Scottish Ticket Counterfeiter Spared Jail
Live Events , Trade Mark / August 2004

TRADEMARK Live Event Industry A Scottish judge has told a man that he undersold fake tickets for Celtic’s Uefa Cup game in Seville last year. Sentencing Alan Cloughley to community service, Sheriff Deirdre MacNeill QC said the forged tickets were of a convincingly high standard but she remarked that Cloughley, who sold each ticket for £5, could have got more than ten times that amount. The 23-year-old economics graduate was caught by police at his Glasgow home just days before the game. Glasgow Sheriff Court heard that Cloughley produced and sold hundreds of fake tickets for Celtic’s Uefa Cup Final clash with FC Porto. He appeared for sentence on Friday having earlier admitted two breaches of the Trade Marks Act. Sheriff MacNeill said it had been a “sophisticated and well planned operation” but the court heard that people who bought tickets from Cloughley were aware that they were fakes. Sheriff MacNeill said the seriousness of the offence warranted a prison sentence, but she was prepared to order him to do 260 hours of community service. Acting on a tip-off, police raided Cloughley’s home and seized 291 tickets and £300 in cash. He claimed he bought a legitimate ticket and copied…

UK Court of Appeal Limits Liability for Independent Contractors

HEALTH & SAFETY Live Concert Industry Payling v Naylor t/a Mainstream In a welcome judgement, the Court of Appeal have limited the liability of venue owners, promoters and nightclub’s to ensure that their contractors have public liability insurance. In Payling v Naylor (Times Law Reports, 2 June 2004) the Court held that whilst there was a duty on a club owner to take reasonable steps to ensure that any contractor engaged security services was competent, there was no free-standing duty, except in exceptional circumstances th ensure that the contractor had public liability insurance. In the earlier decision of Bottomley v Secretary & Members of Todmorden Cricket Club (Law Updates November 2003) the court had held that there was a duty on a venue owner who allowed dangerous practices on his land (pyrotechnics) to ensure that a subcontractor was had public liability insurance. The Court of Appeal in this case could understand that the lack of public liability insurance might be a relevant factor in assessing the competence of a contractor; However and overturning a judgement by Judge Murphy QC, the Court felt that as the security firm were licensed, accredited and approved under a scheme operated by the local authority and the police. The…

Sony Staff Spared Anti Social Behaviour Orders

HEALTH & SAFETY Record Labels, Live Music Industry Camden Council in London is taking on music industry bosses over flyposting and the Council are aiming to bring Anti Social Behaviour Orders (ASBO) against music industry bosses, claiming they have received more than a thousand complaints about the posters which are placed across the borough. Camden is one of the main focus points for alternative music in London, and is famous for its live music venues like The Barfly, Electric Ballroom and Underworld. The Council has targeted two of the majors, Sony and BMG. Sony Music chiefs have escaped Anti Social Behaviour Orders (ASBO) after promising not to commission any more illegal fly posting and the actions against Catherine Davies and Jo Headland have been withdrawn at Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court. However, BMG executives have not responded and now face the likelihood of court action and penalties if found guilty. The executives will be facing summons on the basis that flyposting has been defined as causing “harassment, alarm or distress” and so can be actioned under the Public Order Act 1986. Both Sony and BMG denied being involved in illegal flyposting. The sanctions ultimately extend to the possibility of a five-year prison sentences. Camden…

Disability Discrimination Act to Extend to Venues and Club Premises

HEALTH & SAFETY Live Event Industry The UK’s Disability Discrimination Act 1995 requires service providers to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ so that disabled patrons can use their premises. From 1 October 2004 this provision will be extended to the physical structure of buildings. Operators now must consider how physical barriers to disabled patrons can be removed or how alternative arrangements can be made. The Disability Rights Commission has said that it will back access cases after October although with 8 million disabled people in the UK with a huge spending power one would hope that venues would be proactive in making improvements. There are no tax breaks for structural improvements although there are for moveable items such as ramps and providing toilets for disabled persons is zero-rated for VAT. See : and

