STEERING GROUP AND OFFICE SET UP TO WORK ON HOOPER'S COPYRIGHT HUB
Hooper's paper, called 'Copyright Works', was written following Ian Hargreaves' government-instigated review of the British copyright system, and specifically focused on that review's recommendation that some kind of digital copyright exchange be established, making it easier for licensees to identify and contact the owners of copyrights they may wish to license.
The industry-led Copyright Licensing Steering Group will look into how that exchange, or 'copyright hub' to use Hooper's term, can be established, as well considering other issues around making the licensing system easier to navigate. The Group will be chaired by James Lancaster, former Head of Rights And Business Affairs at the BBC, who told CMU: "I am delighted to be chairing this important group which will play a significant role in making it easier for rights and works to be licensed for the benefit of all".
Meanwhile, Hooper himself will chair a sub-committee called the Copyright Hub Launch Group specifically focused on the exchange idea, while the co-author of Hooper's report, Ros Lynch, will oversee the day-to-day operations of the Steering Group on secondment from the government's Department For Business, Innovation And Skills at an industry-funded office, based at the London HQ of Financial Times publisher Pearson.
It's not 100% certain how much the CLSG and its accompanying office will cost to run, though it's thought that those costs will be met by the initiative's industry partners, in line with Hooper's recommendations. From the music industry side, it is collecting society PRS For Music which seems most proactively involved.
PRS boss Robert Ashcroft told CMU: "We join with others across the industry in welcoming the announcement today that James Lancaster, former Head of Rights And Business Affairs at the BBC, will chair the Copyright Licensing Steering Group and that Ros Lynch will be leading an office to spearhead the work to deliver Richard Hooper's Copyright Works recommendations".
He added: "We will continue, with our partners in the industry, to meet the challenges he identified, providing a better licensing environment for all. As previously stated, we believe that the Copyright Hub recommended by Hooper could place Britain at the very centre of the global, online market for the creative industries. Coupled with industry efforts for a Global Repertoire Database, it will prove to be a critical building block in what must inevitably be an international project".
TWO MEN ACQUITTED OF CAUSING EARLY ELO MEMBER'S DEATH
As previously reported, Edwards was killed after his van was crushed by a bale of hay as he drove down the A381 in Devon in September 2010. The 600 kilo hay bale had been left on sloping ground in a nearby field by farmers Brian Burden and Russell Williams but came loose and rolled onto the road, hitting the musician's vehicle and killing him instantly.
Edwards' death had already been ruled accidental by at an inquest in 2011, but Burden and Williams were charged with offenses under health and safety legislation, reports The Guardian. However, they were found to have assessed the risk of leaving the bale unattended adequately.
DEATH GRIPS COMMENT ON "PURPOSEFULLY" BEING DROPPED BY SONY
Speaking to Pitchfork, drummer Zach Hill said: "A lot of things have to be determined that aren't that interesting - figuring out how we're going to [move forward]. And whether we're going to do that ourselves, or who's going to do that with us, based on our actions of purposefully trying to get out of the record deal we're exiting right now".
I only said they'd passed comment, I didn't say it made any sense. Watch the whole interview here.
KE$HA "DYING" TO DO KEITH RICHARDS DUET
Anyway. Says Ke$ha to Bang! Showbiz: "Keith Richards is the end-all and be-all for me. I'm gonna keep trying to work with him until the day I die probably".
Keith Richards is still to comment.
MAZES' JACK COOPER MAKING 24 HOUR LP
This new mini-initiative follows Cooper's 2011 'Art Is Cheap' scheme, whereby he composed original tracks to order for anyone who asked, and had £10.
He says: "I've been reading a lot recently about sleep and its five stages so the music I intend to make will reflect those... music that you could perhaps listen to whilst asleep or at least on the verge. It'll be mainly improvised, based around drones and loops".
As the day goes on, audio and video previews of what Jack's doing will be appearing in real-time via capeclear.tumblr.com, so go have a look.
LIL B'S CAT RELEASES SINGLE
The rapper's also upper-cased blurb for the track runs thus: "PRODUCED BY LIL B! THIS IS AMAZIING!!! HOW WAS THIS DONE? KEKE THE ADOPTED TABBY CAT, SOME CALL HER KEKE THE BASED CAT, HAS MADE HISTORY! WITH HER PROUD FRIEND LIL B, THEY BOTH ARE EXTREMLY HAPPY TO SPREAD LOVE WITH HUMANS AND ANIMALS TOGETHER".
It concludes: "KEKE HAS WAITED A LONG TIME AND SAID THERE IS MORE COMING SOON MAYBE, LET'S TAKE OUR TIME, TODAY IT'S THANK YOU BASEDGOD FIRST, THEN THANK YOU LIL B... NOW THANK YOU KEKE".
