose when the Copyright Act amendments went into effect in 1978 and it meant that songwriters could terminate copyright grants to publishers and record labels 35 years later. The San Diego Union Tribune reported that the 64 year old songwriter said the award sent a loud message to record producers “attempting to stop artists like myself” from asserting their rights to let them know “there are going to be repercussions” and commenting to the two music publishing companies and music producer Henri Belolo who fought his claims he said “I had to put out a lot of money to fight him,” says Willis, who was…

Everyday I’m hustlin’ ……. but now rapper’s case is shufflin’
Copyright , Music Publishing / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT Music Publishing     Rapper Rick Ross cannot copyright the words “Everyday I’m hustlin’,” a U.S. judge has ruled, putting an end to his claim against music group LMFAO for selling T-shirts with the similar catch-phrase “Everyday I’m shufflin’.” Ross sued LMFAO in 2013 over their 2010 hit ‘Party Rock Anthem’ because it contains the line “Everyday I’m Shuffling” which, the rapper claims, is a rip off of his 2006 track ‘hustlin’, which contains the lyric “Everyday I’m hustling”. In her ruling in the Miami federal court, U.S. District Judge Kathleen Williams said Ross’s slogan, a prominent part of his 2006 debut hit “Hustlin’,” is a short expression that courts have repeatedly said cannot be copyrighted. Ross, whose real name is  William Leonard Roberts II, has alleged the Los Angeles-based electropop duo, made up of Stefan Gordy and Skyler Gordy, copied “Hustlin’” into”Party Rock Anthem” – which contains the lyric “Everyday I’m Shufflin’.” The hip hop star said LMFAO’s song was “an obvious attempt to capitalize on the fame and success of Hustlin’.” He also sued Kia Motors for using “Party Rock Anthem” in an advertising campaign. In the complaint, Ross claimed LMFAO also violated his copyright by selling T-shirts and other…

Universal set to settle digital royalty suit
Artists , Contract , Copyright / October 2015
USA

CONTRACT / COPYRIGHT Recorded music, performers   Universal Music Group has as said that it ‘shortly’ expects to settle a major US class action lawsuit with a group of artists, having made a significant offer of monetary compensation. The lawsuit dates back to 2011, when a group of recording artists including Public Enemy’s Chuck D, Rob Zombie, the Rick James Estate, Whitesnake and Ron Tyson of The Temptations filed a claim seeking additional royalties for the online sale of downloads and master ringtones claiming that iTunes royalties should be paid on a ‘licence’ terms – 50/50 split between label and artist – rather than on a unit ‘sale’ basis which applies to physical sales a nd generates far lower royalty payments for artistes. In 2012, the production company who discovered Eminem, FBT Productions, settled with Universal out of court in a similar case. Warner Music concluded an $11.5m settlement with 2,000 artists making claims on the same basis, and Cheap Trick, the Allman Brothers and a number of other Sony artistes in settled a similar claim made against Sony.   This motion for approval was submitted to U.S. District Judge Susan Illston and according to UMG parent company Vivendi: “This settlement transaction is expected to be formally approved by…

The Queen of Soul succeeds in obtaining a ban on ‘lost’ documentary
Contract , Copyright / October 2015
USA

COPYRIGHT / CONTRACT Film & TV, performers     Aretha Franklin has been granted an injunction against the premiere of the movie Amazing Grace as Telluride Film Festival, on the basis that the film violates her right to her own name and likeness, invades her privacy abd interferes with her contractual right of approval. The film,  “Amazing Grace”, documents Franklin recording the live gospel album of the same name recorded at the New Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles in 1972, with Rolling Stone Mick Jagger one of many stars in rhe audience. Aretha was backed up by a gospel choir and the recording is the best selling gosepl album of all time in the USA. At the time a technical error meant that the sound was never synchronised with the film’s images as the film’s director, Sydney Pollack, who collected over 20 hours of footage, failed to bring along the equipment that would allow him to synchronize the sound to the live pictures. The (silent) movie then sat for decades in a vault unseen, until  it was completed recently by Alan Elliot.  Pollack died in 2008. Franklin sued Elliott in 2011 in a bid to stop the documentary ever being made public. The…

EMI production Music launch Song Sample Amnesty
Copyright , Music Publishing / October 2015
EU
UK
USA

