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European Authors’ open letter in support of the Copyright Directive

 

A Europe Fit for the next generation of creators

20th of March 2019

Dear Member of the European Parliament,

The undersigned organisations of authors – representing hundreds of thousands of voters who are writers, screenwriters, filmmakers, composers and songwriters – urge you to seize this once in a decade opportunity and support the successful adoption of the Copyright Directive.

Since the last European elections, the European Commission, the European Parliament and Member States concluded that the European Union needed to modernise copyright in the Digital Age. Included in this debate was a conviction of the need to strengthen Europe’s authors by addressing the systemic weak bargaining position in negotiating contracts, and promoting fair remuneration.

Authors are at the very origin of the copyright value chain for Europe’s cultural and creative industries, which produce EUR 509 billion in value added to GDP, provide 7.5 % of the EU’s work force and significantly contribute to the EU economy in terms of employment, investment, growth, innovation and competitiveness on a global scale. Yet for the vast majority of authors, their careers are barely sustainable and poorly remunerated. The Parliament has played a decisive role in insisting that the Copyright Directive address this anomaly and has significantly improved the various provisions in the Directive which will benefit authors, and which we have supported. 

Throwing the Directive away now would not only reverse the European Parliament’s work to support authors but also be an unprecedented setback for all creators in Europe. Abandoning the Directive now would be a major victory for the major international players who ignore the damage caused to the creative industries by their dominant position and refuse the harmonisation and inclusion of basic standards of transparency and fairness in EU copyright legislation.

This Directive concerns the future of Europe’s cultures. The European Parliament played a key role in the negotiations ensuring future generations access to freedom of expression.

Please – adopt the Directive and send a strong signal to the future generations who want to write, compose, create so that they can be fairly remunerated.

Sincerely yours,

  1. ACE, Spanish Writers’ Association, Spain – Manuel Rico Rego – President
  2. ADA, Austrian Directors Association, Austria – Jacob Groll and Jenny Gand – Co-chair
  3. ALMA, The Spanish Writers Guild, Spain – Alberto Macias – President
  4. AMA, Autores de Musica Asociados, Spain – Javier de Juan – President
  5. ANAC — Associazione Nazionale dei Autori Cinematografici, Italy – Francesco Ranieri Martinotti – President
  6. APR – ASSOCIAÇÃO PORTUGUESA DE REALIZADORES, Portugal – Filipa Reis – President
  7. ARRF – Association des Réalisateurs et Réalisatrices de Films, Belgium – André Buytaers, Administrator
  8. ARF/FDS – Swiss Filmmakers Association, Switzerland – Barbara Miller – President
  9. Asociace spisovatelů, The Czech Writers Association, Czech Republic – Ondřej Lipár – Chairman
  10. Association of Catalan Language Writers, Catalonia-Spain – Bel Olid Báez – President
  11. Association des Auteurs de l’Audiovisuel (ASA), Belgium, Frédéric Castadot – President
  12. Associazione dell’Autorialità Cinetelevisiva, 100autori, Italy – Stefano Sardo – President
  13. BAFTRS – Bulgarian Association of the Film, Theater and Radio Scriptwriters, Bulgaria, President – Dr. Stanislav Semerdjiev
  14. BAM!, Dutch Songwriters Society, Netherlands – Pieter Perquin – Chair
  15. BASCA, British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors – United Kingdom – Crispin Hunt – Chair
  16. Bundesverband Regie e. V., Germany – Susann Reck, Marie Noelle, Axel Schill Bettina Schoeller-Bouju & Cornelia Grünberg, Executive Board
  17. CC Composers Club e.V., Germany – John Groves – President
  18. Croatian Film Directors’ Guild, Croatia – Danilo Šerbedžija, President
  19. The Danish Composers’ Society, Denmark – Bent Sørensen – President
  20. The Danish Authors Society, Denmark – Morten Visby – Chairman
  21. The Danish Writers Guild, DenmarkAnders Busk – Kommunikationskonsulent
  22. Danske Filminstruktører/Danish Film Directors, Denmark – Christina Rosendahl, President
  23. Deutscher Komponistenverband, Germany – Dr. Enjott Schneider- President
  24. DGCY – Directors Guild of Cyprus, Cyprus – Daina Papadaki, President
  25. The Directors Guild of Slovenia – Slovenia – Urša Menart
  26. Directors UK, United Kingdom – Andrew Chowns, CEO & Steve Smith, Chair
  27. DJBFA, Composers and songwriters, Denmark – Susi Hyldgaard chairman and Anna Lidell vice chairman
  28. Drehbuchverband Austria, Austrian Screenwriter Association, Austria – Christian Neubacher
  29. DSR – Directors Guild of Slovenia, Slovenia – Urša Menart, Chair
  30. DSR Screenwriters, Slovenia – Matevž Luzar
  31. Dutch Directors Guild, The Netherlands – Martijn Winkler – Chairman
  32. Dutch Writers Guild, The Netherlands, Maria Vlaar – Chair
  33. ECSA, European Composer & Songwriter Alliance, Alfons Karabuda – President
  34. ESPEK – Association of Greek Film Directors-Producers, Greece – Elina Psykou – President
  35. Estonian Filmmakers Union, Estonia – Alvar Kõue – Chairman
  36. EWC European Writers’ Council, Gunnar Ardelius – President
  37. FAGA, Foro de Asociaciones de Quionistas audiovisuals, Ana Hormaechea, President
  38. FEMA, Federación Espanola de Músicos Asociados, Spain – Iván García-Pelayo – International Affairs Reprensentative
  39. FERA – Federation of European Film and TV Directors – Dan Clifton – Chair
  40. FLAC, Fédération Luxembourgeoise des auteurs et compositeurs, Luxembourg – Roby Steinmetzer – President
  41. Flemish Writers’ Association (Vlaamse Auteurs Vereniging, VAV), Belgium – Natalie Ariën – coordinator
  42. Film Directors Guild of Azerbaijan, Azerbaijan – Huseyn Mehdiyev – Chairman
  43. The Finnish Playwrights and Screenwriters Guild, Finland – Ms Sonia Meltt – Executive Director
  44. The Finnish Music Creators FMC, Finland – Kaija Kärkinen – Chair of the Board
  45. Galician Language Writers Association, Galicia-Spain – Cesáreo Sánchez Iglesias -President
  46. The German Writers’ Union, Germany, Lena Falkenhagen –
  47. La Guilde Française des Scénaristes, France, Denis Goulette – Executive Officer
  48. Greek Directors’ Guild, Greece – Haris Papadopoulos – Chairman
  49. Groupe 25 Images, France – Claire De La Rochefoucauld & Arnaud Selignac – Presidents
  50. Hellenic Authors’ Society, Greece – Yiorgos Chouliaras – President
  51. Hrvatsko društvo skladatelja, Croatian Composers Society, Croatia – Ante Pecotić – President
  52. The Icelandic Dramatists Union, FLH (Félag leikskálda og handritshöfunda), Margrét Örnólfsdóttir, Chairman
  53. IMAGO — International Federation of Cinematographers Paul René Roestad – President
  54. The Irish Writers’ Union, Ireland, Lissa Oliver & Phil Mac Giolla Bháin, Co-Chairpersons
  55. Israel Directors Guild, Israel – Limor Pinhasov, Chairwoman
  56. LARS – Luxembourgish Association of Film Directors and Scriptwriters, Luxembourg – Claude Lahr, President
  57. Latvian Filmmakers Union, Latvia – Ieva Romanova – Chair
  58. Lithuanian Filmmakers Union, Lithuania – Arūnas Matelis – President
  59. Magyar Zeneszerzők Egyesülete, Hungarian Composers’ Union, Hungary – Máté Hollós – President
  60. Musimagen – Asociation of Audiovisual composers of Spain, Darío Palomo – President
  61. National Society of Greek Authors, Greece, Eleni Kekropoulou, Vice-President
  62. Netwerk Scenarioschrijvers, the Netherlands, Pieter Bart Korthuis -Chairman
  63. NFF – Norwegian Film Makers Association, Norway – Sverre Pedersen – President
  64. NFR – Norske Filmregissører, Norway – Marianne Kleven, Chair
  65. Nieuw Geneco, Nieuw Genootschap Nederlandse Componisten, Netherland – Felix Rottenberg – Chair, Esther Gottschalk – Director
  66. NOPA – The Norwegian Society of Composers and Lyricists, Norway, Ingrid Kindem – Chair
  67. Norsk Komponistforeningen, Norwegian Society of Composers, Norway, Jørgen Karlstrøm – Chairman of the Board
  68. ÖGZM, Österreichische Gesellschaft für zeitgenössische Musik – Austria, Morgana Petrik – Präsident
  69. ÖKB – Österreichischer Komponistenbund, Austria – Alexander Kukelka – President
  70. PDM – Producers and Directors of Montenegro – Montenegro – Ivan Djurovic, President
  71. Portuguese Society of Authors (SPA), Portugal, José Jorge Letria –
  72. Rättighetsbolaget/Rights Manager of the Swedish Union for Performing Arts and Film, Sweden – Anna Carlson, President
  73. Sanasto – Finnish Literary Copyright Society, Finland – Anne Salomaa – Executive Director
  74. Scenario, Switzerland – Jacqueline Surchat – Coordinator
  75. SCGI, Screen Composers Guild of Ireland, Ireland – Sarah Glennane – CEO
  76. SDGI –Screen Directors Guild of Ireland, Ireland-Maurice Sweeney – Chairman
  77. Screenwriters Circle of the Polish Filmmakers Association, Poland, Maciej Karpinski – President
  78. Scriptwriters Guild of Greece, Greece – Alexander Kakavas – President
  79. SFP – Stowarzyszenie Filmowców Polskich/Polish Filmmakers Association, Poland – Jacek Bromski, President
  80. SKAP – The Swedish Society of Songwriters, Composers and Authors, Sweden – Alfons Karabuda – Chair
  81. SKL – Samtök kvikmyndaleikstjóra/Film Directors Guild of Iceland, Iceland – Dagur Kári Pétursson, Chairman
  82. SNAC, Syndicat National des auteurs et des compositeurs, France – Pierre-André Athané – President
  83. Society of Authors (SoA), United Kingdom, Nicola Solomon – Chief Executive
  84. The Society of Finnish Composers, Finland – Antti Auvinen – Chairman of the Board
  85. The Society of Slovene Composers, Slovenia, Nenad First – President
  86. Society of Swedish Authors in Finland, Finland – Peter Sandström – President
  87. SPID – Croatian screenwriters and playwrights guild, (Croatian screenwriters and playwrights guild), Croatia, Zinka Kiseljak – President
  88. SRF – Société des Réalisateurs de Films, France – Marie Amachoukeli, Bertrand Bonello, Christophe Ruggia, Co-Presidents
  89. Suomen elokuvaohjaajaliitto SELO ry, Finland – Sakari Kirjavainen, Chair
  90. The Swedish Association of Educational Writers, Sweden – Wiwi Ahlberg, Chair-person
  91. Swedish Film Directors, Sweden – Maria Eriksson-Hecht & Göran Du Rees – Presidents
  92. The Swedish Writers’ Union, Sweden – Grethe Rottböll – President
  93. Teaterförbundet – The Swedish Union for Performing Arts and Film, Sweden – Simon Norrthon, President
  94. Tónskáldafélag Íslands – Icelandic Composers’ Society, Þórunn Gréta Sigurðardóttir – Chairperson
  95. UCMF, Union des Compositeurs de Musiques de Films, France, Béatrice Thiriet – Présidente
  96. UNAC, Union Nationale des Auteurs et Compositeurs, France – Olivier Delevingne – President
  97. U.N.C.L.A, Unione Nazionale Compositori Librettisti Autori, Italy, Giuseppe Amendola – Secretary General
  98. Unie van Regisseurs vzw – Belgium/Flanders – Jin Berghmans, CEO
  99. Verband Deutscher Drehbuchautoren e.V., Screenwriter’s Guild of Germany, Germany – Sebastian Andrae, Prof. Peter Henning – Executive Board Members
  100. Vlaamse Scenaristengilde / Flemish Screenwriters Guild, Belgium – Michel Sabbe & Dirk Nielandt
  101. WGGB, Writers’ Guild of Great Britain, UK – Ellie Peers – General Secretary, Gail Renard – Chair
  102. Writers’ Guild of Ireland, Ireland – Thomas McLaughlin – Chairman
  103. The Writers’ Guild of Norway, Norway, Monica Boracco – Chair
  104. Writers Guild of Sweden, Sweden, Pia Gradvall – Chair
  105. The Writers’ Union of Iceland – Iceland, Ragnheidur Tryggvadottir – Executive Manager
  106. The Writers’ Union of Romania, Romania, Razvan Voncu – Director for International Programs
  107. Zwiazek Polskich Autorow, Kompozytorow, Poland – Marek Hojda- Vice-President
  108. Zwiazek Kompozytorow Polskich, The Polish Composers’ Union, Poland – Mieczyslaw Kominek Ph.D. – the President

You can find the PDF version of the open letter here.

***

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 30,000 professional composers and songwriters in 27 European countries. With 57 member organizations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

Web: www.composeralliance.org

EU Transparency Register ID: 71423433087-91

EWC, founded in 1977 in Germany and newly constituted in 2006 in Brussels as an international non-profit organisation, the European Writers’ Council is the federation of 45 European national organisations of professional writers and literary translators in all genres in 34 countries. EWC’s members represent more than 160,000 authors in the book sector.

Web: www.europeanwriterscouncil.eu

EU Transparency Register ID: 56788289570-24

The Federation of European Film Directors (FERA), founded in 1980, represents film and TV directors at European level, with 35 directors’ associations as members from 29 countries. We speak for more than 20,000 European screen directors, representing their cultural, creative and economic interests.

Web: www.filmdirectors.eu

EU Transparency Register ID: 29280842236-21

The Federation of Screenwriters Europe is a network of national and regional associations, guilds and unions of writers for the screen in Europe, created in June 2001. It comprises 25 organisations from 19 countries, representing more than 7,000 screenwriters in Europe.

Web: www.scenaristes.org

EU Transparency Register ID: 642670217507-74

PRESS RELEASE “Fruitful discussions at the Creators’ Roundtable in L.A.”

   Los Angeles, 13thMarch 2019

 

On 13thMarch 2019, the Creators’ Roundtable took place in L.A. hosted by the Society of Composers and Lyricists (SCL)and ECSA. The roundtable is part of ECSA’s Creative Europe funded activity called ‘Transatlantic Dialogue for Sustainable Music’ aiming at discussing and tackling global issues concerning the music creators’ community.

The ECSA delegation, consisting of ECSA President Alfons Karabuda, Vice President Bernard Grimaldi, Secretary General Marc du Moulin and European Affairs and Programme Manager Alicja Swierczek, was welcomed by the SCL delegation including President Ashley Irwin, SCL Recording Secretary Jonathan David Neal and several SCL Board members such as film and game music composer Gary Schymann, composer and arranger Ira Hearshen and film composer and hit songwriter Hélène Muddiman.

The roundtable started with reciprocal updates on relevant political and legal developments in the EU and US for composers and songwriters. Moreover, buy-out contracts and the concrete challenges faced by US and European game music composers were discussed.

Among the roundtable participants were furthermore:

Jesper Ankarfeldt, Danish film music composer

Rick Carnes– US songwriter, President Songwriters Guild of America, Co-Chair MCNA (Music Creators North America).

Marvin Dolgay– Canadian composer, President Emeritus Screen Composers Guild of Canada. Co-Chair MCNA (Music Creators North America).

Charles J. Sanders– General Counsel to Songwriters Guild of America and MCNA.

Starr Parodi– US composer and Songwriter, President of the Alliance of Women Film Composers (AWFC).

The afternoon session continued with a discussion with representatives of the US Copyright Office Reagan A. Smith, General Counsel and Associate Register of Copyrights, and Chris Weston of the Policy and International Affairs of the American Copyright office. Updates were given on the Music Modernization Act and the developments regarding moral rights Report in the US.

The Creators’ Roundtable continued with Sarah Kovacs, agent at Kraft-Engel, one of the leading composer agencies who talked about the realities of the streaming as well as game business for composers and songwriters. More experiences and insights were given by:

Shawn LeMone– Vice President Film & TV Music/New Media, ASCAP

Jennifer Harmon– Senior Director Film TV & Visual Media, ASCAP

Erin Collins– Vice President of Film TV and Developing Media, SESAC

The participants underlined that buy-outs are not a “fait accompli” and there are possibilities to negotiate fairer contracts with streaming services as well as game production companies. They also emphasized the need to raise awareness about those challenges to the whole music creators’ community especially to the younger generation.

ECSA President Alfons Karabuda comments on the roundtable:

Never before has the condition for professional music creation and distribution changed so rapidly as in the present. These movements are almost all global and only in close collaboration with our international network will we be able to take a leading role rather than one of a bystander. This is why the Creators’ Roundtable set-up in partnership with SCL is of such importance.”

 

For more information about the “Transatlantic Dialogue for Sustainable Music”,please don’t hesitate to contact:

European Affairs and Programme Manager Alicja Swierczek

Email: alicja.swierczek@composeralliance.org

Website: www.composeralliance.org

 

Please find here the PDF version

 

ECSA Gender Equality Charter

 

The ECSA Working Group on Gender and Equality is proud to announce the publication of the ECSA Gender Equality Charter, a set of commitments aimed at improving the conditions and advancement of women composers and songwriters in the music industry.

The charter is the result of collaboration, discussion and debate among the Working Group  and the community of ECSA’s members and it is meant to inspire ECSA Member Organisations and other stakeholders to take action and act to change the gender imbalance we experience in the music industry today.


ECSA Gender Equality Charter

We pledge to:

  1. Improve equality and diversity at decision-making levels.
  2. Participate in or organize activities that promote equality and diversity in the music industry. And, in an opposite situation, for example men might choose to refrain from participating in an all-male panel.
  3. Take the necessary steps to compensate for the gender bias in the awarding of prizes and grants, always making sure that a gender balance should be met in the nomination process.
  4. Recruit employees, partners and suppliers from a wide talent pool.
  5. Adopt practices to welcome more female songwriters and composers as members of organisations where we have influence (CMO’s etc.).
  6. Work towards a balance in the programming of concerts, venues, festivals and panels.
  7. Share methods of increasing equality and diversity with others, so we can learn from each other.
  8. Increase the visibility of female role models at both an academic and a professional artistic level, and promote a wider variety of role models in the music industry.

You can find the PDF version of the Charter here.

 

ECSA Open Letter in support of the Copyright Directive

 

A Europe fit for the next generation of creators

 

Brussels, 7th of March 2019

Dear Member of the European Parliament,

I am writing to you on behalf of the European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA), which represents over 50,000 professional composers and songwriters in 27 European countries – to ask you to vote in favor of the Copyright Directive.

We are not asking you to take a pledge to vote for or against any Article of the Directive: we value your free judgment and we believe that the future of Europe does not rely on a single Article of any Directive. We simply support the whole Directive as a package, which will improve the position of Europe’s creators and their remuneration.

You have a unique opportunity to update the EU’s 20-year-old legislation on authors’ rights and make European copyright fit for purpose in the digital age. Since the early 2000s, the Internet has grown exponentially, and we embrace the opportunities it gives us to disseminate our works. But today’s Internet is very different from the one that existed at the time: the digital landscape moved from a free and diverse environment where small platforms were competing amongst each other to a place where a few gigantic and dominant players are able to dictate their terms to creators and users, not to mention citizens.

Those “technopolies” and their numerous sister organisations have been allowed to become as powerful as they are today because lawmakers have too often been afraid to set reasonable limits to their immense powers. It is now time to have the courage to reverse this trend and make sure that with great power should also come responsibilities.

After 30 months of democratic and comprehensive debates, the final text on the table is a fair and reasonable compromise which notably aims at rebalancing the relationship between creators, citizens and global platforms. Article 13 will NOT affect freedom of expression at all, it is adapted to the size of each platform and includes a specific carve out for start-ups, tailored to give them the possibility to grow and compete with tech giants.

Improving the remuneration of creators and fostering freedom of expression are two fundamental objectives that support each other. We want citizens to access and enjoy our works as much as possible and we believe that we should get a fair share of the value created by them. When a citizen enjoys a creative work on a global platform, the revenues generated should go mainly to those who created and invested in it, not to the platforms. This is what Article 13 is all about. For the tech industry, this is not about censoring the Internet “as we know it” but about saving “their” Internet, as a few of them own it.

More importantly, this Directive includes unprecedented harmonised provisions to the benefit of all authors and performers (Articles – 14 to 16A), small or big, to rebalance the systemic weak bargaining situation they find themselves in when they sign contracts with producers and publishers.

Thanks to the European Parliament, the Directive includes a principle of appropriate and proportionate remuneration, strong transparency obligations, a remuneration adjustment mechanism and a revocation right in case of a lack of exploitation. There is nothing falser than saying that this Directive only favors big rightholders and does nothing for creators. Those provisions, too often overlooked in the copyright debate, are a once in a generation opportunity to place creators at the center of copyright law and improve their remuneration.

This is not only about us, as authors, but about Europe’s independence and the future of Europe’s culture. After the EU Member States failed to impose fair taxes on digital giants, the European Parliament can now send a strong and positive signal to future generations who want to write, compose, create and be fairly remunerated for their creations.

                   ***

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 50,000 professional composers and songwriters in 27 European countries. With 58 member organizations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

Web: www.composeralliance.org

EU Transparency Register ID: 71423433087-91

You can find the PDF version of the letter here.

Debunking the myths around the Copyright Directive

 

Myth: “This Directive only favors big rightsholders and does nothing for creators”


FALSE!


So much biased disinformation (to say the least) is circulating on the Copyright Directive that the first thing you should do is to … READ it! It’s here. Do you often hear that it will only favor big rightsholders and do nothing for creators? Nothing is falser!

In fact, the Directive includes unprecedented EU harmonized provisions to the benefit of all authors and performers including small ones, to rebalance their systemic weak bargaining position when they sign contracts with producers and publishers and improve their remuneration. Despite a fierce opposition, the European Parliament succeeded to include additional protections for creators (Article – 14 and 16a) and to strengthen the provisions proposed by the European Commission (Articles 14, 15 and 16).

The European Parliament fought hard to include Article – 14, which establishes a right to appropriate and proportionate remuneration to the benefit of all authors and performers. It is the first time the EU recognizes such a right.

Article 14 now includes a strong transparency obligation to ensure authors and performers have access to relevant information about the exploitation of their works and performances across the whole value chain, including from sub-licensees.