New Trade Mark Act in Czech Republic

TRADE MARK Record Labels, Music Publishers, Artists, Merchandising, Live Event Industry, Television, Internet As of April 1st 2004 a new Trademark Act (No.441/2003) will come into force in the Czech Republic. Although the structure of the Act has been considerably amended, there are only limited substantive changes in the law. However there are completely new are provisions concerning Community Trademarks, which will be automatically extended to the Czech Republic with the date of its accession to the European Union (these provisions will come into force as of May 1st 2004). The most important amendments are detailed in an article by Almut Rohnstock and a link is provided below. The definition of trademarks (Art.1) has been slightly amended, now including the possibility of colour trademarks; Art.2 now regulates which trademarks are able to claim protection in the Czech Republic, including CTMs and well-known trademarks according to Art.6 of the Paris Convention. Community Trademarks with seniority may also claim older rights (Art.3). Grounds for refusal ex officio (Art.4) as well as grounds for opposition (Art.7) and nullity (Art.32) newly include applications filed in bad faith. The provisions concerning oppositions and nullity (Art.7 and 32) based on known trademarks have been reformulated and expanded; the…

PPL Successful in Action Against Show Organiser in India

COPYRIGHT Record Labels, Television, Radio, Live Event Industry The organisers of the Mega Model Man Hunt, Gladrags Media Limited, have been ordered by the the Bombay High to pay Rs 46,000 to Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) as copyright fees. PPL approached the court when Gladrags refused to pay copyright fees for its event in April 2004 at the Mahalakshmi Race Course. PPL is the Indian society that collects copyright fees on behalf of the music companies including BMG Cresendo, Magnasound, Virgin Records, Venus, Saregama and others. The 1957 Copyright Act in India specifies that any public performance of Indian or international music has to obtain a public performance licence, or will invite criminal action. In India, PPL is the sole authority to administer the broadcasting, telecasting and public performance rights on behalf of the music industry. Advocate Rohini Vakil for PPL, said, “Despite sending out notices requesting them to pay up, they ignored it. Last year, too, they had gone ahead and held performances with taped music without paying copyright fees” Vakil explained that PPL has varying tariffs depending on category, and Gladrags had been asked to pay up under the hotel category for playing pre-recorded music at performances. See : For…

UK Licensing Act 2003
Licensing , Live Events / May 2004

LICENSING Live Event Industry The UK Licensing Act 2003 received Royal Assent on 10th July 2003 but is not expected to come into full effect until 2005. The main points are that pubs, bars, restaurants, hotels and concert venues will be covered by a new ‘Premises Licence’ which will cover the sale of alcohol and any or all of the seven ‘regulated entertainments’ including performance of live music, performance of dance and the playing of recorded music. A one-off fee of between £100-£500 will be paid the applicable local authority and their will be an annual inspection fee to the local authority of £50-£100. Licence applications must be submitted to the local authority 28 days in advance and must include a plan of the premises, details of licensable activities and times of licensable activities. The following is taken from the Department of Culture Media & Sport’s website under the heading Regulated Entertainment. Under the new licensing regime, the concept of a separate public entertainment licence will disappear. Under the new regime only a single authorisation will be needed to supply alcohol, provide regulated entertainment, such as a performance of live music, or provide late night refreshment or any combination of these activities. Six…

Shanghai Karaoke Bars Face The Music

COPYRIGHT Record Labels, Live Event Industry The Shanghai Daily News reports that local karaoke bars are paying close attention to a court case that could force many clubs to close their doors in the near future. The Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court has begun hearing Sony Music Entertainment ( Hong Kong) Ltd’s lawsuit against Cashbox Karaoke Bar for screening musical video discs without permission. Sony Music is seeking 350,000 yuan (US$42,169) in compensation and a public apology. It is also asking Cashbox to be banned from screening the discs in public. Sony Music said it discovered on March 7 2003 that the outlet of Cashbox Karaoke Bar in Fuxing Park was screening videos of Hong Kong pop star Leon Lai. Few, if any, local karaoke bars pay royalties to foreign music companies to screen their video disks, meaning a ruling against Cashbox could devastate the local industry. Sony wants local bars to pay the same royalties karaoke clubs pay in Hong Kong, which is between HK$50,000 and HK$500,000 per song for unlimited use. Cashbox argued that it pays licensing fees every year to the Music Copyright of China, an association that acts on behalf of composers and writers. Last…

New Regulations for Door Supervisors and Security Staff Introduced in the UK
Health & Safety , Live Events / April 2004

HEALTH & SAFETY Live Concert Industry The Private Security Industry (Licences) Regulations 2004 In a move to take the image of door staff away from ‘bouncers’ and into the new millennium the UK Government have introduced The Private Security Industry (Licences) Regulations 2004 which are effective from the 01 March 2004. These Regulations make provision in relation to applications to the Security Industry Authority (SIA) for the grant of licences under the Private Security Industry Act 2001 to engage in the activity of door supervision for public houses, clubs and comparable venues. The new Regulations prescribe the application form to be used for such applications and prescribe the forms of licence to be issued for that activity. A distinction is made between licences for people who carry out that activity themselves and licences for those who act as manager, supervisor, employer or director etc of people who carry out that activity. An obligation is placed on door staff to wear the appropriate identifying licence at all times when working, to notify the SIA of any conviction or caution and to produce the licence on demand to the SIA or the police. Appeals from SIA decisions, alongside appeals from Local Authority…

New UK Regulations for Booking Agencies and Entertainment Agents
Employment Law , Live Events / February 2004

EMPLOYMENT LAW Live Music Industry ARTICLE: The Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulations 2003 – By Ben Challis and Paul Fenn The Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Business Regulations will come into force in the United Kingdom, in the main, on 6 April 2004. The Regulations affect all employment agencies and employment businesses including entertainment agents and booking agents. The aim of the Regulations are “to make provision to secure the proper conduct of employment agencies and employment businesses and to protect the interests of persons using their services.” The Regulations include new procedural obligations. The major impact on UK booking agencies will be the requirement to have strict “compliance” procedures in place. In general, the regulations do not have any specific changes that will conflict with the usual day to day running of the agencies in their normal course of business, but a lot of additional paperwork will need to be generated. The Agents Association are currently working on the idea of developing a “Terms of Business” (ToB) letter that be issued to artists / clients that will cover the majority of the requirements of these regulations, along with a similar ToB to issue to Hirers (promoters) to satisfy…

Indictments Issued in Great White Tragedy
Health & Safety , Live Events / January 2004

HEALTH & SAFETY Live Concert Industry After a ten month investigation into the Rhode Island tragedy on 20 February 2003 at the Station Nightclub when pyrotechnics ignited during a performance by Great White caused an inferno, the Grand Jury has now issued criminal indictments. The fire killed 100 people, including Great White guitarist Ty Longley, and injured about 200 others. In the first indictments, former Great White tour manager Dan Biechele, and club owners Michael and Jeffrey Derderian were each charged with 100 counts of involuntary manslaughter with criminal negligence and 100 counts of involuntary manslaughter in violation of a misdemeanor. They were arraigned in Kent County Superior Court; all three pleaded not guilty. Bail for the Derderians was set at $50,000, and $100,000 for Biechele, who lives in Florida; all were expected to make bail by the end of the day. At the same time it is estimated that over US$1 billion of civil lawsuits have been filed. See: and Law Updates February 2003 and March 2003.

British Comedian Faces Damages Claim For Show Cancellation
Artists , Contract , Live Events / December 2003

CONTRACTS Artists, Live Concert Industry The British comedian Jim Davidson faces a claim of £35,000 after he cancelled a show at Plymouth Pavilions. The comedian backed out of the show after audience members in wheelchairs refused to move from the front row of the theatre before the show began. The venue refunded 1,700 audience members with the cost of their tickets (£17.50 and £19.50) and the cost of programmes bought. However, Mr Davidson justified his actions because his show involves him ‘taking the micky’ out of the front row of any show and in the circumstances he did not want to appear to be insulting the front row which was wholly made up of disabled patrons. It appears that Mr Davidson did not want to compromise his show or be seen to insult disabled patrons. Source: The Times 22 October 2003

Van Morrison Ordered To Pay Damages For Cancelled Contract
Artists , Contract , Live Events / December 2003

