12/07/2006

Music Industry wants to "tax" distribution channels

AIM and various other music bodies held a press conference to introduce their new concept of "A value recognition right". Their view is that content is adding value to distribution channels like broadband, mobile phones, even Bluetooth and because it's adding value it should be licensable.

Arguments included that 60% of Internet traffic is Peer to Peer (initially they stated music P2P, but changed that to general P2P including services like Skype). People choose broadband because of music P2P, therefore they can license ISPs as part of the value add content chain.

Is it not the other way around, most people get broadband then find P2P easy to use, so use it?

Copy Levy (the relevent law) is really based on analogue and doesn't fit into the digital world, so they want to change the law so digital means charge the distribution players, not the consumer.

That's got to have something to do with the very bad press the music industry has got from suing private individuals, it's much easier to sue the broadband providers who are nasty big corporates and who cares about them? Except margins are so low in the broadband industry that having to pay music royalties etc may well criple the providers which will stifle an industry killing it instead of allowing it to grow and providing the digital economy that the government wants.

The industry are adament it's not a "stealth tax" - which of course it isn't, or maybe it is?
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