I got an email from the ppl this morning about the UK Govt Refusing to Back Legislation for Musicians, it goes as follows –
Do performers deserve copyright on a par with other creators? We think so. So does the European Commission. So does the French government. So does the German government. But the UK government is not supporting the legislation to put this right.
The copyright term for performers is limited to 50 years after release, about half the length of copyright enjoyed by other creators. The draft Directive on the term of protection of copyright and related rights proposes increasing this to 95 years, on a par with the USA and closer to the life plus 70 years enjoyed by composers, authors, photographers and other artists.
Yet, the UK government is not backing this Directive. Despite having the biggest music industry in Europe, the UK government is not supporting its own musicians.
The draft Directive is currently being debated in the European Council of Ministers, attended by John Denham, Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills. There is still time to persuade him. But we will need to act fast.
If you feel strongly about this, please write to your local MP. Tell them how unfair it is that you as a performer get a much shorter copyright term than other creators. Tell them how important these royalties are to you. Tell them what you think about getting support from the European Commission, from the French government, from the German government, but not from your own UK government. Tell them it is time for the UK government to put their warm words about the creative industries into positive action by backing this legislation.
To find your local MP, go to this website www.locata.co.uk/commons. If you want any help with the letter or email to your local MP, please feel free to contact my colleague Dominic McGonigal at email@example.com.
Finally, thank you, on behalf of thousands of other musicians, now and in the future. Your voice persuaded Commissioner Charlie McCreevy to back us. We can do it again.