CONTRACTS Artists, Live Concert Industry English pub landlord Gary Marlow has been awarded approximately £40,000 in damages after Van Morrison cancelled a concert at the Crown Hotel public House in 2002. The singer, and his production company Exile, claimed that the contract had been breached by Marlow publicly advertising the event – but the court thought otherwise. The damages included the return of a £20,000 deposit. However, the damages fell far short of what Mr Marlow had asked for – he claimed the failed concert severely damaged the business of his pub and wanted damages of £400,000 for the long term damages to his business. This was not accepted in the High Court and Mr Marlow faces a substantial legal bill – it is also thought he may have turned down an offer of more than £40,000 from the singer to pursue the claim. A review of the judgement by Richard Taylor and Emma Stoker can be seen at: and see:

Responsibility For Security
Health & Safety , Live Events / December 2003

HEALTH & SAFETY LAW Live Concert Industry There would be a presumption that the employer of a security guard who deliberately assaulted a member of the public attending a event would be responsible for the security guard’s actions unless it was clear that the guard’s actions were wholly unrelated to his activities as a security guard – for example, if the guard knew the person assaulted and the act was a personal vendetta against that person. In Mattis -v- Pollock (t/a) Flamingos Nightclub (The Times Law Report 16 July 2003) the Court of Appeal held that a club doorman who stabbed a person in the vicinity of the club in revenge for an earlier violent attack on him in the club was acting in the course of his employment and so the club owner was vicariously liable for the doorman’s actions. The doorman was involved in a fight inside the club. The knifing happened after the doorman had gone home to get a knife and then attacked the victim some 100 metres away from the club. The victim was seriously injured. The doorman was convicted in a criminal court for grievous bodily harm (GBH) and sentenced to 8 years in prison. This civil action…

Suspended prison sentence for contempt of court for repeat copyright infringer: PPL v Tierney

COPYRIGHT Record Labels, Music Publishers, Live Concert Regular ‘users’ of music who either refuse to pay licence fees at all or who do so only under threat of legal proceedings are the bane of music collecting societies. The threat of legal proceedings does not always dissuade a repeat infringer. Furthermore, some infringers are prepared to ignore court orders or undertakings which they have given to the court. In this case the defendant Mr Tierney, the proprietor of an establishment in Guildford, breached a court order by failing to pay licence fees to Phonographic Performance Ltd in relation to certain sound recordings played at his establishment. He had also failed to comply with undertakings given to the court on a number of occasions. Failure to comply with a court order is a contempt of court which is punishable by a fine or an order for committal to prison. PPL applied for an order to commit Mr Tierney for contempt of court in respect of his failure to comply with the court order. It had reportedly made seven previous applications of this nature against Mr Tierney. PPL succeeded in its application. Mr Tierney had been warned of the consequences of further breaches…

Insurance Bottomley -v- Secretary & Members of Todmorden Cricket Club and Others
Live Events / November 2003

EVENT SAFETY LAW Live Concert Industry A seemingly uninteresting case involving a cricket club could have important ramificatons for the live event industry in the UK. In the Court of Appeal decision a small cricket club which engaged an independent contractor to put on a pyrotechnics (fireworks) display at the ground was held to owe a duty to ensure that the contractor had adequate public liability insurance. It made no difference that the contractors were paid a fee. Lord Justice Brookes said there might be many occasions when an occupier could be liable in negligence in respect of activities permitted or encouraged on his land. Here, the club allowed a dangerous event to take place on its land with no written safety plan and no insurance and the occupier could not show that they had taken reasonable care to select a competent contractor. The club was therefore liable in damages for injuries sustained by the claimant who had been employed by the contractor to help with the event. If the occupier of the premises could show that they had taken reasonable care to select a competent and safe contractor then they would normally escape liability. In those circumstances an injured…

Licensing , Live Events / July 2003

LICENSING Live concert Industry The live music industry in Melbourne, Australia is pushing for a change in the law to put an obligation on builders and owners of new apartments built near live music venues to soundproof new buildings against the existing levels of noise. Venue owners say that as house and apartment prices in the inner city have soared, home owners’ expectations have changed and that new, more affluent residents don’t want to be kept awake at night by live music. Their complaints about noise to local authorities and liquor-licensing bodies are increasingly being taken seriously. The owner of one live music venue objected to a three-storey apartment block being built in a warehouse shell behind his venue. The owner says one wall of the block will be just metres from venue’s back door and beer garden, and that plans show that windows from two bedrooms will be “directly adjacent” to the rear of the venue. The venue currently hosts live bands six nights a week, playing until 1am. The venue told the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal that builders should incorporate soundproofing into the new development but on March 31, VCAT ruled that the development could proceed although…

