From the American Association of Indepdent Music (A2IM).
On Thursday July 26th Congress’ House Judiciary Sub-Committee on the Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet held a hearing on “Innovation in America: The Role of Copyrights.” A2IM board member Tor Hansen (YepRoc/Redeye) visited Capitol Hill to testify on behalf of both the company he and Glenn Dicker founded and the overall A2IM Independent Music Label community. Tor’s written testimony and a video of the hearing is here with Tor’s opening remarks starting at 52:54 of the hearing video.
In his written comments Tor highlights many of the issues facing our community. Tor’s comments included:
- The fact that the access to fans benefits of the Internet for independents are being somewhat offset by unpaid acquisition and the resulting need for both voluntary ISP and government assistance to solve the problem.
- The need for royalty rate parity for all copyrights, as the value of a song should not be determined by which music label created or owns a song as all copyrights are created equally.
- The need for government support of an AM/FM sound recording royalty for over-the-air radio play, which would also ensure international trade reciprocity for the overseas radio performance royalties that U.S. labels and artists generate but do not currently receive from overseas.
- The need to support of U.S. Intellectual Property commerce overseas to improve our U.S. sector.
Tor, in his testimony and in answers to numerous questions from the Congressmen on the committee, painted a picture of how small to medium sized businesses that invest in the creation of musical intellectual property help spur/grow art, innovation and our economy, thus improving the U.S. balance of trade and creating jobs, but that we need support as in our music industry making a living is tough. Tor noted that the Internet and new technology has been a huge benefit to small and medium sized music label businesses like ours but that the continued protection and monetization of copyrights is essential to continue to fuel the continuing copyright creation process!