Thanks to the European Parliament, this will enable creators to compare deals and better exploit new opportunities, including across borders. Today, creators are too often unable to effectively monitor the use, measure the commercial success and assess the
economic value of their works.

Article 15 introduces for the first time in EU law a strong contract adjustment mechanism (often called the “best-seller” clause) to ensure that creators can benefit from their successes. It includes a right to claim “additional, appropriate and fair remuneration”, in case the remuneration originally agreed turns out to be disproportionately low compared to all the exploitation revenues.

Article 16 sets out a voluntary, alternative dispute resolution procedure to help creators enforce their rights under Article 14 and 15, as a possible alternative to costly and lengthy legal procedures against publishers and producers.

The European Parliament also fought hard for Article 16A, which would introduce for the first time in EU law a right of revocation, based on a simple “use it or lose it principle”, allowing both creators to take back their rights when their works are not exploited and giving citizens access to our cultural diversity. In the current situation, authors are too often trapped into contracts applying for the entire duration of the copyright term (70 years after the death of the author) and for all territories in the world.

If the European Parliament rejects the Copyright Directive, it will throw to the bin all those improvements, showing to citizens and creators the EU’s failure to improve the livelihoods of millions of creators, who have been waiting 20 years to see those improvements adopted at EU level.

Time to make the right choice and adopt the Copyright Directive!

 

Myth: “Article 13 will break the Internet, affect freedom of expression and stifle innovation and creativity”


FALSE!

In fact, Article 13 aims at rebalancing the current unfair relationship between certain big platforms and the ones who created and invested in creative works. It requires certain big profit-making platforms with large amount of copyright works to get an authorisation from rights holders (paragraphs 1, 2 and 3) or to remove specific works, based on the information provided by rights holders (paragraph 4).

Who is concerned? See Article 2, paragraph 5 and the definition of online content sharing service provider. READ it! It is here:

It ONLY applies to those whose MAIN PURPOSE is to store and give access to a LARGE amount of copyright protected works uploaded by its users which it organises and promotes for PROFIT-MAKING purposes.

It does NOT apply to non-profit players, such as online encyclopedias, open source software platforms or online marketplaces. Neither to services whose main purpose is not giving access to large amount of copyright works for commercial purposes.

Who is responsible? Today, users are responsible for copyright infringement. With Article 13, USERS will NOT be responsible, but the PROFIT-MAKING platforms mentioned above will be (paragraph 2).

No threat to freedom of expression: Article 13 does NOT prevent people to upload their content, nor it will prevent them to freely upload content for the purpose of quotation, criticism, review, caricature, parody or pastiche. Freedom of expression is safeguarded for creators and citizens and protected from automatic blocking (paragraph 5). As authors, freedom of expression is in our DNA: we would not support any laws that limit it in any way.

No obligation to put “upload filters” in place: If no licences are available, those platforms need to be able to identify specific copyright protected content for which rightsholders provide relevant information. Any general monitoring obligation is explicitly banned (paragraph 4 and 7).

No one size fits all approach: In case rightholders do not want their content to feature on the platforms, the obligation to keep the content out will depend on the platforms’ type, their audience, their size, the works uploaded, the means available to them and their cost (paragraph 4a).

Special regime for start-ups: In order to create even more legal security for small players, Article 13 includes a specific regime for startups if a) they have existed for less than three years, b) generate less than 10 million euros in turnover annually and c) have an average number of monthly unique visitors below 5 million. They will benefit from a light regime altogether (paragraph 4aa).

Now ask yourself: when a citizen enjoys a creative work on a global profit-making platform, do you think the revenues generated should go mainly to those who created the work or to the platforms?

Time to read the text, be fair to creators and adopt the Copyright Directive!

Share the two fact sheets about these myths, that you can find here and here

 

News from Brussels – February 2019

 

ECSA Winter session 2019 – Thank you !

 

On 19th and 20th February, the ECSA Winter Session took place in Brussels. The ECSA team, wants to personally thank all the Members who had the chance to participate in the session last week. Once again, the committee meetings and the General Assembly provided the fantastic opportunity to discuss about our Creative Europe Projects, our different advocacy’s efforts as well as to brainstorm on the future of ECSA. Let’s continue to work together to continue advocating for the rights of music authors of all genres all over Europe and the world.

© Francois de Ribaucourt & Grégory de Leeuw

 

The Copyright Directive gets closer to the final vote in the European Parliament.Time to get ready for the final battle!

 

After a positive first endorsement by Member States during a COREPER meeting on 20 February, the European Parliament Legal Affairs committee (JURI) voted in favour of the provisional agreement on the Copyright Directive on 26 February with 16 votes in favour and 9 votes against. As a result, the next key step is now the final Plenary vote in the European Parliament, most probably on 26, 27 or 28 March 2019. If this vote is positive, Member States will have to formally adopt the provisional agreement before it can finally enter into force. As the opposition to the Directive is getting stronger, notably in Germany and Poland, it is essential to continue to reach out to Members of the European Parliament and push for its adoption. In the Council, most Member States (21) supported the Directive whereas Italy, Poland, the Netherlands, Finland and Luxembourg voted against the text. Belgium and Slovenia abstained. In the JURI committee, the EPP (7 MEPs), ALDE (2 MEPs), ENF (2 MEPs) voted in favor whereas the Greens (3 MEPs), GUE (1 MEP), voted against. The Socialists and Democrats (3 / 3), ECR (1/1) and EFDD were divided.

 

ECSA, together with authors’ organisations, welcomed the vote and called Members of the European Parliament to finally adopt the Directive without further delay

 

After the vote, ECSA, together with FERA, EWC and FSE welcomed in a joint press release “a strong, cross part support to the Europe’s creative community” (see here) and called all Members of the European Parliament to finally adopt the Directive. Two press articles referred to this press release (see here and here )

ECSA also joined forces with a wide number of organisations in favor of the Directive (see statement). We will continue to exchange and coordinate with them to push together for the final adoption of the Directive. The Copyright Directive’s provisional agreement is available here.

 

The European Parliament Culture Committee (CULT) adopts its position on the Creative Europe Program 

 

 

On 20th February 2019, the EP CULT committee adopted Mrs. Costa (S&D-IT) draft report on the next Creative Europe programme (2021 to 2027). The report, adopted unanimously with 28 votes in favour, no vote against and one abstention is largely positive and includes good provisions, in line with the position adopted by ECSA (see here) and joint voting recommendations with Impala and Liveurope. Most notably, the draft report includes amendments striving for a better reflection of the importance of the music sector, a higher budget dedicated to Creative Europe, a larger budget dedicated to the CULTURE sub-programme, the mobility and visibility of creators and repertoires, as well as positive language on the support to artistic freedom, cultural diversity and gender equality. The European Parliament will now most likely adopt Mrs. Costa report in plenary session at the end of March. Negotiations between the European Parliament will and the Council will start after the European elections in May.

 

ECCO Concert & Workshop, 2019 Brussels edition

 

 

On 18th February 2019, ECSA held for the very first time a workshop entitled ‘Inside the composers’ head: discovering contemporary art music’. This event was organised in order to create a space where composers and musicians of the upcoming ECCO concert could exchange impressions and answer audience’s questions about the pieces during the rehearsals. One of the attendees said: ‘It has been a great idea to create this space. It has helped me open my mind to create new music. Definitely, an interesting and enriching experience.’

The following day, on 19th February 2019, the ECCO concert took place at the same venue, Le Senghor, and featured the Ensemble Hopper conducted by François Deppe, who performed pieces from 7 composers from all over Europe and Israel. In addition, the electronic interpretation was provided by the renowned Centre Henri Pousseur from Liège.  The following pieces were featured:

–              Talia AMAR (Israel), Triangulation

–              Sampo HAAPAMÄKI (Filand), Logo

–              Gaëlle HYERNAUX (Belgium), Avatar

–              Jan FLESSEL (Denmark), Studies for Piano Trio – 3 Depictions of Night

–              Gilles DONEUX (Belgium), Defragmentation 2

–              Maija HYNNINEN (Finland), Winnowing

This 2019 Brussels edition was very successful, performing high quality works of mixed music and filling the concert venue with around 150 people. Take a look at the pictures from that evening here.

 

Welcome Hub established in Helsinki

 

 

A new Welcome Hub was established in Helsinki on the 20 February 2019. In line with ECSA‘s Creative Europe activity plan, a Welcome Hub for ECSA music writers is now established in Finland The Hub is set up in partnership with Suomen Musiikintekijät – Finnish Music Creators and was signed by FMC chair Kaija Kärkinen and ECSA president Alfons Karabuda, in Brussels. The hub will provide a first contact point and a possibility to exchange with peers and provide composers and songwriters with information and assistance. 

 You can find more information about ECSA’s Welcome Hubs by clicking here

© FMC

UNAC Campaign update

 

 

UNAC campaign continues with the support of ECSA and other organisations all over the world. The message behind the campaign is to put forward a pro authors message in favor of the Copyright Directive, easy to understand on social networks (on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter). Now more than ever we need to stand united and show the faces of all creators, a month before the final vote on the Copyright Directive.The process to participate is the following:

An author takes a picture of himself handing a tablet, laptop or smartphone on whose screen is displayed the message “404 ERROR, CREATORS NOT FOUND” (referring to the absence of content error). Preferably the background of the picture would showcase a well know place, such as a famous monument or square;

You would send the picture and the name of the Author, his function/job, and the location of the picture to contact@unac.info and marc.dumoulin@composeralliance.org.

UNAC and ECSA have been already receiving a lot of pictures namely from the UK and Spain, but welcome organisations from all the Member States to participate in the campaign!!

We really count on your support!

 

HARPA Nordic Film Composers Award 2019

 

 

HARPA Nordic Film Composers Award 2019 goes to composer Davíð Þór Jónsson and his director Benedikt Erlingsson. Concluding an Award Show at the beautiful Auditorium of the Felleshus of Nordische Botschaften, on February 12th 2019, the HARPA Nordic Film Composers Award was handed out for the 9th time as a part of Nordic Film Music Days 2019. More than 50 Nordic composers were present. 

© Thomas Kolbein Olsen, Berlinkontoret

 

ECSA Team update

The ECSA Staff welcomes Manon Chikh!

 

We are very happy to introduce you to our new trainee. Manon Chikh is a French student, passioned about music, finalizing her last year of master degree in European Affairs at Sciences Po Lyon. Manon joined the team in the beginning of February to help on advocacy and the upcoming projects.Let’s make her feel welcome !

© François De Ribaucourt

 

Leonardo 4 Children

 

On the occasion of the 500th anniversary of Leonardo da Vinci’s death (1519-2019), with a focus on art and science for children, the no-profit foundation “Carano 4 Children”[1] (the “foundation”) launched the flagship initiative « Leonardo 4 Children ». ECSA is proud to support this initiative and in particular the “Leonardo da Vinci’s Fables in music” European competition for 18-30 years old music composers. The “work” submitted for the competition shall be an original creation by the participants and consist in a musical interpretation of one Fable, chosen by the participants among the 10 Fables by Leonardo da Vinci. Click here to learn more about the requirements of the competition.

 

Press release – European Parliament’s Legal Affairs committee vote on the Copyright Directive

 

Authors’ organisations welcome a strong, cross-party support to Europe’s creative community

 

Brussels, 26th February 2019

Today, the European Parliament’s Legal Affairs committee adopted the provisional agreement on the Copyright Directive by 16 votes in favour and 9 against. As representatives of hundreds of thousands of authors, including film/TV directors, writers, literary translators, composers, songwriters, and screenwriters in Europe, we welcome this strong, cross-party support leading to the final adoption of the Directive.

