UK House of Commons culture committee wants copyright extension
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The copyright term for sound recordings is back on the public agenda in UK,
after a report from the House of Commons culture committee has recommended
its extension from 50 to 70 years, despite the negative feedback received
earlier from Andrew Gowers’ report or a recent study commissioned by the
European Union and made public in January 2007.
The Culture committee report considered that the musicians have a “moral
right” to keep control of their creations while alive and that 7000 people
will lose in the next years their royalties from the 50s and 60s recordings.
Also the report considered there was a non-reasonable difference between the
copyright term for songwriters, whose families keep the copyright 70 years
after the death of the author and the 50-year rule for sound recordings.
“We recommend that the government should press the European Commission to
bring forward proposals for an extension of copyright term for sound
recordings to at least 70 years.”, concluded the report.
77 UK MPs have signed a parliamentary motion calling for this extension.
EDRi-member ORG has publicly opposed the change asking from the people to
remind the politicians to debate this issue on the basis of evidence – which
points firmly against extension – rather than nostalgia.
The decision of the UK MPs is opposite to Andrew Gowers’ report, backed by
the Treasury, that recommended not to extend the copyright term for sound
Moreover, Gowers exclusively revealed to Out-Law Radio last month that, far
from leaning towards extension, he almost recommended shortening the term of
“I could have made a case for reducing it based on the economic arguments,”
he said. “We certainly considered it, and if you look at the report that
came from the academics that we commissioned to examine the arguments and
examine the evidence they also argued very robustly that 50 years could be
arguably more than enough.”
Copyright extension back on Commons’ agenda (16.05.2007)
Music stars ‘must keep copyright’ (17.05.2007)
Copyright extension: Seems our MPs haven’t been doing their homework
EDRI-gram: Copyright extension term rejected by EU commissioned report