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License Fees for Music in Clubs

The Cyber Law Center has blogged about the Phonographic Performance Company of Australia Limited being permitted to charge night-club owners $1.05 per person per night for playing commercial music up from $0.07. The number of people is calculated on the maximum licensed capacity of the venue – not good if the venue isn’t full. Of course given the huge prices of drinks in clubs this probably makes no difference to the profit margins.

One thing that hasn’t been mentioned in any of the articles I’ve read is whether this applies to clubs that don’t play music from artists represented by the PPCA. If a club can freely play music produced under a Creative Commons license that permits commercial use then the fee increases would be good for the production of music. Also encouraging clubs to pay musicians to perform live is a good thing, most of the best musicians started out with live performances in bars.

The recording industry is the enemy of music. They under-pay artists and lock out competition giving us a succession of talent-less wage-slaves on the radio. It’s difficult to imagine any change other than Digital Restriction Management (DRM) that could make things worse.

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