COPYRIGHT Recorded music, music publishing   The EMI Production Music catalogue, which contains thousands of tracks, spanning every genre of music, and which over the years have been sampled by artists including Jay Z, Mark Ronson, Nelly and Fatboy Slim, has set up a unique “sample amnesty”: Anyone who has sampled a song in the catalogue without getting the sample cleared will be able to come forward, declare it, and agree a legitimate release for the recording. The “sample amnesty”, believed to be the first of its kind, will run for 6 months, has been approved by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, which owns EMI Music Publishing. Alex Black, EMI Production Music Global Director said “We’re offering those labels and artists the chance to legitimise their master recordings. We will not seek past royalties from the songs created before the amnesty and we will set up a licence going forward on sensible commercial terms.” adding “The artists can then licence their tracks for advertising for adverts and soundtracks without the fear that EMI will come knocking at the door. The original composer of the source work will get recognition. It works for everybody so we’re hoping that people will come forward with something…

Liverpool man arrested in Top 40 raid
Copyright / October 2015
UK

COPYRIGHT Recorded music   Detectives from the UK’s Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) have arrested a Liverpool man on suspicion of illegally and regularly distributing the UK’s top 40 music singles on the internet. In a statement, PIPCU estimated the man’s actions ‘could be costing the music industry millions of pounds and depriving the rightful creators of the content’. The arrest came after a joint investigation with the PRS for Music. Police from PIPCU supported by officers from Merseyside Police arrested the 38-year-old at his home in Everton  before taking him to a local police station for questioning. Police seized several computers and mobile devices. The man is believed to have been illegally uploading the UK Official Top 40 Singles to various torrent sites on a weekly basis as they are published by the Official Charts Company, and PIPCU said he is ‘believed to have been generating significant advertising revenue’ through his own ad funded websites and other digital channels.   City of London Police Detective Inspector, Mick Dodge, said: “Today’s operation in Liverpool demonstrates how PIPCU are prepared to travel nationwide in the pursuit of those suspected of being involved in the illegal distribution of content online” adding “This is a crime…

Prison Office admits to George Michael leaks
Criminal Law / October 2015
UK

CRIMINAL Performers     A former prison officer has been told that a prison sentence is “inevitable” after she was found guilty of selling information about George Michael’s 2010 jail term in Highpoint Prison in 2010  led to five stories in the Sun.   Amanda Watts, who was arrested under Operation Elveden, pleaded guilty to one count of misconduct in public office. She sold information to The Sun for which she was paid £2,100. She was bailed pending sentencing next month. The BBC reports that Judge John Bevan QC told her: “You should understand the fact I’m bailing you until [16 Oct] to enable you to make appropriate arrangements. A prison sentence is inevitable. I’m sure you understand”. Michael spent four weeks (of an eight week sentence) in custody in 2010 after crashing his car into a branch of Snappy Snaps while under the influence of cannabis. Initially sent to Pentonville Prison, he was later moved to Highpoint Prison, which is where Watts was then working. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-34314806

Insane Clown Posse battle with the FBI back on
Live Events / October 2015
USA

DISCRIMINATION Performers     Insane Clown Posse have scored a court win in their ongoing litigation against the FBI, after the appeals court reinstated their U.S. legal action which was dismissed last year. Rappers Insane Clown Posse, aka hip hop duo Violent J and Shggy 2 Dope, filed a lawsuit against the US Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2014, over a report which labelled their fans as ‘gang members’ and  announced that they had gained support for their legal action against the FBI from civil rights organisation the American Civil Liberties Union and law firm Miller Canfield.   The band’s fans, known as ‘Juggalos’, were referenced in the FBI’s ‘National Gang Threat Assessment: Emerging Trends’ report in 2011, which said: “The Juggalos, a loosely-organised hybrid gang, are rapidly expanding into many US communities. Although recognised as a gang in only four states, many Juggalo subsets exhibit gang-like behaviour and engage in criminal activity and violence – law enforcement officials in at least 21 states have identified criminal Juggalo subsets”. The case was dismissed after the US Department Of Justice argued that the FBI cannot be held responsible for how information in any of its reports is used…

Hugo Boss £1.2 million fine a timely reminder of health & safety penalties
Health & Safety , Live Events / October 2015
UK

