Massive New Artists Rights Coalition Launches – Takes Aim At Major Record Labels

Are you an artist tired of major record labels putting words in your mouth when it comes to suing music fans or deciding how much you get paid?

Note: This is an article I wrote that was published elsewhere first. It has been republished here for archival purposes

A major new star-studded coalition has just launched recently to counter this.

In a move not seen since the launch of the Stephen Page founded Canadian Music Creators Coalition, a new coalition known as the Featured Artists Coalition has launched.

“It is time for artists to have a strong collective voice to stand up for their interests. The digital landscape is changing fast and new deals are being struck all the time,” said Brian Message, co-manager of Radiohead and Kate Nash in the coalitions first press release, “but all too often without reference to the people who actually make the music. Just look at the recent MoU on file-sharing between labels, government and the ISPs. Artists were not involved. The Featured Artists’ Coalition will help all artists, young and old, well-known or not, drive overdue change through the industry in their interests and those of fans.”

The coalition features many major artists including Radiohead, Iron Maiden, Robbie Williams, and The Verve. The coalition is currently focusing on six main points:
-An agreement by the music industry that artists should receive fair compensation whenever their business partners receive an economic return from the exploitation of the artists’ work.
All transfers of copyright should be by license rather than by assignment, and limited to 35 years.
-The making available right should be monetized on behalf of featured artistes and all other performers.
-Copyright owners to be obliged to follow a ‘use it or lose it’ approach to the copyrights they control.
-The rights for performers should be the same as those for authors (songwriters, lyricists and composers).
-A change to UK copyright law which will end the commercial exploitation of unlicensed music purporting to be used in conjunction with ‘critical reviews’.

the press release continues:

The Featured Artists’ Coalition will expose unfair practices where necessary and demand that music companies consult with artists on all levels. It will give guidance to all artists on their rights and on how best these should be exploited. The Coalition will begin by campaigning for a series of changes (see Notes to Editors).

Jazz Summers, manager of The Verve, said: “The Featured Artists’ Coalition is an organisation for artists, which will be run by artists. It will ensure that in future the voice of artists is properly heard in discussions with music and technology companies, trade organisations and most importantly, with Government. It will also seek to improve the treatment of artists within the business and campaign to update laws and practices that better reflect the new music landscape. Digital technology gives artists the opportunity to control their future – this is the time to seize that opportunity.”

This is, indeed, really exciting news for many who follow the treatment of artists by major record labels.

[Found via: Gulli (German)]

Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85 and Google+.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: