[LINK] music industry goes after public performance

Karl Auer kauer at biplane.com.au
Mon Jun 15 17:26:08 EST 2009

On Mon, 2009-06-15 at 14:46 +1000, Chris Gilbey wrote:
> If you are a songwriter and you want to get paid performance income for your
> works you join APRA.

Er - no. APRA can only help you if your works are played by radio
stations, restaurants etc. Then, you can either go to those
organisations yourself and demand payment or join APRA and have a Big
Guy do it for you.

The other way to get paid performance income is to do paid performances!
Or produce your own CD and sell it, rent it or whatever. APRA just isn't
in the picture.
> So if you want to get paid as a songwriter, you gotta join the union.

No again. I can sell my songs to others, rent the rights tpo perform to
others, and I can perform myself. APRA again does not have to be part of
that picture.

> If you own a venue and you want to play music in it, you have to have a
> license. End of story.

Really? Is it that absolute? Let's say I own a restaurant. I have a
talented acquaintances who have formed a band. They play all their own
material, and have cut their own CDs. I have a contract with them, and
pay them some money to use their CDs in my restaurant. I play only their
works. Are you saying that in that case I have to have a license from
APRA (or whoever)?

> And an artists playing his or her own songs still has the performance of the
> songs collected by APRA. This is to stop equally rapacious club owners and
> café proprietors (to those rapacious record companies and publishers :))
> from diddling the songwriter/artist/performer.

This needs more explanation. You seem to be saying that a venue is not
permitted to enter a private contract with a songwriter/performer. Is
that what you *are* saying?

> So the answer is that no writer would be able to, or would have reason to
> withhold the right to collect revenues for their songs.

If you are not getting airplay, your APRA fees are a waste of money. If
you only play live, your APRA fees are a waste of money. If you want to
build your own niche market, your APRA fees are a waste of money. Or
have I missed something?

>  So the hypothetical
> café that contracts with a local band to provide canned music would have to
> pay twice. Pay the band and pay APRA.

I wonder if that would hold up in court if push came to shove. It sounds
a lot like mandatory unionism, with very few of the benefits (APRA
doesn't guarantee you anything but payment *if* your stuff gets played).

Regards, K.

Karl Auer (kauer at biplane.com.au)                   +61-2-64957160 (h)
http://www.biplane.com.au/~kauer/                  +61-428-957160 (mob)

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