Washington, D.C .— Future of Music Coalition (FMC) has for several months raised questions about a proposed merger between Universal Music Group and EMI Music, which would have a negative impact on artists as well as the growth of a legitimate digital music marketplace that rewards creators and fans alike.
News recently broke of an EMI proposal to European regulators that included divestitures and behavioral remedies meant to alleviate concerns over market concentration and resultant consumer harms. These supposed palliatives, however, do nothing to address concerns over the merger’s impact on the U.S. market, including the impact on innovation and leverage within the independent sector.
The following statement can be attributed to FMC Deputy Director Casey Rae: read more
On November 19, 2010, FMC submitted comments to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the National Telecommunications and Information Association (NTIA) in their Notice of Inquiry on Copyright Policy, Creativity and Innovation in the Internet Economy.
The comments describe the need to recognize musicians as stakeholders, particularly independents, who faced tremendous barriers to entry in the original music industry. We describe how the goal of protecting intellectual property must be balanced with a legitimate digital music marketplace built on artist access to online platforms.
We also examine current legal, technological and market-oriented efforts around copyright in the digital realm and the pros and cons of each. Given the global demand for music, the non-geographic nature of the internet and individual nations’ sovereign copyright laws, there are tremendous difficulties in implementing potential solutions. Nonetheless, there are compelling reasons to consider frameworks that streamline licensing and improve mechanisms for artist compensation.