Licensing , Live Events / July 2003

LICENSING Live Event Industry The Carling Weekend Leeds Festival was successful in its applications for a public entertainment licence at both Temple Newsam and Bramham Park after strong objections from local residents at the Festival’s 2002 site, Temple Newsam. Last year’s Festival ended in riots and arson and local residents had described the Festival’s history as ‘4 years of hell’. But the Mean Fiddler Organisation has decided to go ahead with the Bramham Park site after the local authority recognised the cultural and economic benefits the festival brought to the local area. See: In a separate matter reported in the Stage (May 22, 2003) it was announced that the British Actors Equity Association (Equity), the trade union which represents artists and performers, had brought an emergency motion to its annual conference after insurers announced that they were no longer able to secure public liability cover for hypnotists. As all performers using hypnotism must have public liability insurance when applying for a licence from the relevant UK local authority the current situation inevitably means that no licences can be granted.


HEALTH & SAFETY Live Concert Industry Manhatten Supreme Court Judge Matrin Schoenfeld threw out a lawsuit from 56 year old lawyer Jeffrey Powell who claimed that John Fogerty’s music damaged his hearing. Judge Schoenfeld rejected the claim saying “if you don’t like loud music don’t go to rock concerts” and added that “Nobody is forced to attend rock ‘n’ roll concerts”. Powell saw the former Creedence Clearwater Revival frontman in concert six years ago. In the eight-page decision released yesterday, the judge referred to Powell as an “eggshell ear” – and rejected his $5 million lawsuit. “That ‘loud music’ can cause hearing impairment is “perfectly obvious” and “commonly appreciated” Schoenfeld said. The judge said Powell admitted he suffered ringing in his ears for years after attending rock concerts but went to see Fogerty anyway with three friends. Powell said that after one or two songs, he left and listened from outside the ballroom, returning once to find his friends with their fingers in their ears. Judge Schoenfeld said Fogerty’s “bluesy, good-time, roots-rock” sound has never been thought of as particularly loud, compared with bands such as the The Who and Led Zeppelin. See

Licensing , Live Events / June 2003

LICENSING Live Concert Industry The US Rave Act has passed through the US Congress when Senator Joe Biden tied the provisions to the Child Abduction Prevention Act. This means that the promoter or organiser of events and/or the property owner can face imprisonment for up to twenty years if drugs are found being used at venues and nightclubs. The Drugs Policy Alliance warned that ‘Property owners can be punished for drug offences which their customers commit – even if they work hard to prevent such offences.’ See and

Licensing , Live Events / May 2003

LICENCING Live Concert Industry The London Evening Standard reported (08/04/03) that the Astoria in Charing Cross Road faces a fight for its public entertainment licence after Westminster Council renewed efforts to remove the venue’s public entertainment licence. The venue has had a number of high profile problems and in the eight months between September 2001 and May 2002 the emergency services were called to the venue 152 times. In October 2001 there was a double shooting linked to rap band So Solid Crew at the Astoria. The Council initially refused the venue’s licence but the Astoria’s owners, the Mean Fiddler Group Plc, successfully appealed the decision in the Magistrate’s Court. Westminster Council have now lodged an appeal against the Magistrate’s decision asking the superior court to uphold the original decision to refuse the licence. The case will be heard before the Superior Court who will review the magistrate’s decision. COMMENT : Licensing law in the United Kingdom is currently under review by Parliament (see Law Updates March 2003 Musicians Union Spearheads Challenge to Proposed Licensing Legislation) and new provisions regulating the private security industry will soon be incorporated into UK law. The House of Lords have rejected parts of the proposed licensing…