We warmly thank all the MEPs who supported the Copyright Directive and in particular those who fought hard to strengthen the authors’ bargaining power and improve their remuneration. Today’s vote sends a positive and historical signal to all citizens who want to write, compose, create and be fairly remunerated for their work.

We now encourage all Members of the European Parliament to formally adopt the Copyright Directive without further delay.


___________________________________________
The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA)

The European Writers Council (EWC)

The Federation of European Film Directors (FERA)

The Federation of Screenwriters in Europe (FSE)

                   ***

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 30,000 professional composers and songwriters in 27 European countries. With 57 member organizations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

Web: www.composeralliance.org

EU Transparency Register ID: 71423433087-91

EWC, founded in 1977 in Germany and newly constituted in 2006 in Brussels as an international non-profit organisation, the European Writers’ Council is the federation of 45 European national organisations of professional writers and literary translators in all genres in 34 countries. EWC’s members represent more than 160,000 authors in the book sector.

Web: www.europeanwriterscouncil.eu

EU Transparency Register ID: 56788289570-24

The Federation of European Film Directors (FERA), founded in 1980, represents film and TV directors at European level, with 35 directors’ associations as members from 29 countries. We speak for more than 20,000 European screen directors, representing their cultural, creative and economic interests.

Web: www.filmdirectors.eu

EU Transparency Register ID: 29280842236-21

The Federation of Screenwriters Europe is a network of national and regional associations, guilds and unions of writers for the screen in Europe, created in June 2001. It comprises 25 organisations from 19 countries, representing more than 7,000 screenwriters in Europe.

Web: www.scenaristes.org

EU Transparency Register ID: 642670217507-74

You can download the PDF version here.

ECSA Press Release on the Informal Agreement on the Copyright Directive

 

ECSA welcomes a key step forward for music authors and encourages the European Parliament and Member States to formally adopt this essential piece of legislation without further delay

 

Brussels, 14 February 2019

On 13 February 2019, after years of negotiations and an unprecedented pressure from dominant corporate interests, the three European Institutions reached a provisional agreement on the Copyright Directive. The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA), which represents over 50,000 professional composers and songwriters in 26 European countries, welcomes this key step forward towards the final adoption of the Directive by the European Parliament and the Council.

Alfons Karabuda, ECSA President said: “On behalf of the music authors community, let me first thank all the negotiators for reaching such an agreement. It was said to be the once in a generation reform, and the EU can be proud of the deal reached yesterday. This is a strong and positive signal to all authors who want to write, compose, create and be fairly remunerated for their creations.”

ECSA welcomes in particular the provisions that reinforce and rebalances the position of rightholders for the online exploitation of their content on video-sharing platforms (Article 13) and provides their users legal certainty in regards to their uploads. We also commend the EU negotiators for including key provisions that acknowledge the imbalance that authors face in front of their contractual partners and the urgent need for change (Chapter 3). In addition, the inclusion of a mandatory right of revocation – which would grant to authors the possibility to claim back their rights in case their works are not exploited – has the potential to empower music authors and ensure a wider access to our common cultural diversity across the EU.

Alfons Karabuda concluded: “If this agreement is confirmed, this will be the first time that the EU adopts basic standards of transparency and fairness to the benefit of authors. It will also greatly contribute to put an end to the unfair transfer of value from creators to a few big platforms and bring more justice and fairness to the digital world. We now hope that the European Parliament and the Council will finally adopt it and turn a blind eye to the interests of a few multinational tech companies who still claim that this Directive will “lead to censorship” to preserve their own business models. The Copyright Directive can greatly contribute to promote a sustainable future for Europe’s authors and cultural diversity. Let’s not miss this chance.”

You can download the PDF version here.

ECSA statement for a successful agreement on the Copyright Directive: Time to make the right choice for a creative Europe!

 

Brussels, 11 February 2018

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 50,000 professional composers and songwriters in 26 European countries. Together with the European cultural and creative sectors, we welcome the significant progress achieved so far on the Copyright Directive and support a successful agreement at this week’s trilogue meetings.  

Now, more than ever, we strongly support the two main overarching objectives of this Directive: reinforce the position of rightholders for the online exploitation of their content on video-sharing platforms (Article 13) and improve the remuneration and contractual position of authors and performers (Chapter 3). While the current compromise put forward by the Romanian Presidency should still be improved, we call on the negotiators to adopt Article 13 as well as ambitious and meaningful Chapter 3 provisions, including a right to fair and proportionate remuneration (Article – 14) and a mandatory right of revocation (Article 16a). 

Together with the European creative sector as whole, we have supported Article 13 in a constructive and positive manner so that it can improve the value of creative works for the whole value chain and for all rightsholders, including producers and publishers. At this key juncture of the final political process, some of them have been voicing their concerns about its current wording and took this opportunity to question other provisions, notably Chapter 3 of the Copyright Directive, which includes necessary key provisions to rebalance the systemic weak bargaining situation of creators in their contractual relationship with producers and publishers.

Such an opportunistic, short-term and individualistic perspective shows a profound disrespect for authors and performers, whose creativity is the core value of the cultural industries’ business model, and not merely an adjustment variable. It also expresses an unfortunate disregard for EU policy makers who seek to create a fair level playing field for all players along the creative value chain. We are confident that the three European Institutions will ignore those last-minute attempts to undermine the harmonisation and inclusion of basic standards of transparency and fairness in EU copyright legislation. 

It is now time for the EU to send a strong and positive signal to future generations who want to write, compose, create and be fairly remunerated for their creations. It is now time to make the right choice and adopt the Copyright Directive without further due. 

_______________________________________________

Alfons Karabuda, Swedish composer, President of the European Composer and Songwriter Alliance.

Marc du Moulin, Secretary General of the European Composer and Songwriter Alliance.

You can download the PDF version here.

News from Brussels – January 2019

Copyright Directive: No agreement reached yet but negotiations are intensifying.

On 18 January 2019, Member States were not yet ready to agree on the Council’s position on some of the provisions of the Copyright Directive. As a result, the last trilogue meeting between the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council, foreseen on 21 January, was canceled. Member States (most notably France and Germany) are now making their best efforts to reach an agreement amongst themselves and finally find a deal with the European Commission and the European Parliament in the coming days. Despite this delay, the European Commission, the Romanian Presidency of the Council, as well as the rapporteur Mr. Voss have shown their willingness to get an agreement as soon as possible. In order to get the Directive adopted before the next European elections, it is key that the three EU Institutions find a deal by mid-February. Once a deal is reached, the European Parliament will have to adopt it (before the next European elections in May) before it can finally be formally adopted by the EU. ECSA is continuously very much engaged in favor of the Copyright Directive. Please see below our efforts.

 

Authors’ Group Open Letter in support of the Copyright Directive

On 28 January, ECSA finalized an Authors’ Group open letter (see here) with its members (FERA, FSE, EFJ and EWC) to advocate for an agreement and underline the importance of the Chapter 3 provisions (fair remuneration for authors and performers). Please make sure to spread the word and share the news!

 

ARTICLE13.org NEW WEBSITE

 

As for Article 13 of the Copyright Directive (transfer of value/value gap), ECSA has worked with various partners on a dedicated website to promote the facts regarding Article 13 and counter the fake news and the tech industry campaign against it. Please make sure to spread the word and share the news!

 

ECCO CONCERT

Only 20 days to the #ECCO Concert and there are still seats available!

Don’t forget to reserve your spot by writing an email to:  alicja.swierczek@composeralliance.org

Check our Press release right here.

 

ECCO WORKSHOP – Programme

ECSA is happy to hold this unique workshop giving a glimpse into composers’ heads at “Le Senghor, Centre Culturel d’Etterbeek” on 18th February 2019.

Here we present the updated schedule:
14:00-14:45 Talia Amar, Triangulation (piano)
14:45-15:30 Sampo Haapamäki, Logo (violin)
15:30-16:15 Gaëlle Hyernaux , Avatar (cello)
16:15-17:15 Jan Flessel, 3 Depictions of Night (piano, cello et violin)
– Break
19:15-20:15 Gilles Doneux, Defragmentation 2 (tutti)
20:15-21:00 Maija Hynninen, Winnowing (piano)

Entrance is free, reservation is mandatory via alicja.swierczek@composeralliance.org

 

Meeting of the Advisory Board on two studies in the context of the Preparatory Action “Music Moves Europe”

 

 

On 18 January 2019, the members of the advisory board discussed two forthcomings studies on 1) the feasibility of a European Music Observatory and 2) analysis of market trends and gaps in funding needs for the music sector in Europe. In case you are interested in contributing to those studies, we and the research team would very much welcome your input (please see the info sent by the ECSA office and do not hesitate to contact us for more information).

 

CAPACITY TRIANGLE: Save the Date!

ECSA is excited to announce that the 2019 edition of the Capacity Triangle is finally here! This year the event will take place on the 25th March at the  Beursschouwburg in Brussels.

An exciting day for composers and musicians organised in partnership with one of ECSA Belgian members, GALM #UnitingArtistsinMusic and more partners!

More information on the Event will soon be available on ECSA’s website!

 

European Film Music Day: Save the Date!

Picture of the event : European Film Music Day a la FNAC. Credit: © Guillaume Lutz/Quinzaine des Réalisateurs

Mark your calendars! This year the European Film Music Day will take place in Cannes on 20 May 2019.

The European Film Music Day (EFMD) is a one day event bringing together audio-visual composers, film directors, producers and professionals alike. It is held in the framework of the Cannes Film Festival on a yearly basis.

More information on the event will soon be available on ECSA’s website!

 

UNAC launches 404 CREATORS NOT FOUND Campaign

Are you a creator? Take a picture and get the chance to be featured in UNAC+ECSA campaign!!
The idea is to put forward a pro authors message in favor of the Copyright Directive, easy to understand on social networks (notably on Instagram and on Twitter).
The process is the following:

An author takes a picture of himself handing a tablet, laptop or smartphone on whose screen is displayed the message “404 ERROR, CREATORS NOT FOUND” (referring to the absence of content error). Preferably the background of the picture would showcase a well know place, such as a famous monument or square;
You would send the picture and the name of the Author, his function/job, and the location of the picture to contact@unac.info, alessandra.callegari@composeralliance.org, and marc.dumoulin@composeralliance.org.
UNAC and ECSA will then use several hashtags such as #noCreatorsNoInternet, #createyourinternet, #SaYestothe#CopyrightDirective and publish it tagging various MEPs from the countries corresponding to the picture.

Image credit: UNAC 

 

ECSA X BAM! on Eurosonic/Noorderslag

In the picture from left to right: Aafke Romeijn, Silvina Munich, Natalia Vergara, Jess Partridge, Sine Tofte Hannibal and Pauwke Berkers. Image Credit: Natalia Vergara 

Together with Buma/Stemra, BAM! organized a panel on gender diversity in the music industry at Eurosonic/Noorderslag: “Pushing for change from within: how we move forward for gender equality in the music industry.  Moderator Aafke Romeijn (BAM! and APCOE member) invited ECSA members Sine Tofte Hannibal and Natalia Vergara amongst others to talk about different strategies to increase gender diversity in pop music. Both Sine and Natalia and Aafke are part of the ECSA Gender Diversity Working Group. Natalia talked about her female composers collective Señoritas On Fire and AMCE, the Female Composers Association initiated. Sine elaborated on research she did on the gender gap in classical repertoire. The panel was very well attended gave an inspiring overview on different modi operandi and their effectiveness. Concluding we could say that by now there’s enough research and evidence to state the music business has a problem with diversity, and it’s time to take affirmative action to improve the industry.

