Good and bad news: copyright law has been extended from 50 years to 70 years in the UK.
Joining the bandwagon of the USA, the copyright law in the UK has been extended to 70 years after an author’s death or between 90 and 120 years in some cases. This is due in part to lobbying over the past few years with the stance that music is a global economy and the original artists (and the labels who signed them) should be able to reap the rewards of the original audio recording.
While this is generally “good”, it puts us producers who sample in an audio minefield whereby clearances for mass releases have never been so important as we don’t all have the bank balances of Jay-Z, Kanye West or Will.i.am to pay astronomical court fees.
Originally this extension process began in 2009 in the UK but took longer to be cleared by the European Union (as copyright laws need to be consistent throughout the EU).
Here are some new additions to the Intellectual Property Laws too:
- A “session fund” paying many performers (such as session musicians) 20% of revenues from sales of their recordings.
- A “clean slate” provision, whereby a producer may not make deductions from payments to performers (such as advances of royalties) from the publication of a recording.
- A “use it or lose it” clause – which allows performers and musicians to claim back their performance rights in sound recordings if they are not being commercially exploited.
Let us know what you think about these law changes on ouror leave your comments below
Find out more information about copyright law on the Rights Direct website.