Artists , Live Events , Taxation / May 2003

TAXATION Live Concert Industry, Artists The ECJ (European Court of Justice) held on appeal that the meaning of ‘cultural bodies’ in the context of the supply of cultural services in the concert industry could extend to individual performers who would not need to charge VAT for their services. This case arose out of an appeal from the Federal Court of Justice in Germany (Bundesgerichtshof) by a German promoter against a criminal conviction for failing to account for VAT in respect of soloists engaged by him for a concert tour. The commercial nature of the activities did not preclude the services and their providers from being exempt from VAT in Germany. Reference: Criminal proceedings against Hoffman ECJ Case C-144/00

Licensing , Live Events / April 2003

LICENSING Live Concert Industry Undercover licensing officers for Westminster Council in London have investigated and now succesfully prosecuted the Pathfinder Pubs, owner of the Pitcher & Piano chain of bars, for allowing customers to dance at bars which did not hold a public entertainment licence. The bars argued that customers were simply ‘moving rhythmically’ to the music. Horseferry Road Magistrates Court fined the chain 00 and required the chain to apply for two public entertainment licences.These will cost the chain 00 and the two bars in question will need 000 of works between them to qualify for the licences. See London Evening Standard 27 March 2003.

Health & Safety , Live Events / March 2003

HEALTH & SAFETY Live Concert Industry The Grand Jury began its investigation on February 26th behind closed doors at a National Guard training center in East Greenwich to decide whether anyone should be held responsible for the fire and the deaths of 97 people in West Warwick, Rhode Island. Most of the first Grand Jury session was devoted to preliminary talks between prosecutors and lawyers for the rock band Great White whose guitarist, Ty Longley, died in the blaze. The investigation will centre on the causes of the fire, Great White’s pyrotechnic display, the layout and construction of the nightclub and the use of inflammable soundproofing materials. There is also a dispute over whether Great White had permission to use pyrotechnics. The band has said it received approval to use special effects, but the two brothers who own the club have denied that they gave permission. Club owners Jeffrey and Michael Derderian, along with band members, could be indicted on state charges of involuntary manslaughter or second-degree murder. It appears that the brothers who own the club were about to sell the business and the Derderians were scheduled to begin transferring the liquor license the day after the disaster. See…

Licensing , Live Events / March 2003

LICENSING Live Concert Industry Pub licensee Peter Elton was fined 00 with 00 costs by Bromley Magistrates Court for two admitted breaches of the Pub’s Public Entertainment Licence. Mr Elton admitted to allowing entertainment to continue for 45 minutes past the licenced curfew at the Alexander Pub in Penge on the Kent Borders in England. The licence conditions had been imposed to prevent disturbance to residential neighbours of the Alexander. See

Licensing , Live Events / March 2003

LICENSING Live Concert Industry Organisers of live music in small venues, currently exempt from needing a Public Entertainment Licence (PEL) and ‘pub’ venues where two or less performers are featured (known as the ‘two in a bar’ rule) are becoming increasingly alarmed at the hidden costs and bureaucracy emerging from the UK Government’s proposed Licensing Bill. Audience magazine noted that ‘far from deregulation or a boost to the industry, the legislation is likely to devastate the sector of live music where many aspiring performers take their first steps and others enjoy a modest living’ ( The initial plan of scrapping PELs and including a entertainment licence free with a venue’s liquor licence initially seemed positive – not now, as both the live music industry and the licensed pub trade are becoming increasingly concerned. The plan to move liquor licensing from Magistrates Courts to local authorities is now opposed by the licensed trade and the live music industry is also alarmed that the new levels of local authority bureaucracy and increased costs will spell the end of small pub and club venues.