 

HARPA NORDIC FILM MUSIC DAYS

In connection with the upcoming Berlinale, HARPA Nordic Film Music Days will once again take place at Nordische Botchaften in Berlins Tiergarten area. More than 50 Nordic composers will be present.
In cooperation with NORWAY HOUSE, close to European Film Market, Nordic composers will speed meet directors and producers, have a meet and greet and at the embassy area, there will be seminars and lectures.

Click here to read about the Harpa Awards.

 

UNAC invited to represent authors and composers at the UPAD

From left to right in the picture :David Ribotti, dubbing author, Claire Giraudin from Sacem Université, Vanessa Bertran, dubbing author, and chairwoman of UPAD
© Olivier Delevingne

UNAC was invited to represent authors and composers at the UPAD (French Guild of Dubbing Authors) professional author’s right day on January 18th in Dijon, Burgundy, France. Together, these professional organizations have informed the authors about the recent reforms that affect their social protection, and about collective management, with the collaboration of Sacem also present. The debate on the stakes of the European directive was also one of the topics that were widely discussed.

 

The ECSA Staff welcomes Alfonso Guerra!

Image credit: Alfonso Guerra

We are very happy to introduce you to our new trainee!

Alfonso Guerra is a twenty-seven-year-old composer based in Brussels, student in his last year of his master’s degree at the Conservatoire Royal de Bruxelles! Alfonso joined the ECSA team in Brussels at the beginning of January to support with the upcoming projects! Let’s make him feel welcomed.

 

Classical:NEXT reveals PROGRAMME

Image Credit: Classical:NEXT© Michael Mann

The conference announced the first parts of its programme, including an opening ceremony curated by Composer and National Sawdust co-founder and artistic director Paola Prestini. The Classical:NEXT Innovation Awards will celebrate women in music in honour of the 200th birthday of German pianist and composer Clara Schumann.

ECSA is happy to partner up with Nieuw Geneco to give young composers the opportunity in taking part in the international platform for exchange, debate & collaboration that Classical:NEXT provides. Each composer is paired with a Classical:NEXT-insider, who will introduce the composers to the community (and vice versa), bringing them into personal contact with relevant individuals and organizations as well as exchanging knowledge. For more information, see here.

 

*** *** ***

 

 

 

 

About ECSA:

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 30,000 professional composers and songwriters in 26 European countries. With 54 member organisations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

www.composeralliance.org

For the News from Brussels in pdf format, please click here

 

eu_flag_creative_europe_co_funded_pos_rgb_right

SAVE THE DATE! THE CAPACITY TRIANGLE IS FINALLY COMING TO BRUSSELS!

Brussels, 8th February 2019

The “We are Music” Edition of the Capacity Triangle will take place in Brussels, in the frame of an exciting new partnership with SABAM, PlayRight+ and GALM #UnitingArtistsInMusic.The one-day event will take place on the 25th of March from 09:30 to 17:00 at the Beursschouwburg.
Drinks, music and networking will follow.

The Capacity Triangle is dedicated to any composers and musicians that are eager to foster their entrepreneurial, digital, copyright and publishing skills.Throughout the day, different panel discussions will provide the audience with the necessary tips and knowledge to face the challenges of the 2019 evolving music scene.

Capacity Triangle offers an incredible opportunity for composers and musicians to be empowered by other fellow experts’ experiences and practices in the music industry.The audience will be welcome to interact with the speakers by taking part in the discussion and asking questions.

We are looking forward to welcoming all the attendees to our event!!
You will find more information on our event on Facebook and don’t forget to reserve your spot by clicking here.

Please click here for the PDF version of the Press Release.

JOINT STATEMENT: THE EU URGENTLY NEEDS REMUNERATION RULES FOR AUTHORS AND PERFORMERS

As the negotiations on the proposed Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market are drawing to a conclusion, European and international authors and performers’ organisations from all sectors urge the EU negotiators to strengthen the much-needed Article -14 providing for fair and proportionate remuneration for authors and performers, and to adopt Articles 14, 15 and 16 as they stand, as a first step in the right direction to reform EU copyright to the benefit of Europe’s authors and performers.
The opening provision in Chapter 3 sets a fundamental guiding principle for the remuneration of authors and performers, which should be fair and proportionate to all revenues generated by their work.

Capital and business in the cultural and creative industries have long enjoyed a dominant position over authors and performers, who are grossly underpaid for their work and can barely sustain a decent living as freelancers or employees. The overall regulatory environment supporting the cultural and creative industries does not adequately protect them, as the weakest party, it mostly supports the industry.

The core value of the copyright licensing system relies on the creativity of authors and performers. Their remuneration should therefore be at the heart of the industries’ business model and not be considered merely as an adjustment variable.

This is what Article -14 and Recital 39y should acknowledge: that authors and performers must get a fair share of all the revenues generated by their work. In light of the unbalanced bargaining position of most authors and performers when discussing their terms and conditions of engagement, various mechanisms exist today to warrant their proportionate remuneration across cultural and creative sectors worldwide. The proportionate remuneration of authors and performers and the principle asserting it must encompass all such mechanisms. Art -14 must therefore clarify that Member States shall implement the principle of fair and proportionate remuneration through different mechanisms, including collective bargaining agreements, collective rights management or statutory remuneration mechanisms, to collectively protect authors and performers and address the specificities of each sector and category of creators.

We call on the EU institutions to strengthen Article -14 and Recital 39y and caution against the adoption of any element that would marginalise authors and performers or deprive them of a fair and proportionate share of the revenue generated by their work.

It is now up to the Council, the European Parliament and Commission to deliver on previous general statements in favour of authors and performers. It is time to agree, in this last round of trilogue negotiations, on a meaningful Article -14 that is a first step forward in ensuring Member States provide authors and performers with a fair and equitable remuneration from digital services when their works and performances are made available online. We also urge the Council, the European Parliament and Commission to adopt Articles 14, 15 and 16 as they currently are and resist calls to weaken them further.

You can download the PDF version here.

Authors’Group open letter in support of the Copyright Directive

 

Brussels, 28 January 2019


Dear President Tusk,


Dear Prime Minister Dăncilă,


Dear Minister Ciamba,


Dear Minister,

The Authors’ Group is the primary Europe’s Authors’ network representing more than 500 000 authors, including journalists, film/TV directors, writers, literary translators, composers, songwriters, photographers, and screenwriters in Europe.

Together, we have determinedly supported the adoption of the Copyright Directive, which aims at improving the situation of European authors and strengthening the copyright intensive industries, which account for more than 7 million jobs in the EU. We welcome the significant progress achieved so far and call on the negotiators to reach an agreement without further delay.

Chapter 3 sets out essential provisions to partially rebalance the systemic weak bargaining situation of authors, whose creativity is at the very origin of the copyright value chain, in negotiating their contracts. Most of these provisions (Article 14, 15 and 16) have already been agreed and are the result of balanced compromises between the three institutions. Reopening them would only delay the negotiations further for the sole benefit of major international players who ignore the damage caused to the press and creative industries by their dominant position and refuse the harmonisation and inclusion of basic standards of transparency and fairness in EU copyright legislation.

On 12 September 2018, the European Parliament adopted two additional key provisions (Articles -14 and 16A) by an overwhelming majority. They establish a simple, yet historical, set of overarching principles ensuring that authors (i) receive fair and proportionate remuneration for the exploitation of their works and (ii) benefit from a right of revocation when their works are not exploited.

We strongly support those two provisions which offer authors and creators a remuneration they desperately need to continue to exist and uphold the value of the copyright licensing system. A few months before the EU elections, throwing the Directive away by postponing its adoption would be an appalling failure and a missed opportunity for our creative community and for the EU itself, signaling to citizens the EU’s inability to address these important questions.

It is now time to act: please adopt the Copyright Directive with its protective measures towards authors and creators and promote a sustainable future for Europe’s cultural diversity!

———————————————

CC: Permanent and Deputy Permanent Representatives of the Member States to the
European Union.

President of the European Parliament, Mr. Tajani.

Chair of the Committee on Legal Affairs in the European Parliament, Mr. Svoboda.

Rapporteur, Shadow Rapporteurs and Members of the European Parliament negotiating team.

President of the European Commission, Mr. Juncker.

Vice President of the European Commission, Mr. Ansip.

Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mrs. Gabriel.

Director-General, DG Communications, Networks, Content and Technology, Mr. Viola.

______________________________

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 50,000 professional composers and songwriters in 27 European countries. With 56 member organizations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

Web: www.composeralliance.org / EU Transparency Register ID: 71423433087-91

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is the largest organization of journalists in Europe, representing over 320.000 journalists in 61 journalists’ organizations across 40 countries. The EFJ fights for social and professional rights of journalists working in all sectors of the media through strong trade unions. It strives to maintain or create environments in which quality, journalistic independence, pluralism, public service values and decent work in the media exist.

Web: www.europeanjournalists.org / EU Transparency Register ID: 27471236588-39

EWC, founded in 1977 in Germany and newly constituted in 2006 in Brussels as an international non-profit organisation, the European Writers’ Council is the federation of 45 European national organisations of professional writers and literary translators in all genres in 34 countries. EWC’s members represent more than 160,000 authors in the book sector.

Web: www.europeanwriterscouncil.eu / EU Transparency Register ID: 56788289570-24

The Federation of European Film Directors (FERA), founded in 1980, represents film and TV directors at European level, with 35 directors’ associations as members from 29 countries. We speak for more than 20,000 European screen directors, representing their cultural, creative and economic interests.

Web: www.filmdirectors.eu / EU Transparency Register ID: 29280842236-21

The Federation of Screenwriters Europe is a network of national and regional associations,guilds and unions of writers for the screen in Europe, created in June 2001. It comprises 25 organisations from 19 countries, representing more than 7,000 screenwriters in Europe.

Web: www.scenaristes.org / EU Transparency Register ID: 642670217507-74

You can download the PDF version here.

News from Brussels – December 2018

 

ECCO selection announced

On the 3rd of December 2018, the ECCO Artistic Committee consisting of chair Dušan Bavdek, Jana Andreevska, Lorenzo Carola, Stijn Boeve (Centre Henri Pousseur) and François Couvreur (Ensemble Hopper) came together to select the pieces for the next ECCO concert, taking place on the 19th of February 2019 at Espace Senghor in Brussels.

The selected pieces and composers are:

Triangulation by Talia Amar (Israel)

Defragmentation 2 by Gilles Doneux (Belgium)

Studies for Piano Trio – 3 Depictions of Night by Jan Flessel (Denmark)
Logo by Sampo Haapamäki (Finland) 

Avatar by Gaëlle Hyernaux (Belgium)

Winnowing by Maija Hynninen (Finland)

Gestures No.1. (Presentiment) by Gyula Pintér (Hungary)

For more information, see here.

Image credit: Ensemble Hopper


ECSA invites you to the workshop “Inside the composer’s head – discovering contemporary art music”


Make sure not to miss the extra event that ECSA is organising in the framework of ECCO! To augment the audience’s experience, a special workshop will be set up the day before the concert. “Inside the composer’s head – discovering contemporary art music” is a workshop where the ensemble and the composers meet to rehearse and discuss the performance of the pieces. It will be a unique opportunity to interested parties to ask the composers questions about the pieces, the
composition process and any other burning questions. The workshop will be held on 18
th of February 2019 at Espace Senghor.

