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PRS hits live streaming

Jack Campin 28 Jan 21 - 07:53 PM
GUEST,JoeG 29 Jan 21 - 04:27 AM
Acorn4 29 Jan 21 - 05:24 AM
Jack Campin 29 Jan 21 - 05:43 AM
Bonzo3legs 29 Jan 21 - 06:32 AM
Steve Gardham 29 Jan 21 - 06:40 AM
punkfolkrocker 29 Jan 21 - 10:12 AM
Howard Jones 29 Jan 21 - 01:49 PM
Joe G 29 Jan 21 - 07:46 PM
Jack Campin 30 Jan 21 - 05:47 AM
Bonzo3legs 30 Jan 21 - 05:55 AM
Steve Gardham 30 Jan 21 - 09:25 AM
Anne Lister 30 Jan 21 - 09:58 AM
punkfolkrocker 30 Jan 21 - 10:52 AM
The Sandman 30 Jan 21 - 01:57 PM
The Sandman 30 Jan 21 - 02:00 PM
Steve Gardham 30 Jan 21 - 02:03 PM
punkfolkrocker 30 Jan 21 - 02:16 PM
The Sandman 30 Jan 21 - 02:24 PM
Steve Gardham 30 Jan 21 - 02:39 PM
The Sandman 30 Jan 21 - 02:46 PM
punkfolkrocker 30 Jan 21 - 02:54 PM
Steve Gardham 30 Jan 21 - 03:04 PM
Rain Dog 30 Jan 21 - 03:19 PM
Rain Dog 30 Jan 21 - 03:21 PM
punkfolkrocker 30 Jan 21 - 03:30 PM
The Sandman 30 Jan 21 - 03:34 PM
Joe G 30 Jan 21 - 06:42 PM
punkfolkrocker 30 Jan 21 - 09:21 PM
Big Al Whittle 30 Jan 21 - 10:02 PM
punkfolkrocker 30 Jan 21 - 10:13 PM
Howard Jones 31 Jan 21 - 09:32 AM
The Sandman 01 Feb 21 - 06:56 AM
Steve Shaw 01 Feb 21 - 07:19 AM
Jack Campin 01 Feb 21 - 07:56 AM
Joe G 01 Feb 21 - 01:18 PM
Howard Jones 01 Feb 21 - 01:41 PM
Anne Lister 01 Feb 21 - 03:32 PM
GUEST,Howard Jones 01 Feb 21 - 07:12 PM
Joe G 01 Feb 21 - 07:19 PM
The Sandman 02 Feb 21 - 03:21 AM
Howard Jones 02 Feb 21 - 05:04 AM
punkfolkrocker 02 Feb 21 - 11:13 AM
Steve Gardham 02 Feb 21 - 01:29 PM
Howard Jones 02 Feb 21 - 01:39 PM
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Subject: PRS hits live streaming
From: Jack Campin
Date: 28 Jan 21 - 07:53 PM

Guardian article

UK music industry outraged over licence fee cost for live-streamed events

A PRS tariff on virtual events grossing less than £500 could make online performances – often raising money for struggling artists and technical staff – ‘grind to a halt’, critics say


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: GUEST,JoeG
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 04:27 AM

To add insult to injury PRS announced this unworkable system in the middle of Independent Venue Week causing many live streams to be pulled including several here in Yorkshire losing much needed income for songwriters that the PRS are supposed to be there to support!

Meanwhile the CEO of PRS is on £980k salary.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Acorn4
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 05:24 AM

When a songwriter does a gig or even performs at a singaround he or she can register their performance on PRS and claim a small fee - over the year it can add up to quite a sizeable amount; they also get paid when someone else covers their song. This is financed by the venues annual licence fee to PRS. At the moment with no venues songwriters are losing this money as well as gig fees, although PRS did arrange an emergency payment in April.

This sounds like a well intentioned move which has backfired.

I suppose it might be got round by making it a free event with a "tip jar" a format in quite common use at the moment.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Jack Campin
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 05:43 AM

PRS has hit free sessions before.

It's going to take an army of stooges to eavesdrop these streams. Have they recruited them?

How does locality work? I've been on international Zoom sessions, covering countries PRS can't collect in. Zoom, Skype and Facetime in the US, Telegram in Russia, Facebook Live might be argued to be split up by local servers. Or do they expect every kitchen with a webcam to register the fact?


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 06:32 AM

PRS can fuck off.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 06:40 AM

Don't often agree with you, Bonz, but you have my blessing on this one.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 10:12 AM

Parasitic Rapacious S.... Fill in the blank "S" of your choice...


OR:

Protection Racketeering S....


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Howard Jones
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 01:49 PM

The issue isn't that PRS shouldn't be licensing online performances, but that the fee they are charging is substantially higher than that for an equivalent live gig. Apparently this is because internet streaming is considered a "broadcast" and attracts a mechanical rights fee as well as performing rights.