And now, this.
PISSED JEANS ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM
That's essentially it, bar what the album's attached tracklisting looks like:
And that first track 'Bathroom Laughter' is downloadable (its price, one email address) via this link.
LENNY KRAVITZ TO STAR IN MARVIN GAYE MOVIE
Apparently, the movie will be directed by Julien Temple, who's perhaps most famed for his non-fiction films about The Sex Pistols, Joe Strummer, and Ray Davies.
The Standard quotes Gaye's ex-wife Janis Hunter, whom he divorced three years prior to his death in 1984, as saying she's "very sceptical" about the biopic, unsurprisingly so given it looks set to commemorate a problematic and non-prolific time in Gaye's life, and subsequent fatal shooting by his own father.
ISLE OF WIGHT FESTIVAL SURVIVES LICENCE REVIEW
GKN's objections to the current licensing system for the IOW Festival followed the problems that occurred this year when bad weather caused problems for those trying to access the festival site by car, resulting in traffic tailbacks across the island's road system, and some festival-goers having to sleep in their cars, or even on ferries from which they were unable to disembark due to the jams. But the island's Festival Licence Review Committee did not back the calls for a new system, instead only making nominal changes to the event's current licence, mainly by requiring promoter John Giddings to make public an Event Safety, Operational & Traffic Management Plan.
Speaking at the hearing, Giddings said that he was willing to invest in improving the local infrastructure around his festival's site to avoid the problems that occurred this year should the event be hit by very wet weather again in the future. Plans were also revealed to charge for parking at future festivals, encouraging more ticket-buyers to get to the event by public transport.
However, he said that if the changes to his licence being proposed by GKN were introduced, it would not be financially viable for his company to pay for long-term infrastructure improvements, and might not be viable for him to stage a festival on the island at all, adding that an alternative site on the English mainland (away from the licensing committee's control, and not subject to the Isle Of Wight Act which adds extra licensing issues for events staged on the island) had already been identified. He concluded: "I'm willing to put my hand in my pocket, but if you don't want us to, just tell me and we'll go away".
Luckily for him, both the Committee and the Police said that they felt the licence was "fit for purpose" as it currently stood. The 2013 edition of the festival will take place from 13-16 Jun.
FESTIVAL LINE-UP ADDITIONS
EUROSONIC NOORDERSLAG, Groningen, The Netherlands, 9-12 Jan 2013: Andy Burrows, Ghostpoet, Rudimental, Kwes, His Clancyness, Bastille, Temples, Saint Lou Lou Baby Guru, Birth of Joy, Bologna Violenta, Case Mayfield, Cashmere Cat, Champs, Epic Rain, French Films , Grimus, HATEM, Holograms, Instrumenti, Kensington, Laura Mvula, Lescop, Liesa van der Aa, Linnea Olsson, Luke Sital-Singh, Man from the South, Molotov Jukebox, Nina Nesbitt, Pascal Pinon, The La La Lies, Sam A La Bamalot, En ZA!, AlascA, Blaudzun, Broken Brass Ensemble Pegasus, Eins Zwei & The Parallel Cinema, Janne Schra, Pipes And Pints, Raketkanon, Rebekka Karijord, Renée, Roosevelt, S O H N, Sea+Air, Stabil Elite, Tangarine, The Pussywarmers, Cirque Valentin, DeWolff, June Noa, Maison du Malheur, Mr Polska, Orgel Vreten, Posij, Re:Freshed Orchestra, Ronnie Flex, Qeaux Qeaux Joans, Tim Wes. eurosonic-noorderslag.nl/en/
ZEITGEIST AGENCY TAKES OVER READING AND LEEDS PR
Melvin Benn, boss of Reading and Leeds promoters Festival Republic, told CMU: "I was impressed with The Zeitgeist Agency's approach to the Reading and Leeds festivals' print and online campaigns and the ideas they suggested to reach new and existing areas of the media, whilst engaging with our audience. I feel they know the festival, the culture of the festival and the festival fans. I am looking forward to working closely with the team to ensure Reading and Leeds festivals remain the festival of choice for music lovers".
Meanwhile for Zeitgeist, Stockwood said: "Reading and Leeds are the ultimate festival experiences in the UK and the pinnacle of festival work for a company such as ours. We are delighted to have won the pitch against stiff competition and we look forward to a long and fruitful relationship with the Festival Republic in-house team. It's an exciting time for Reading and Leeds festivals and we are glad to be at the forefront of these campaigns in this our third year of trading".
The Zeitgeist co-founder added that with the Reading and Leeds Festivals both expanding next year, in terms of terms of number of stages and range of artists, he and his team were looking to broaden the range of titles which cover the events.