Click here for more information.

 

EU AFFAIRS UPDATE

Political agreement reached on the Satellite and Cable Directive – Good news for creators!

On the 13th of December 2018, the European Parliament, the European Commission and the European Council reached a political agreement on the Satellite and Cable Directive, after more than two years of discussion. This agreement is good news for ECSA members and collective management organisations since it a) extends mandatory collective management to certain additional types of retransmissions and b) includes some useful language to clarify the legal regime applicable to the use of “direct injection” technologies by broadcasters. In practice, the current legal and technological practices linked to direct injection affects one of the major sources of revenue for collective management societies, and negatively impacts all creators. ECSA has been advocating for such an outcome, together with a wide range of stakeholders and published this press release (see here) to welcome the agreement.

 

Copyright Directive: No deal reached, next Trilogue in mid-January

Keep up the fight!

On the 13th of December 2018, the European Parliament, the European Commission and the European Council met to discuss again a potential final agreement on the Copyright Directive. The three institutions made some progress on certain aspects of the Directive, notably on Article – 14 (Principle of fair and proportionate remuneration), 11 (Publisher’s right) and 13 (Value Gap). Article 16A (Right of revocation) has not been discussed, but could be sacrificed in the final negotiations due to the heavy lobbying of big producers/publishers. On Article 13, the European Commission issued a proposal that includes some negative aspects regarding the mitigation measures. The next and, most likely, last Trilogue is expected to take place between 14 and 17 of January 2019 whereas the final EP vote could take place in March. In order to weigh on the discussions, ECSA sent to relevant Members of the European Parliament a joint ECSA-EWC paper on the right of revocation. ECSA also co-signed with several organisations of the creative and cultural sectors (music, audiovisual, books and others) a joint letter on Article 13 which – in reaction to the European Commission’s non paper andproposal – recalls the EU institutions the main aspects which need to be retained and calls to examine any possible mitigation measures with caution. We encourage all ECSA members to continue to advocate for the adoption of the Directive with strong provisions on Articles 13 and 16A.

 

ECSA welcomes the EP vote on the new framework research programme which supports the EP cultural and creative industries

On 12 December 2018, the European Parliament adopted its position on “Horizon Europe”, the next framework programme on research and innovation for the years 2021 to 2027, which includes a new and specific cluster “’Inclusive & Creative Society” that would support research on cultural and creative sectors (including EU’s cultural heritage). ECSA co-signed a letter with a wide range of organisations in the cultural and creative sectors to welcome such an outcome and ask Member States to take into account the EP position.

 

Europe for Creators launches article13.orgPart of an effort to counter YouTube’s massive disinformation campaign

Europe for Creators announced on Thursday 20th of December that it was launching a website and a newsletter as part of a renewed effort to counter YouTube’s massive disinformation campaign around Article 13 of the European Copyright Directive.

The new tools are part of an effort to fight back with facts. The website, www.article13.org, and the newsletter, INSIDE13, take a no-nonsense approach to the issue that gets back to basics: what do the Directive’s texts actually say and how does the process work? Google has used its financial power and its YouTube platform to organize one of the largest — and most misleading — lobbying campaigns the European Union has seen in recent years. YouTube executives have claimed that Article 13 would cripple its service in Europe, with tens of millions of accounts deleted. The platform and its allies have pressured young users of its platform to spread such misleading claims about Article 13.

 

Cultural sector call on the revision of the Visa Code

ECSA, together with 78 organisations from the cultural sector joined forces in a call to the European Institutions regarding the Revision of the Visa Code. The joint letter calls to take into consideration the specific needs of the sector in the context of the Trilogue negotiations and underlines that the cultural sector in Europe desires transparent and easy application processes when inviting artists, cultural professionals, touring groups, and others from visa-required countries.

 

MEMBERS NEWS

CLASSICAL:NEXT FELLOWSHIP PROGRAMME FOR COMPOSERS 2019

ECSA is happy to partner up with Nieuw Geneco to give young composers the opportunity in taking part in the international platform for exchange, debate and collaboration Classical:NEXT. Each composer is paired with a Classical:NEXT-insider, who will introduce the composers to the community (and vice versa), bringing them into personal contact with relevant individuals and organizations as well as exchanging knowledge. A team of music professionals (publishers, programmers of venues, festivals) will do the matchmaking.

For more information see here.

 

BASCA announces new senior hires, new strategy and rebrand in 2019

As part of an ambitious strategy for growth, including an exciting rebrand in 2019, BASCA Chair Crispin Hunt introduced the appointment of Graham Davies as Interim CEO for a further year, following the news earlier this week that Vick Bain has stepped down from the position after a thirteen-year tenure at BASCA. In addition, as part of changes implemented to develop the governance of BASCA with a new Board and Committees elected in the summer, two new Independent Director posts were created, with MEP Emma McClarkin and music lawyer Julia Montero recently appointed.
 
You can find BASCA website story here, post on Twitter here, Facebook here & LinkedIn here.

Photo credit BASCA

Photo: Crispin Hunt, Julia Montero, Emma McClarkin and Graham Davies

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About ECSA:

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 30,000 professional composers and songwriters in 26 European countries. With 54 member organisations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

www.composeralliance.org

For the News from Brussels in pdf format, please click here

 

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PRESS RELEASE – ECCO CONCERT SELECTION – BRUSSELS, FEBRUARY 2019

17th December 2018

Dušan Bavdek, the chair of the ECCO Working Group, sums up the selection process as follows:

On 3 December, the ECCO Artistic Committee, consisting of Jana Andreevska (North Macedonia), Lorenzo Carola (Belgium), Stijn Boeve (Centre Henri Pousseur), François Couvreur (Ensemble Hopper) and myself as a chair met in Brussels to select the programme for the 12th ECCO Concert. I would like to sincerely thank the ECSA members from 13 European countries for submitting 28 interesting, diverse and quality pieces for instruments and electronics. I hope for an even wider response to finally cover all the ECSA member societies in the future ECCO calls.

In this regard, ECSA and the ECCO Artistic Committee are pleased to announce the names of the composers and their pieces that will be performed at the next edition of the ECCO concert at Espace Senghor in Brussels on 19th February 2019.

The following pieces will be performed by Ensemble Hopper under the direction of conductor François Deppe and with the technical assistance and expertise of the renowned Centre Henri Pousseur:

  • Triangulation by Talia Amar (Israel)
  • Defragmentation 2 by Gilles Doneux (Belgium)
  • Studies for Piano Trio – 3 Depictions of Night by Jan Flessel (Denmark)
  • Logo by Sampo Haapamäki (Finland)
  • Avatar by Gaëlle Hyernaux (Belgium)
  • Winnowing by Maija Hynninen (Finland)
  • Gestures No. 1 (Presentiment) by Gyula Pintér (Hungary)

Make sure not to miss the extra event that ECSA is organising in the framework of ECCO!

To augment the audience’s experience, a special workshop will be set up the day before the concert. “Inside the composer’s head – discovering contemporary art music” is a workshop where the ensemble and the composers meet to rehearse and discuss the pieces. It will be a unique opportunity for interested parties to ask the composers questions about the pieces, the composition process and pose any other burning questions.

Time and place: 18th February 2019 at Espace Senghor.

Click here for more information or contact Alicja Swierczek alicja.swierczek@composeralliance.org

PRESS RELEASE – The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance welcomes the EU political agreement on the Satellite and Cable Directive

 

13 December 2018 

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) welcomes the political agreement reached today on the Satellite and Cable Directive. The political agreement was reached between the European Parliament, the European Commission and the Council after more than two years of discussion. The institutions will now work on fine-tuning the deal before it goes back to the European Parliament and the Council for final approval, potentially in February.

All composers and songwriters warmly thank the European Parliament, Members States and the European Commission for their efforts in safeguarding the rights of creators while ensuring a wider use of broadcasters’ programmes. In particular, we congratulate all those who worked hard to address the so-called “direct injection” technology in an efficient and fair manner. Today’s agreement should soon put an end to the current unjustified resource transfer which negatively affects all European creators.

ECSA now encourages the European Parliament and the Council to formally approve this Directive as soon as possible and looks forward to its successful implementation at national level. 

News from Brussels – November 2018

 

ECSA Winter Session 2019 will take place on 18, 19 and 20 February 2019 in Brussels

 

ECSA is happy to inform all the members that the Winter Session 2019 will take place on 18, 19 and 20 February 2019 in Brussels and it will host ECSA’s internal meetings, as well as the ECCO concert. It marks a special edition of the ECSA Sessions as the new members of the executive body of the three ECSA Committees (the Committee for Composers of Film and Audiovisual Music – FFACE, the Committee for composers of Popular Music – APCOE and the Committee for Composers of Art and Classical Music – ECF) will be elected during the General Assembly.

 

Welcome Hub established in Norway

 

In line with ECSA’s Creative Europe activity plan, a Welcome Hub for music writers has been established in Norway. The Hub is set up in partnership with NOPA (Norwegian Society of Composers and Lyricists) and was signed by NOPA’s Chair, Ingrid Kindem and ECSA’s President, Alfons Karabuda, in Mexico City.

The hub will provide a first contact point and a possibility to exchange with peers and provide composers and songwriters with information and assistance. It will also benefit from local social events and networking opportunities with their peers in Norway. Furthermore, the Hub aims to broaden the horizons of creators and in turn generate network possibilities.

Photo credit: Alfons Karabuda

ECSA encourages other members to become Welcome Hubs. For more information on how to become a Welcome Hub, please contact Project Officer, Alessandra Callegari at alessandra.callegari@composeralliance.org for further information and detailed next steps.

 

ECSA meeting with ECSA French Members and SACEM

 

ECSA Secretary General, Marc du Moulin, met with ECSA French Members (SNAC, UCMF and UNAC) and SACEM in Paris on 28 November 2018. This meeting was an excellent opportunity to present ECSA’s activities, exchange views on various policy files (Copyright Directive, “SatCab” Proposal) and discuss future potential common initiatives in 2019.

 

ECSA meeting with Luxembourgish Member

 

ECSA Secretary General, Marc du Moulin, met with the Luxembourgish Member, Fédération Luxembourgeoise des Auteurs et Compositeurs (FLAC) in Luxembourg on 14 November 2018. This meeting was an excellent opportunity to exchange views, present ECSA activities and discuss the state of play on the Copyright Directive. On 15 November, Marc du Moulin also met with different representatives of Luxembourg cultural sector (SACEM/Luxembourg, Film Fund and others), together with various Members of FLAC, in order to discuss several files and explore potential common initiatives in 2018.

 

STAMP – Training and Lifelong Learning for Music Professionals

 

On Thursday 29 November, ECSA joined the European Music Council and its partners on the final event of the 2 years Erasmus Plus Project #STAMP, that developed training activities for music professionals between Eastern and Western European countries. Our team learned about current webinars initiatives and about “YEMP” a new model for festival management. They got insights on audience development through social media and were presented an online course about international cooperation & networking in the music sector.

