Government urges fight against ‘horrific returns’ for musicians | Music

A new parliamentary report has called on the British government to streamline policymaking in the creative industries, in order to make the country’s music ecosystem more friendly to British musicians.

The report was authored by a committee that scrutinizes the spending, policies and management of the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), and follows 2021 Music Streaming Report And the state of the industry that was instigated An investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority On the power and role of streaming services. This report praises the government’s efforts to take action – such as commissioning an investigation from the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) and setting up technical stakeholder working groups – but says more action is needed in order to support artists more effectively.

Acting Chairman of the DCMS Committee, Damien GreenHe said that “the government needs to ensure that it is ahead of the game by taking on a more strategic role in coordinating policies across departments.”.

The report says the government’s current approach is “too scattered to be effective, especially compared to other successful countries with which we compete for market share,” including Canada and South Korea.

He points to the fact that government responsibilities in relation to the music industry are spread across multiple departments, meaning that some issues, such as those around post-Brexit EU creative industry visas, remain unresolved. These issues can be addressed, the report says, “by defining the overall direction more regularly by publishing its general strategy…with tangible and measurable results, at more regular intervals, so that the work of different departments and remote agencies can work at a later time.” for implementation.”

While the report broadly welcomes the government’s action on the 2021 DCMS Commission Flow Report, it questions the practices of the formed working groups, which address transparency and metadata. “We have heard that working groups have missed their deadlines and that promised concrete public results have not yet been achieved,” the report reads. “We also heard that the working groups, although one was on transparency, had very little in place on the same transparency and accountability mechanisms.”

It also suggests that although the IPO has commissioned reports on bonuses and rights, “there may be no concrete action” on the reports due to the lack of working groups on those topics.

The report’s recommendation on government participation and IPOs notes that “IPOs, at a minimum, ensure that there is greater transparency about groups by ensuring that their membership, agendas and deadlines are made public, that groups have reporting functions,” and that “ministers and departmental officials will take a more active role in groups when appropriate.” The report also recommends the creation of working groups on remuneration and performers’ rights.

In a statement, a DCMS spokesperson said: “We are committed to ensuring that musicians and songwriters receive fair pay for their work. We are exploring issues around artist pay as part of our music broadcast work program and are currently looking at the contents of this report. It is important that any solutions work with the industry.” and deliver meaningful and long-term benefits to all.”

Green said that “there is still a lot to be done to ensure the talent behind the music is adequately rewarded”.

“As the committee heard, there continues to be frustration about the royalties of the vast majority of musicians and songwriters,” he said. “Many of them are receiving miserable returns despite making hit music. The core players need to come together to address this in a sustainable way.”

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