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EU Wants To Extend Copyrights For Musicians

Extension would add 45 more years

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The European Union’s internal market commissioner Charlie McCreevy has proposed extending the copyright protection for music performers from 50 years to 95 years.

"It is the performer who gives life to the composition and while most of us have no idea who wrote our favorite song – we can usually name the performer, " McCreevy said. If the copyright protection is not extended thousands of European performers who recorded in the late fifties and sixties will lose all of their royalties over the next ten years.

"I am not talking about featured artists like Cliff Richard or Charles Aznavour. I am talking about the thousands of anonymous session musicians who contributed to sound recordings in the late fifties and sixties."

"They will no longer get airplay royalties from their recordings. But these royalties are often their sole pension," McCreevy said explaining the reasoning behind his proposal.

Paying royalties to session musicians for their contributions to recordings makes sense but well-known artists such as Bono, Mick Jagger or Paul McCartney obviously have little worry from a financial standpoint.

Europa

A Commission survey finds that many European performers begin their career in their early 20′s. Session musicians who are musical freelancers start as young as 17. When the current 50 year protection expires they will be in their 70s. The life expectancy in The EU is 75 for men and 81 for women.

For session musicians and lesser know artists that income stops when they are at retirement age. They also would not receive any compensation for music sold on the Internet.

McCreevy said the proposal would not negatively affect consumer prices. "Empirical studies on the price effects of copyright protection show that the price of sound recordings that are out of copyright is not necessarily lower than that of sound recordings in copyright."
 

EU Wants To Extend Copyrights For Musicians
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