Please find more information about the STAMP project with the database with the online presentations and courses at: https://stamp-music.org

 

Brussels office update

 

Alessandra Callegari (Italy) joined ECSA’s team in August as a Trainee and just became Project Officer. She comes to ECSA with 2 years of international experience first as an Admissions Representative and then as Business Manager at “Up with People”, a global education program whose goal is to bridge cultural barriers and create global understanding through service and music. She is particularly interested in creating music events that not only manage to bring people together, but also impact and influence quality of life and policy making. Acting and singing enthusiast, she recently moved to Brussels after living in Glasgow and Berlin for her studies. She holds a Bachelor Degree in International and Diplomatic Sciences and she is currently completing her Master in Cultural Diplomacy and International Music.

 

EU AFFAIRS UPDATE

 

Update on the Copyright Directive

 

The Copyright Directive has been intensely discussed by the representatives of the three European Institutions in November, with a view to finalize an agreement in December. Progress has been made on the transparency triangle (Articles 14 to 16) with some good first results that need to be confirmed but the new positive provisions adopted by the European Parliament (Article – 14 and Article 16A) are still facing opposition from Member States. The European Institutions also started to discuss Article 13 – which is generating a massive opposition from platforms – but did not agree on a common text, although it now becomes clearer that the European Parliament is moving towards the position of the Council. The negotiations will intensify in the coming weeks, with a view to reach an agreement on 13/14 December (last date foreseen for the trilogues negotiations).

ECSA continued to advocate for its position on those two aspects of the Directive notably through 1) a further joint letter with the European Writers Council to support the right of revocation in the final Directive b) one joint letter with all members of the Author’s Group, in advance of the COREPER which took place on 30 November c) one joint letter from ECSA-GESAC-IFPI-Impala to counter the “Youtube Fear Mongering” on Article 13. ECSA also met several Members of the European Parliament, Permanent Representations and the European Commission to support those positions and encourages other Members to convey ECSA positions to their national Ministers and Members of the European Parliament.

 

Update on the Sat-Cab Proposal

 

Unfortunately, the three European institutions did not reach an agreement on the “SatCab Proposal” on 28 November, despite the call from several organisations (including ECSA) to adopt this key Proposal. ECSA, together with its partners, will continue to advocate for the swift adoption of the file.

 

Joint music sector statement on YouTube’s fact-free fear-mongering campaign

ECSA joined ICMP, GESAC, IFPI and IMPALA for a joint Music Sector Statement condemning YouTube’s Fact-Free campaign against Article 13 of the Copyright Directive as a proof of total lack of respect for the EU democratic process of law making:

“Many thousands of international artists, authors, publishers, labels, managers, songwriters have urged the EU to find a solution to the value gap. YouTube’s eleventh-hour campaign of fact-free fear-mongering should be seen for what it is: an attempt to derail the EU democratic legislative process.”

Click here for the full statement.

And here for another article on the European Music Societies’ Reaction to YouTube’s campaign.

 

First Advisory Board meeting on the feasibility study for the establishment of a European Music Observatory

 

On Tuesday, the 13 November, ECSA took part in the first Advisory Board meeting on the feasibility study for the establishment of a European Music Observatory. The study will be conducted by KEA European Affairs and Panteia and will consult the Board to take into account various interests and perspectives across the European Music spectrum.

The Board was established as a stakeholder consultation tool, a quality control mechanism and a  tool to support a harmonised approach. Together with ECSA, the Board includes organisations like the European Music Council, IMPALA, Live DMA, GESAC and the European Broadcasting Union.

The feasibility study comes as one of the actions undertaken under the Music Moves Europe Programme and it will investigate the possible future full-scale establishment of a data collection organisation as a core strategic resource to drive relevance and value for future policy actions in the music portfolio and across the sector.

In the context of the EU budgetary procedure for 2018, the European Parliament secured a budget of 1.5m EUR for a Preparatory Action “Music Moves Europe: Boosting European music diversity and talent” with the aim to support European diversity and talent, the competitiveness of the sector as well as increase access of citizens to music in all its variety.

 

MEMBERS NEWS

 

OEGZM launches call for works

 

The Austrian Society for Contemporary Music (OEGZM) has recently launched a call for works, seeking electro-acoustic compositions with or without additional instruments. The call is open to composers of all nationalities and ages. All required information (in English) about the Call including guidelines and deadline can be also found on OEGZM website here

 

UNAC put in place a Regions Committee to support local composers

 

France is a large country made up of very diverse territories. One of UNAC’s missions is to inform French songwriters wherever they are. That’s why they created a Regions Committee, through which they set up actions in the 15 French regions to reach the local public of composers in demand for information about their status, their rights and so on.

On 9 November, a delegation made up of representatives of UNAC, UPAD (Professional Union of Dubbing Authors) and CSDEM (Union Chamber of Music Publishers) traveled to Cébazat in Auvergne-Rhône -Alpes to organize a professional day. During this day backed by the festival “Semaphore En Chansons”, we gathered a panel of speakers from the local music sector (DRAC, Sacem regional delegation, SMAC venues etc.) so that the local authors  meet the right interlocutors and find the good resources essential to an author’s career.

Photo credit: Chloé Liorzou

Photo: Frédéric Kocourek, vice president of UNAC, Vanessa Bertran, president of UPAD, Olivier Delevingne, president of UNAC, Maxime Jacquart, publisher and CSDEM representative, and Philippe Manivet, publisher and CSDEM representative.

 

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About ECSA:

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 30,000 professional composers and songwriters in 26 European countries. With 54 member organisations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

www.composeralliance.org

For the News from Brussels in pdf format, please click here

 

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Authors’ Group comments ahead of the Council IP Working Group – 30 November 2018

 

Dear Member of the IP Working Group,

Ahead of the upcoming IP Working Party meeting on November 30, the Authors’ Group would like to call your immediate attention to several aspects of the compromise solution on the proposed Copyright Directive Chapter 3 “Fair remuneration in contracts of authors and performers”, which are of critical importance to the EU creative community.


The Authors’ Group is Europe’s leading Authors’ network representing more than 500 000 authors, including writers, literary translators, composers, songwriters, journalists, photographers, film/TV directors and screenwriters in Europe. The Authors’ Group consists of the following associations: European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA), European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), European Writers’ Council (EWC), Federation of European Film and TV Directors (FERA) and Federation of Screenwriters in Europe (FSE).

The Copyright Directive represents a once in a decade opportunity to improve the situation of authors, thereby strengthening the European creative community and our cultural wealth in the digital era. Chapter 3 of the proposed Copyright Directive lays out provisions aiming at fixing the systemic weak bargaining power of authors and performers when negotiating their contracts, including their duration. It is a key element of the political agreement struck within the European Parliament in adopting its position on September 12. Authors’ contractual counterparts are in a systemic dominant position over freelance individuals which are grossly underpaid for their work and can barely sustain a living as freelancers with an irregular workflow, despite a strong regulatory environment supporting the business activities of Creative and Cultural Industries.

Article 15 – Contract adjustment mechanism
The necessity to allow for the representation of individual authors by representative organizations in implementing the contract adjustment mechanism stems from the risk of blacklisting and potential negative impact on their careers when using it in individual contracts.


In practice, a representative organisation would only act on behalf of their members on the basis of a mandate in such a claim procedure. We welcome a clarification of this point in article 15 para 1.

Article minus 14 – Principle of fair and proportionate remuneration

Directive 2001/29/EC recital 10 states that “If authors or performers are to continue their creative and artistic work, they have to receive an appropriate reward for the use of their work”. The notion of “appropriate reward” has not brought any improvement to the situation of authors due to their systemic lack of bargaining power.


We refute the idea that Cultural Creative Industries’ business models require “safe harbour rules” or “blanket licenses” in negotiating authors’ remuneration, and that the notion of proportionate remuneration hinders their legal security and business planning. Authors’ remuneration is not an adjustment variable for the CCIs business model, but an investment in the creativity from which stems the very value of the copyright licensing system.


Proportionate remuneration brings stability to unstable creative careers by (i) allowing authors to invest in the development of future project before a new contract is signed, and (ii) compensating for their lack of social benefits (unemployment, pensions, health care). The introduction of the notion of“proportionate remuneration is necessary, due to the ineffectiveness of Directive 2001/29/EC “appropriate reward” approach.


Authors’ fair and proportionate remuneration should be understood as sharing in the economic success of their works, by taking into account the potential and actual economic value of the rights transferred/licensed by authors to their contractual counterparts.


The implementation of the principle of proportionate remuneration cannot be considered only through individual contracts, as proportionate remuneration is ensured through different existing mechanisms in various Member States, including collective bargaining, collective management, statutory right remuneration. 

Article 16a) Mechanism for the revocation of rights


Authors have very little room to maneuver when signing their contracts but have one obvious legitimate expectation: their works should be exploited. If this is not the case, this results in a lose-lose situation for creators, citizens’ access to cultural diversity and fair competition.


The European Parliament rightly supported such a mechanism for the revocation of rights to ensure that author’s works are exploited and made available to the public, in line with many EU Member States legislations. There is no legitimate business explanation that can justify that authors’ hands are tied when their works are not exploited. There is no legitimate reason either to believe that such a mechanism would prevent the exploitation of creative works, simply because it would only apply in case of a lack of exploitation.


Copyright contracts are often concluded for the entire duration of the copyright term, even though the duration of authors’ rights (70 years after the death of the author) and the duration of transfer (contracts between authors and publishers/producers/broadcasters/etc) are two entirely different concepts. Such a very long duration of transfer prevents authors from taking into account the different and dynamic modes of exploitation and grant their rights to the most efficient contractual counterparts, encouraging fair competition amongst them. It also encourages some unfair business practices that consist in acquiring multiple works for ages to get a stronger and consolidated position in the market without actually exploiting them and giving them the possibility to find their public.


• Excluding from the scope of this mechanism works that “contain contributions of a plurality of authors” would simply be an empty and ineffective promise, since most copyright works contain a plurality of authors. Both the texts of the European Parliament and the compromise put forward by the European Commission already provide sufficient flexibility to Member States to take into account the specificities of different sectors and deal with the question of joint ownership in a flexible and efficient way, in line with the principle of subsidiarity. Such a “use it or lose it” clause for performers has been implemented by Member States (as per the Term Extension Directive) and the national solutions found have all preserved the notion that collaborative works need a collaboration of creative contributors to exercise this right. There is no reason to believe that the future implementation of such a provision would lead to a different result.


Such an exclusion would also prevent the exercise of this right for a specific contribution if the final work is not even finally made (for a scenario, an article in a book, a music sheet, etc.). This means that a contributive author would not be able to invoke this right to grant his work to another contractual counterpart if the first one does not even start to exploit the full work, leaving millions of works unknown to the public.


As a result, we strongly oppose the exclusion of “works or subject matter from the application of the mechanism if such works or subject matter usually contain contributions of a plurality of authors or performers” and we urge you to reject it, to the benefit of authors, fair competition and cultural
diversity.

