GEMA/YouTube talks hit another wall
By Chris Cooke | Published on Tuesday 15 January 2013
German publishing rights collecting society GEMA doesn’t seem any closer to reaching a licensing deal with YouTube, a long running stand off that has hindered the distribution of music content on the popular video platform in Germany.
Despite various past public spats, talks between GEMA and YouTube were ongoing for much of 2012, but earlier this month the collecting society broke off negotiations, and now plans to take the case to an arbitration body. And in the latest stage of the dispute, it isn’t just a disagreement on what constitutes fair royalty rates that is the issue.
GEMA, which is expected to now push for damages in relation to a thousand songs that have presumably appeared on German YouTube without licence, is also kicking up about the wording that the Google-owned service employs when telling users why music videos are not available on the service, which seemingly represents the collecting society as being stubborn bastards.
Though you usually sense that Team GEMA actually quite like having that reputation in music publishing circles – though ‘stubborn’ for the good of German songwriters everywhere, I’m sure they’d add.