HEALTH & SAFETY Live events sector   Designer clothing company Hugo Boss has been fined £1.2m after the death of a young boy who was crushed by a mirror at its Bicester Village store. Austen Harrison, four, suffered fatal head injuries at the Oxfordshire outlet store in June 2013. Austen, from Crawley, West Sussex, had been playing with the steel-framed fitting-room mirror, described as being balanced upright like a “domino piece”, when it toppled on to him while his father tried on a suit. The ‘pop up’ store had been quickly converted from its previous user to house the Hugo Boss outlet. Monthly health and safety checks were not undertaken. Oxford Crown Court heard the 2,1 metre high 19 stone mirror had “negligently been left free-standing without any fixings”. An inquest at Oxford Coroners’s Court had earlier found that the mirror should have been fixed to a reinforced wall.  The Company had previously admitted offences under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999. Judge Peter Ross said  “it would have been obvious to the untrained eye” that the mirror posed a risk, and that “it was nothing short of…

Wine Bar fined £100,000 after liquid nitrogen drink destroyed a customer’s stomach
Health & Safety , Live Events / October 2015
UK

HEALTH & SAFETY Live events sector   A wine bar has been fined £100,000 after a woman drank a cocktail containing liquid nitrogen which caused so much damage she had to have her stomach removed. Gaby Scanlon, of Heysham, Lancashire, had been celebrating her 18th birthday in 2012 with friends at Oscar’s Wine Bar in Lancaster when she was given a free a Nitro-Jagermeister shot. As soon as she swallowed her drink she felt an explosion in her stomach  and a smoke like vapour came out of her nose. Ms Scanlon said she  felt her stomach expand.  The court heard Ms Scanlon was left close to death after drinking the drink which usually cost £3.95 shot. She was taken to Lancaster Royal Infirmary, where a CT scan found a large perforation in her stomach. Ms Scanlon, now 20, spent three weeks in hospital, undergoing surgery to remove her stomach and connect her oesophagus directly to her small bowel. Her solicitors told the court the experience, on 4 October 2012, had “completely changed” her life. She now suffers from “episodes of agonising pain”, has to avoid some foods and can no longer enjoy eating, they said. The Bar, which had opened…

Drone fine is welcome news for event safety
Health & Safety , Live Events / October 2015
UK

HEALTH & SAFETY Live events sector     The danger of drones falling out of the sky (and things falling from drones) has recently begun to trouble event organisers – including sports events, outdoor music events and festivals. Now Nottingham based Nigel Wilson, 42, has been convicted flying unmanned devices over built-up public places, or without direct sight of the aircraft, which is prohibited under sections 166 and 167 of the Air Navigation Order 2009. Wilson flew drones over Liverpool’s Anfield Stadium during a match in September 2014, flying so close to the ground that police horses were “startled” and officers struggled to control them, according to a police statement. He also flew drones over Arsenal’s Emirates stadium in North London, Derby County’s iPro stadium, and Manchester City’s Etihad stadium, all on busy match days. After the Manchester incident, on the 18th October 2014 Wilson was arrested by Greater Manchester police. Wilson was bailed, but then arrested again by Metropolitan Police, who were carrying out an investigation with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), after it emerged he had also been flying drones over London landmarks including Buckingham Palace, the Shard, HMS Belfast and the Houses of Parliament. Westminster Magistrates Court…

Tennessee tries to ban handguns are popular events
Licensing , Live Events / October 2015
USA

LICENSING Live events sector     Americans shoot Americans and most Americans seem to accept this,  as the right to ‘bear arms’ (and thus allow these shootings of the innocent) trumps all. President Obama has expressed his frustration at this, and the appalling statistics on gun deaths in the USA need no more comment. There are the odd glimmers of hope and common sense. With some lack of clarity over whether those legally allowed to carry handguns can take them into sporting and entertainment events in public parks and other recreational facilities, a new bill in Tennessee aims to allow public concert venues and professional sports stadiums owned by local municipalities to be able to maintain a ban on guns at events. The measure would create an exemption to the “guns in parks” law for ticketed events at public parks and any site used by a professional sports team for training or games.  The Tennessean reports that State Senate Majority Leader Lee Harris, D-Memphis, said: “Allowing guns in areas with large crowds where alcohol is consumed is a recipe for disaster, and creates a grave danger for law enforcement officers, who might not be able to distinguish friendlies with a gun…

