@musicbizworld: BMG RESPONDS TO ARTIST STREAMING REVOLT IN GERMANY: ‘IT IS TIME FOR RECORD COMPANIES TO CHANGE.’

[Editor Charlie sez:  Rather than rearranging the deck chairs, we think there are two separate issues with streaming rates.  First and most important services need to exercise pricing power to increase the revenue pie or stop asking artists and songwriters to fund and invest in their growth strategy without getting stock or upside.  Second, the method of allocating streaming royalties could change so that you don’t hear fans saying “Sick of my money funding crap.”  Chris Castle’s “Ethical Pool” approach in the influential post “Arithmetic on the Internet” is an interesting interim step that allows both artists and fans to opt in to an allocation based on usage not market share.  If that’s not fixed, it’s just rearranging the deck chairs and artist need to be careful they’re not being used by services.]

As MBW reported Friday (January 24), a group of managers and lawyers representing some of Germany’s biggest artists have written a joint letter to the leaders of the four largest music rights companies in the market – Universal, Sony, Warner and BMG.

The agenda of the letter, undersigned by representatives of 14 artists, “becomes clear very quickly”, according to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper (F.A.Z), which published a more detailed story on the matter today (January 26) on the front page of its business section. Translated, F.A.Z says that the artist reps are demanding “more money from the booming business [created by] music streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music”.

What’s also clear from the letter, according to F.A.Z: unlike prior artist protests against streaming, the letter does not direct its ire towards digital platforms, but instead “attacks record companies” and is “of the opinion that [the majors] are taking too much of the streaming millions”.

Read the post on Music Business Worldwide

@jameshanley5: ‘It’s a better way’: Deezer unveils User Centric Payment System ambitions #irespectmusic

[Deezer is getting out ahead of the growing backlash against streaming service royalties with a blog post on the company’s site entitled “Deezer wants artists to be paid fairly.”  Deezer  becomes the first platform to commit to implementing a User Centric system (can we please not start calling it “UCPS”).  I’ll be interested to see their proposal in action.  Deezer does seem to have grasped the core issue of User Centric, whether it’s based on the ethical pool concept or otherwise:  There is no reason for the vast numerical majority of artists to stay in a system that results in fans paying for music they don’t listen to and an ever declining payout for those who are in it.  In the cold light of dawn, the science is in and the artists are out.

Streaming “Catalog” is any release older than 18 months–I cannot tell you how insane that is, but that is a topic for another day.  When you consider that “catalog” makes up a substantial majority of streams, it compounds the need for user centric royalty distribution instead of the current crisis.

Catalog Chart

And if songwriters were given a chance to abandon their legacy revenue share structure that they will be stuck with for years to come in favor of a penny rate as Apple proposed in the CRB Phonorecords III, they’d probably do it, too.]

[Deezer] CEO Alexis De Gemini said Deezer’s market-leading position in its home country had inspired the shift.

“We’re now a very important financier of the creation of music in France,” he said. “The streaming industry right now, through its paying system, generates more revenues towards specific genres loved by younger users, to the point that… important genres for people above 35 and 40 have their artists making less money than expected in the previous world, where each CD was sold, and the money was going artist by artist.

“We have started to take that mission to try and change the way the money is reallocated. It doesn’t have any impact on Deezer turnover in France, nor globally. But we believe it has an impact in the way we impact creativity, hence, the music we will bring to our users in the future.

“Just in France, UCPS is going to have the top streaming artists make, maybe, 10% less revenues. And on the other side, those who are making very weak revenues are going to be maybe making 30% more. We believe that this readjustment, which is tiny, can help a lot of artists who today are not getting any dime from the streaming business.”

Read the post on Music Week.

 

@Eamonn_Forde: SACEM BOSS TALKS YOUTUBE, BLOCKCHAIN AND USER-CENTRIC STREAMING ROYALTIES

[Editor Charlie sez:  No database helps services that don’t use it–like Spotify.]

….Systems of this kind can’t help to revive memories of the doomed Global Repertoire Database (GRD) project, an attempted collaboration between SACEM and fellow collecting societies ASCAP, SOCAN, PRS for Music, SIEA and SGAE. It fell apart in 2014 after £8m of investment.

Why did it fail? “There were many reasons,” [Jean-Noël Tronc, CEO of French authors’ rights society SACEM] says, citing the involvement of too many cooks as one of them.

“Another reason was the technological choices being made –  where we were creating a unique centralised database –  was just not the proper way to address the issue,” he continues.

“Documentation is, by definition, dynamic. Every minute thousands of new works are being created every day. That is across tens of thousands of different databases. Some relate to publishers, some relate to CMOs; and so the idea that we could create a unique and centralised database with the project whose budget was tens of millions of dollars was maybe too ambitious a vision. And maybe not from a technology point of view tackling the issue from the right angle.”

Read the post on Music Ally