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Press release

MEPs support easier licensing for EU-wide online music services

Free movement of services - 09-07-2013 - 13:05
Committee : Legal Affairs
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On-line music service providers will get licenses more easily and musicians will receive royalties more quickly, enabling consumers to enjoy a wider range of music on-line, under rules approved on Tuesday by the Legal Affairs Committee.

"This text, adopted unanimously, is a key proposal for the digital single market. Simple and transparent licensing of copyright means more legal offers and easier access to online content for consumers. This reform also ensures fair remuneration for artists and will develop new business opportunities," said the rapporteur, Marielle Gallo (EPP, FR).

The proposal backed by legal affairs MEPs aims to make it easier for service providers to obtain licenses for on-line music services. It also seeks to improve protection of authors’ rights by making sure that royalties are collected more efficiently from service providers and distributed to artists more fairly and more quickly.

Encouraging new and better online music services

This should encourage the creation of new EU-wide on-line music services and help boost sales. In future, instead of having to deal with authors' collective management organisations in each EU member states, service providers could obtain licenses from a small number of such organisations operating across EU borders.

MEPs passed an amendment to ensure that smaller and less popular repertoires also have access to the market by requiring these collecting organisations to issue licenses under the same conditions for all repertoires.

Proper and timely remuneration to artists

MEPs amended the Commission proposal to ensure that rightholders receive their royalties more quickly, by cutting the deadline for paying them from 12 to three months from the end of the financial year in which the right revenue was collected.

Another amendment by MEPs gives authors and artists better control over the management of their rights. The rules will ensure that artists will have the freedom to choose the collecting society and that they can participate more easily in the decision-making process.

Next steps

The report was adopted by Legal Affairs Committee by 22 votes to 0, with 0 abstentions. The committee negotiators received a mandate to start negotiations with EU ministers.

Committee on Legal Affairs

On the Chair: Klaus-Heiner Lehne (EPP, DE)

Rapporteur: Marielle Gallo (EPP, FR)

Procedure: ordinary legislative procedure (codecision)

REF.: 20130708IPR16829