Class action filed in SFX share buy back debacle
Live Events / October 2015
USA

EXCHANGE AC Live events sector     A US law firm has filed a class action lawsuit against EDM promoter SFX on behalf of anyone who bought shares in the company between the 25th February and 17th August of this year. Abbey Spanier LLP, which specialises in class actions, alleges that SFX and its CEO Robert Sillerman made “materially false and misleading statements” in the first half of this year in relation to the latter’s much publicised plan to buy-back all the shares he doesn’t currently control in the business, taking the EDM powerhouse back into private ownership. Sillerman floated SFX in 2013 at a price of $13 per share, and indeed his buy-back plan, initially at $4.75 per share, was not well received by investors. A committee of independent directors at SFX approved the proposal after Sillerman improved his offer to $5.25 per share (which was then well above the share price of $3.13). However the SFX share price subsequently dropped, at one point hitting a low of just $1.94 cents: last month Sillerman admitted that he couldn’t raise enough finance to go through with the proposed deal and also had to make a public apology after SFX subsidiary…

Employees time travelling to work CAN be working time
Employment Law , Live Events / October 2015
EU
Spain

EMPLOYMENT LAW Live events sector     The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has decided that time spent travelling to and from work for non-office based employees must now be classed as working time in a decision that may have a significant impact under the Working Time Regulations and arguably could impact on minimum wages in the UK. The case centred on a Spanish company, Tyco, whose employees were required to travel between client premises installing and maintaining security equipment.  The employees then became home based after the closure of their office.  A dispute arose about whether the time spent travelling at the start and the end of their working day should be classed as ‘working time’. Previously under the Working Time Regulations it was considered that working time did not include travel to and from work. The company  argued that this remained the same even with the change to a home base, but employees disagreed, saying theior travel should be classed as working time. These journeys varied greatly, with occasions of up to 100km of travel,  and the employees wanted to be paid for this additional ‘time’. The Spanish Courts sought clarification on the term ‘working time’ in…

Koko triumphs in historic planning battle
Live Events / October 2015
UK

PLANNING Live events sector     A historic Camden nightspot has triumphed in a High Court battle to block plans to convert a neighbouring pub into flats after a judge ruled that councillors’ attention had not been drawn to the potential heritage impact of the development. Koko, located at 1A Camden High Street, appealed to the High Court after plans to turn the Hope and Anchor pub into eight flats were approved. The club and live venue’s owners, Obar Camden Ltd, emerged victorious after the court ruled councillors had been “significantly misled” by planning officers. The Hope & Anchor’s owner, Vidacraft Ltd, also planned to build a three-storey extension and either shops or estate agent’s offices on the ground floor. Camden Council had granted permission for the project on January 6th, but the ruling has now been quashed. Koko began life as The Camden Theatre and was opened on Boxing Day 1900. In 1909 the theatre was renamed The Camden Hippodrome and was a variety theatre where Charlie Chaplin regularly performed. The venue became a cinema in 1913 and in 1928 ‘Novelty Nights’ were introduced on Fridays with up to seven live acts appearing before a film was shown. In 1933…

Sony. Universal and CMRRA face Competition Tribunal hearing in Canada
Competition / October 2015
Canada

COMPETITION (ANTI-TRUST) Recorded music     A Canadian firm which had been releasing low cost CDs of public domain recordings by the Beatles, the Beach Boys and the Rolling Stones, amongst others, is accusing two major record labels of using their clout and their combination of both recording and music copyrights to circumvent provisions of Canadian copyright law that had put some recordings by the Fab Four and others into the public domain. The term of copyright protection for sound recordings for Canada was extended from 50 years to 70 years this year. The extension was not applied retrospectively, so gives the extended term of protection to recordings from 1965 onwards. Now record label Stargrove has filed a 408 page complaint with the Canadian Competition Tribunal claiming market interference by the vertically integrated music giants, Universal and Sony, who have blocked releases of public domain sound recordings: It is alleged their publishing arms (for Sony this is Sony/ATV) instructed the local music collection society Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency (CMRRA) to refuse mechanical licences for the compositions included in the recordings. The complaint says the refusal of licences means that rights holders are denying Stargrove mechanical licences on the usual trade…