Licensing , Live Events / March 2003

LICENSING Live Concert Industry After a meeting lasting until 00.30 the Regulatory Board of Mendip District Council finally granted the licence for the 2003 Glastonbury Festival. This was the festival’s second application having initially been refused a licence because of the Council’s worries about safety and security of local residents and the policing of local villages outside of the Festival site itself. After the seven hour meeting on the 17th February, Festival co-organiser Emily Eavis said ‘I am so excited but it was like going through a really painful paper shredder’. See

Health & Safety , Live Events / February 2003

HEALTH & SAFETY Live Concert Industry Following on from the death of 21 clubbers in Chicago on the 17th February, America was reeling after the deaths of at least 95 people in West Warwick, Rhode Island when the band Great White’s pyrotechnic display set fire to the venue where they were playing. The 17th February tragedy was caused by security staff letting off pepper spray in a nightclub to break up a fight; this caused members of the audience to panic in trying to escape. The Rhode Island tragedy was described by state Governor Don Carcieri as ‘a real disaster. The building went up so fast no one had a chance’. It was estimated that over 300 people were inside the one-story wooden building. 187 people were taken to hospital and over 30 remain critical. The low ceiling ‘Station’ club had no water sprinkler system as it was too small to require one by law. It also had no pyrotechnics licence although the band claim that they had checked in advance with the venue and permission for their display was given. Reports say that that after the pyrotechnics ignited the roof of the venue soundproofing material also ignited and the…

Competition , Live Events / February 2003

COMPETITION Radio, Live Concert Industry Democrat Senator Russ Feingold has reintroduced his Competition in Radio and Concert Industries Act on January 28th 2003 which he says will help consumers, small and independent radio station owners, and independent concert promoters by prohibiting anti-competitive practices in the radio and concert industries. The Bill’s introduction comes as the Senate Commerce Committee holds a hearing on the problems of radio consolidation. Insiders say committee chairman, Republican Senator John McCain, is expected to sign on as a co-sponsor of the bill soon. The Committee expects to hear from representatives of leading radio station owner and concert promoter Clear Channel Communications, the National Association of Broadcasters, the Recording Artists Coalition and the Future of Music Coalition. Says Feingold: “Since originally introducing this legislation in June 2002, I have seen a groundswell of interest both in Congress and among artists, consumers, independent radio stations, and local promoters in restoring fairness to radio. My legislation will reduce concentration and crack down on anti-competitive practices, such as the new ‘pay to play’ system.” Feingold says the latter practice allows radio giants to “shake down the music industry.” See See

Licensing , Live Events / February 2003

LICENSING Live Concert Industry The UK’s biggest festival, Glastonbury, is having to re-apply for a Public Entertainment Licence after its initial application was rejected by Mendip District Council (MDC) despite no objections from MDC’s own officers or statutory consultees. The new application will be heard on the 17th February 2003. The Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982 provides that responsibility for controlling places of public entertainment (music, dancing, etc) rests with the district council or in London with the relevant London Borough. It would normally be an offence to organise public entertainment without a licence or to be in breach of any terms or conditions of a licence granted. At present the licensing of public entertainment applies to all indoor and outdoor events (except bar events with two or less performers). The relevant local authority will have a very wide discretion with the terms and conditions of the licence but as a minimum the authority can impose terms and conditions to secure the safety of performers and others present, to ensure there is adequate access for emergency vehicles and provide toilets and sanitation and to present unreasonable noise and disturbance to the neighbourhood. The Public Entertainment Licence (Drugs Misuse) Act 1997 allows local…

Live Events , Trade Mark / December 2002

TRADE MARK Merchandising, The Live Concert Industry Reed -v- Arsenal FC (2002) The curious case against ‘unofficial’ merchandiser Mr Reed BY Arsenal Football Club (AFC) carries on. The initial hearing in the High Court, London, before Mr Justice Laddie resulted in an unexpected win for Mr Reed. The Court held that because Mr Reed made it quite clear that his goods were unofficial, AFC could not rely on the law of passing of or their registered trade marks for ‘Arsenal’ ‘Gunners’ (AFC’s nickname) and two logos to prevent Mr Reed selling his goods near the club’s ground. The European Court of Justice overturned this decision holding that the unauthorised use of ‘badges of allegiance’ were protected by trade mark law. Mr Reed’s use of the signs created an impression of a link between the goods he sold and AFC and AFC as the proprietor [of a registered mark] is entitled to prevent unauthorised use of their marks. See ECJ: Case C-206/01 But in an unexpected twist the High Court ‘overturned’ the ECJ’s decision allowing Mr Reed to continue selling his ‘Gunner’s’ merchandise. The UK decision has sent tremors through the world of band merchandising with fears that a properly registered trademark will not protect…