Sincerely yours,

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 50,000 professional composers and songwriters in 27 European countries. With 56 member organizations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.
Web:
www.composeralliance.org
EU Transparency Register ID: 71423433087-91
The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is the largest organization of journalists in Europe, representing over 320.000 journalists in 61 journalists’ organizations across 40 countries. The EFJ fights for social and professional rights of journalists working in all sectors of the media through strong trade unions. It strives to maintain or create environments in which quality, journalistic independence, pluralism, public service values and decent work in the media exist.
Web:
www.europeanjournalists.org
EU Transparency Register ID: 27471236588-39
EWC, founded in 1977 in Germany and newly constituted in 2006 in Brussels as an international non-profit organisation, the European Writers’ Council is the federation of 45 European national organisations of professional writers and literary translators in all genres in 34 countries. EWC’s members represent more than 160,000 authors in the book sector.
Web: www.europeanwriterscouncil.eu
EU Transparency Register ID: 56788289570-24
The Federation of European Film Directors (FERA), founded in 1980, represents film and TV directors at European level, with 35 directors’ associations as members from 29 countries. We speak for more than 20,000 European screen directors, representing their cultural, creative and economic interests.
Web:
www.filmdirectors.eu
EU Transparency Register ID: 29280842236-21
The Federation of Screenwriters Europe is a network of national and regional associations, guilds and unions of writers for the screen in Europe, created in June 2001. It comprises 25 organisations from 19 countries, representing more than 7,000 screenwriters in Europe.

Web: www.scenaristes.org
EU Transparency Register ID: 642670217507-74

 

You can download the PDF version here.

The right of revocation in the Copyright Directive: A key “use it or lose it” principle to the benefit of creators, fair competition and cultural diversity

 

21 November 2018

Dear Permanent Representative, Dear Member of the IP Working Group,

In view of the next COREPER meeting on the Copyright Directive, we – the European Writers’ Council and the European Composer and Songwriter Alliance, representing more than 200.000 authors across the EU – would like to express our strong support for the right of revocation/rights reversion mechanism (Article 16a) and recall its key added value for authors and the dissemination of our cultural heritage.

Fundamentally, copyright and authors rights have a two-fold objective: stimulate and encourage creativity while ensuring citizens’ access to culture. Those two objectives support each other: we want consumers to access and enjoy our works as much as possible.

When we sign a contract for the exploitation of our works, we have one obvious and legitimate expectation: our works should be exploited and made available to the public by our contractual counterparts. If this is not the case, this results in a lose-lose situation for creators, citizens’ access to cultural diversity and fair competition. There is no legitimate business explanation that can justify that our hands are tied when our works are suffering from a lack of exploitation.

While we regret that the Council has shown no support for a mandatory rights reversion mechanism in the case of lack of reporting, we urge you to:

1) Support such a mechanism in case of “a lack of exploitation” (instead of “absence of exploitation”) so that it is compliant with national laws already providing such a right.

2) Allow Member States (“may”) to take into account the lack of reporting obligations to establish such a lack of exploitation. In practice, authors should at least be able to rely on the non-compliance of reporting obligations to establish a lack of exploitation.

By supporting this simple “use it or lose it” mechanism that can allow us to get back our rights on our works if those are not exploited, you have now the power to promote a win-win situation for:

1) Authors – by preventing that our hands are tied (often for decades) if our works suffer from a lack of exploitation.

2) Consumers, and fair competition: if our contractual counterparts are not properly exploiting our works, we would have the possibility to transfer our works to another licensee, thus promoting a fair competition between our contractual counterparts.

3) Cultural diversity, since it would “unlock” works that are not exploited. At a time when we celebrate the European Year of Cultural Heritage, such a right would greatly contribute to make sure that unexploited works (especially niche and regional music, literature and audio-visual works) could be exploited again and become widely available.

In addition, the rights reversion mechanism/right of revocation is:

– The result of an overwhelming and cross political support in the European Parliament.

– Already established in various forms in many EU Member States and in the US (right of termination).

Supported by the Author’s Group, which represents all authors (Journalists, Film Directors, Screenwriters, Writers, Composers and Songwriters) in various sectors.

– Provided for performers in the “Term Directive” (2011/77/EU).

– Recommended by the EP JURI Study “Contractual arrangement applicable to
Creators”.

Ultimately, all citizens have an interest in promoting this right which benefits the whole society. We therefore urge you to integrate Article 16A) into the final Directive and thus provide the key to unlock access to millions of unexploited works, that form part of our common immense cultural heritage across the EU.

Sincerely yours,

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 50,000 professional composers and songwriters in 27 European countries. With 56 member organizations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

Web: www.composeralliance.org

EU Transparency Register ID: 71423433087-91

 

EWC, founded in 1977 in Germany and newly constituted in 2006 in Brussels as an international non-profit organisation, the European Writers’ Council is the federation of 45 European national organisations of professional writers and literary translators in all genres in 34 countries. EWC’s members represent more than 160,000 authors in the book sector.

Web: www.europeanwriterscouncil.eu

EU Transparency Register ID: 56788289570-24

 

You can find the PDF version of this letter here.

News from Brussels – October 2018

ECSA welcomes the Screen Composers Guild of Ireland as a new ECSA Member

The Screen Composers Guild of Ireland (SCGI) has recently joined the ECSA network as its 57th member organisation. SCGI is the newly established representative body for professional Irish and Irish based composers who provide original music for the use in film, TV, animation, video games and advertising content. SCGI aims to promote and make visible the work of creators in this area, to promote the contribution and value of music as a creative element and to improve the status and rights of composers working to deliver music to the audiovisual sector.

Bringing together a wealth of experience and talent in its membership, SCGI offers an opportunity for screen composers to contribute to the development and growth of their own sector both nationally and internationally, and to contribute to the ambition to grow the audiovisual industry in Ireland and deliver a global reputation for excellence in media production.

SCGI will join ECSA’s FFACE committee, contributing to the international conversation on protecting and promoting our creative industries and the creators who form them. ECSA is delighted to welcome the SCGI amongst its Members and is convinced that, in its new position, SCGI will further strengthen the voice of ECSA, to the benefit of all music authors in Europe and beyond.

 

Camille Awards 2018

The 2018 edition of the Camille Awards was held on the 20th of October in the framework of the International Sound & Film Music Festival (ISFMF) in Pula (Croatia) and was able, once again, to honour the greatest achievements of European composers of pieces of film and audio-visual music, and to expand awareness among the audience, composers and filmmakers on the importance and the power of film music soundtracks. The event brought together more than 250 participants from all over Europe.

At the ceremony, celebrating both exceptional musical talent and cultural diversity, the following composers were awarded:

Best Electro-acoustic Score:

Ola Fløttum (Norway) for “Thelma”

Best Original Music for a Series:

Lorne Balfe & Rupert Gregson-Williams (United Kingdom) for “The Crown”- Season 2

Best Orchestral Score:

Dario Marianelli (United Kingdom) for “Paddington 2”

A heartfelt THANK YOU to those of you who were able to participate and a warm invite to the rest of you to come to our next edition!

Photo credits: ISFMF

 

EU AFFAIRS UPDATE

Ongoing negotiations on the Copyright Directive: Make your voice heard!

Following the successful European Parliament’s vote on 12 September 2018, the three main EU institutions (European Parliament, European Commission and the Council) started to meet and negotiate (“trilogues meetings”) the Copyright Directive, with a view to agree on a final text by the end of the year/beginning of next year. The EP position, which contains positive provisions on Chapter 3 (Fair remuneration for authors and performers) and on the “Value Gap” (Article 13), is generally the most favourable to music authors. November will be a crucial month since the negotiations will intensify with a specific focus on the provisions on fair remuneration for authors and performers (Chapter 3). Therefore, ECSA asks all composers and songwriters to continue to reach out to Members of the European Parliament and Members States (with the documents mentioned below) so that this Directive can finally bring concrete improvements to music authors. It is time to make your voice heard again!

ECSA finalised its position and sent it to all relevant policy makers on 15 October (see here). With all its members (Federation of European Film Directors, Federation of European Screenwriters, European Writers Council, and the European Federation of Journalists), we also finalised the Authors Group’s position, which was sent to all policy makers on 23 October. Last but not least, together with the European Writers Council, we sent a letter which specifically addresses the need to introduce a right of revocation into the final agreement. Once an informal agreement is reached in those “trilogue meetings”, both the European Parliament (Plenary vote) and the Council will have to formally approve the agreement before it can finally enter into force.

 

ECSA Position Paper on the next Creative Europe Program (2021-2027)

In May 2017, the European Commission adopted its Proposal for the next Creative Europe Program (2021-2027), which will now need to be approved by both the European Parliament and the Council. In a nutshell, Creative Europe is the regulation that provides financial support to a wide range of cultural activities in various sectors across the EU and includes three strands (MEDIA Strand for 

the audiovisual sector, Culture Strand for other cultural sectors – including music, and the Cross Border Strand). In terms of budget, the Proposal – and in parallel in the Multi-Financial Framework (the general EU budget), includes a budget of 1, 85 billion euros for the whole Program with more than 1 billion for the MEDIA Strand, 609 million for the Culture Strand and 160 million for the Cross sectoral strand. In terms of content, the Proposal helpfully mentions some good provisions for ECSA members, such as “training actions and audience development for European repertoire” and “mobility of artists and cultural and creative operators” but could also include other important aspects for ECSA Members (such as moral rights/credits and diversity of repertoires for example).

The goal of the ECSA position paper is to influence the forthcoming discussions in the European Parliament and in the Council on both the budget and content of the Proposal. It includes the following 6 points i) show the European Union’s commitment to culture by doubling the budget of the Creative Europe Programme ii) increase the budget dedicated specifically to the Culture Strand iii) dedicate a stronger budget to the European music sector as one of the priorities of the Creative Europe Programme iv) strengthen the protection of authors’ rights, artistic freedom and the promotion of moral rights, v) facilitate the mobility of authors and diverse repertoires vi) enhance the professionalisation of authors and contribute to a more balanced gender participation in the music sector.

The report drafted by Mrs. Costa (S&D / IT – rapporteur on the Creative Europe regulation (published very recently – see here), is rather positive on certain aspects as it proposes a sharp increase of the Creative Europe general budget (from 1.85 to 2.8 billion euros), a 2% increase of the Culture Strand, and tends to focus on artistic expression and creation. It will be discussed and amended in the coming weeks, with an adoption by the CULT Committee foreseen around February 2019.

 

ECSA named member of the Advisory Board on the study on “Music Moves Europe”: funding for the music sector

Together with other stakeholders, ECSA will be participating to the advisory board for 1) a feasibility study on the establishment of a European Music Observatory and 2) an analysis of market trends and gaps in funding needs for the music sector. The feasibility study will investigate a possible future full-scale establishment of a data collection organisation, called ‘the Observatory’ as a core strategic resource to drive relevance and value for future policy actions in the music portfolio and across the sector. As for the second study, its objective is to develop a better understanding of the analysis of market trends and funding schemes in Europe in order to address more effectively the so-called funding gap for the European music sector.

 

MEMBERS NEWS

2018 Paris MaMA Festival & Convention

UNAC administrators got invited as speakers during the MaMA Convention in Paris (the Parisian music industry fair). On the 19th October, UNAC gave a masterclass at MaMA Festival & Convention in Paris, about « 30 Ways To Make A Living With Music ». Olivier Delevingne and Wally Badarou lead the conference in front of a packed room. Guests like Marie Nowak (BMG France), Suzanne Combo (GAM) and the artist Cerrone, were invited to share their experience. Earlier that day, Frédéric Kocourek, vice-president of UNAC, participated to a debate on the topic of professional training for authors and composers.

Photo credits: UNAC

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About ECSA:

The European Composer and Songwriter Alliance (ECSA) represents over 30,000 professional composers and songwriters in 26 European countries. With 54 member organisations across Europe, the Alliance speaks for the interests of music creators of art & classical music (contemporary), film & audiovisual music, as well as popular music.

www.composeralliance.org

For the News from Brussels in pdf format, please click here

 

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