SALAAM REMI MADE SONY MUSIC'S EXECUTIVE VP OF A&R/PRODUCTION
SLUGABED STARTS LABEL
They say: "We like art and music so we are trying to do something with art and music that we like. Each record will come in a custom-designed sleeve. Also all our records have jokes on the back!"
Activia Benz's first release (in December) will be Belarussian beatsmith Deech's four-track 'Urnite' EP, 'snippetz' of which you can play now via SoundCloud.
RDIO PUTS VIDEO-BASED SISTER SERVICE INTO BETA
Also according to GigOM, while many expected Vdio to be a service akin to Netflix, so a video-based replica of Rdio where a monthly subscription would give you access to unlimited movies and TV shows, in fact the new platform will be more like the video-content strands of iTunes, ie consumers can either pay one fee to download a film or programme for keeps, or a lesser fee to have access to it for a set period of time.
NEW XBOX KARAOKE APP TO CHARGE BY THE HOUR
As previously reported, Sony recently announced that the latest incarnation of its 'SingStar' game on the PlayStation would be made available for free, with users instead paying to download individual tracks.
Now Microsoft has announced a new 'SingStar' rival for its Xbox console, simply called 'Karaoke', produced in conjunction with The Karaoke Channel. However, it will charge Xbox LIVE users by the hour to access the game's catalogue of over 8000 songs. This approach is fairly standard for real life karaoke bars, but whether users are willing to pay for limited access to singalong fun in their own homes remains to be seen. Packages will be available for two, six and 24 hours at a time, and there will be some tracks available for free to allow people to try it out before committing.
President and CEO of Karaoke Channel owner Stingray Digital Group Inc, Eric Boyko told reporters: "As the owner of the world's largest licensed karaoke library and karaoke service on TV and internet, The Karaoke Channel will combine its expertise with the advanced capabilities of the Xbox 360 platform from Microsoft to develop the best in-home karaoke experience ever. Now anyone can access our vast library and sing in a fun and interactive way right from their Xbox".
The model is not that dissimilar to UK-based karaoke brand Lucky Voice's online service. However, a service provided through Microsoft's Xbox LIVE service will undoubtedly have a much broader audience, though it's not yet clear if and when the new Xbox app will launch outside the US, or what sort of prices users will be charged.
NEW STREAMING SERVICE PLAYING WITH DONATIONS MODEL
Radical.fm launched last year as an online radio set-up, but has now added on-demand elements to its service, making it more of a direct competitor to the likes of Spotify. The platform is currently licensed by both majors and indies in its home territory, but non-Swedish users can also access some of the independent label content contained within the platform.
The big difference between Radical and other online streaming services is its business model. Everything is currently available for free, and without ads, but users are encouraged to donate money to help fund the operation. Founder Thomas McAlevey reckons that if every user donated about ten dollars a month - so Spotify's premium rate - then he'd have a business with long-term viability. The hope, though, is that some people will donate more than that, allowing those unable to pay to also enjoy the benefits of the platform.
The pay-what-you-want/donate-what-you-can model has been used by some individual artists for stand-alone releases, of course, and has successfully sustained many online communities in the tech (and file-sharing) domain.
McAlevey isn't the first to wonder whether a whole online music service, with its substantial liabilities to rights owners, could be funded this way, though he's possibly the first to try it out in such a prolific way. Though Grooveshark is also dabbling in the space by encouraging users to donate cash to individual acts through Flattr buttons on artist profiles, Flattr being another Swedish start-up (led by Pirate Bay co-founder Peter Sunde) that is wholly based around the idea of web services being funded by voluntary payments.
Doubters say that the idea of operating anything more than informal online clubs and societies this way is too idealistic, and that while start-ups might generate OK revenues through donations, as the entity becomes more established and corporate, users will become less willing to hand over cash voluntarily, making it a short-term solution rather than a long-term business plan.
But McAlevey seems hopeful thatsomething longer term can be created with the donations system. He told Billboard: "Radical believes everyone is entitled to enjoy great music, even the young and unemployed, so we don't force users to buy a subscription. Radical also believes radio is best experienced in an ad-free environment, and it is Radical's goal to provide all services free of advertising. But Radical relies on [user] support to continue".
FIONA APPLE CANCELS SHOWS TO BE WITH DOG
In a four-page hand-written letter posted on her website, Apple explained: "She [Janet] is my best friend and my mother and my daughter, my benefactor and she's the one who taught me what love is. I can't come to South America. Not now ... I will not be the woman who puts her career ahead of love and friendship".
So that's sad but nice. The dates will be rescheduled once the dog's dead.