Podcasters asked to pay royalties by Dutch collection societies

September 2005


The BBC have been hailing their free podcasting service as a major success after 1.4 million people downloaded the Beethoven symphonies it made freely available although it is thought that over half were taken up by users in the USA. Writing in the Observer newspaper (31st July) John Naughton explains that “podcasting is the delivery of an enclosed file to a computer where it can be downloaded to an MP3 player”. The technology started to be used in blogs but was recently incorporated into Apple’s i-Tunes software. Podcasting enables anyone to create what are effectively self published radio ‘programmes’. Anyone who wishes to receive the programmes subscribe to feeds using software that checks for and downloads new programmes automatically.to the author’s syndication feed which may of course be for a fee. In Holland Buma/Stemra, the agency that represents the interests of music composers, lyricists and publishers in the Netherlands and collects royalties on their behalf, is asking podcasters for compensation for lost royalties. As a temporary measure until 1 January 2006 (when presumably Buma/Stemra will announce a more definite scheme) the agency is asking professional podcasters to pay a monthly charge of €85, and non-professionals could pay as much as €35 a month. Buma/Stemra view podcasting as a ‘delayed’ form of webcasting, and therefore subject to the same copyright rules, meaning that podcasters are required to seek permission from the relevant music recording companies and report details to Buma/Stemra before publishing.

See: http://www.dmeurope.com/default.asp?ArticleID=9214

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