Leading Artist Groups Announce Opposition To Sen. Wyden’s So-Called “ACCESS to Sound Recordings Act” — The groups write, “The CLASSICS Act would ensure that artists who created and contributed to timeless songs finally get their due and would bring much needed certainty to one of the most contentious and confused areas of music licensing today. It is the product of a lengthy, considered process stretching back over several Congresses and represents a carefully balanced compromise that virtually all stakeholders have come together to support. We are disappointed that the introduction of the ‘ACCESS Act’ was done without consulting any artist group, organization, or union who would have made it clear that the bill’s eleventh-hour introduction is not a viable solution. The ‘ACCESS Act’ would undercut the goals of the [Music Modernization Act] by cutting compensation for the older artists that it is expressly designed to benefit.”
YouTube Download Sites Throw in the Towel Under Legal Pressure — Torrentfreak reports that several streamripping sites—which allow users to convert streaming media into downloadable files—have recently shut down. The article quotes EFF in defense of streamripping services, in part because the group says, “Some creators specifically allow others to download and modify their work.” But, if a creator lets you download their work… why do you need a streamripper?
The Normalization of Website Blocking Around the World in the Fight Against Piracy Online — ITIF’s Nigel Cory has written a handy survey of recent developments regarding the increasing number of countries adopting website blocking as a remedy for online piracy. Says Cory, “A growing number of countries recognize that website blocking is a reasonable and effective tool to reduce the consumption of pirated material and to increase the consumption of legal content. Furthermore, the various approaches to website blocking and years of operations establish a range of precedents and lessons learnt that can be used by other countries that are considering enacting or revising their own regime.”
Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim Delivers Remarks at the National Music Publishers Association Annual Meeting — A recommended read. Delrahim states, “Music does more than that, though. It connects us, even defines us, as an American people with a shared artistic and cultural heritage. When I emigrated from Iran as a child, I didn’t even speak English. The songs on the radio and in my tape deck helped to define America for me, as they have for so many others. The Jazz Singer album by Neil Diamond is what transports me to my first memories as a child in the United States. We can’t forget that every song starts with a songwriter: Someone, somewhere, sitting at a piano, strumming a guitar, or staring at a blank sheet of paper waiting for the lyrics to flow. Songwriters are the creators that give music its first breath of life; they make it all possible. They also inspire us.”
The Forum on Internet Governance — DC folks should check out this event next Thursday featuring Jonathan Taplin, author of Move Fast and Break Things. According to the event page, “For decades major internet players like Google and Facebook have been fighting off any attempts to put guidelines in place to address criminal and abusive activity on their platforms. But now, with last years foreign interferance in U.S. elections and the recent revelations about Facebook and Cambridge Analytica discussions about the need for internet governance have come sharply into focus. The Forum will bring together a diverse group of thought leaders and subject experts to discuss the absence of safeguards on the internet and make recommendations for ensuring a safe, secure internet for everyone.”