I can see the logic of this for large shows, where the online audience may be many times larger than any live audience and where broadcasting (whether by internet or radio/TV) is bringing in substantial additional value. However for small scale gigs the online audience may be no different from those who would have attended the live gig, had this been possible. There is no additional value here from the gig being broadcast, and without the internet it couldn't happen at all, which benefits no one.

It must be particularly galling for those performing their own songs, who must still obtain a licence and then wait at least 6 months for it to be reimbursed through royalties.

It shows exceptional lack of sensitivity and awareness on the part of PRS to instroduce this at a time when the music industry is on its knees and many musicians have lost all their income, while not receiving government support. This affects songwriters too, and they deserve to be paid for their work, but the charges need to be reasonable and proportionate. There doesn't appear to have been any meaningful consultation with interested parties, including ordinary PRS members (I am one).


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Joe G
Date: 29 Jan 21 - 07:46 PM

Well said Howard - yep PRS have really screwed up this one!


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Jack Campin
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 05:47 AM

From the PRS site:

In light of the social distancing measures introduced by the government during the current COVID-19 pandemic, until 30 June 2021, we will be able to offer additional synchronisation rights for customers wishing to webcast/live stream their services within the following sectors:

religious services
fitness classes
dance and education classes
other private tuition
Via the following platforms:

Videos hosted on their own website
FaceTime
Google hangouts
Microsoft Teams
Skype
WhatsApp
Zoom


Yup, they intend to charge music and dance teachers doing remote classes.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 05:55 AM

They can fuck off!!!


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 09:25 AM

And this one!


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Anne Lister
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 09:58 AM

I'm not intending to do anything about my own gigs. The songs are all my own, even if they are registered with PRS, and the gigs haven't been generating enough money to make buying a licence make any kind of sense at all. If they come after me, I'll enjoy telling them, and finding out what kind of legal basis they have. Of course it would be good to have some income from the various performers who perform my songs - if that happened, and I received some revenue every time someone sang one of them, I'm sure I'd be much richer. But it doesn't happen, so why go for concerts at a time of lockdown when the live gigs aren't possible? Someone has made a monumental blunder here and it doesn't help anyone who needs helping. By the way, as a PRS member I shall be writing to tell them so.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 10:52 AM

Do PRS get a commission from this.. is that what it's all really about...???

Some desperately greedy bastards making sure they're still raking in their percentage,
by enforcing mean spirited payments on lockdown suffering musicians...??????


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: The Sandman
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 01:57 PM

song sessions that are tradtional will presumably not be affected.
This is a classic example of PRS defeating their own supposed aims ,which are supposed to be looking after the welfare of songwriters Wankers.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: The Sandman
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 02:00 PM

will be intersting to see if IMRO will follow suit, if PRS get sufficIent bad publicity perhaps they can be made to back down


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 02:03 PM

pfr, you live in a country where the majority vote for this type of philosophy. Either soak it up or pick up a gun!


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 02:16 PM

PRS should be going after exploitative services like spotify, who boast 10s of millions of songs to stream,
while blatantly ripping off songwriters and performers...

But PRS don't seem to have that legal clout. or ambition..
So instead they are attempting to extort and intimidate far easier targets;
struggling grass roots musicians...


[Steve - btw.. I'd love to own guns, if British law wasn't so effective
at protecting society from angry nutters with guns...]


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: The Sandman
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 02:24 PM

I would suggest a petition, to be shared on facebook, to be started by a PRS member.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 02:39 PM

Call me a cynic but I'm guessing most PRS members would not want to rock the boat. These self-appointed institutions are not interested in the rank and file and can afford to pay unscrupulous lawyers to shoot down anyone who complains. Welcome to capitalist society!

My philosophy-- keep your head below the parapet and hope they don't notice you.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: The Sandman
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 02:46 PM

yes, i used to be a member , i think there are some people who adminster the distribution, who are fat cats, and are doing a nice salary out of it, my experience of IMRO is the same
Jim Carroll was right


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 02:54 PM

IMHO..

Extended covid lockdown is the final purge,
culling any remaining working class musicians, singers, actors, artists, etc..

Accelerating the complete take over of all future best available creative opportunities,
by affluent public school educated young showbiz and Arts scene wannabes...

PRS and similar 'official' bodies
are helping deliver the coup de grâce to any surviving financially stricken walking wounded...

[Note: remember that's just an IMHO...]


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 03:04 PM

Yep, it falls into place. Everywhere you look. Run down and privatise all public institutions. Kill off all dissent. Who will be the first scapegoats? I fear for my grandchildren. At least they're bright enough to dig their way out of the s**t.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Rain Dog
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 03:19 PM


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Rain Dog
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 03:21 PM

Note: remember that's just an IMHO...]

Honestly?


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 03:30 PM

Well, I wouldn't dissuade other folks if they might agree with my 'IMHO'...


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: The Sandman
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 03:34 PM

I agree, pfr


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Joe G
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 06:42 PM

There are a lot of very unhappy PRS members and I know some of them are taking the issue up with the organisation. There also seems to be some discussion about whether an alternative organisation to PRS can be established by grassroots musicians - it won't be easy and may come to nothing but well worth exploring.

and for God's sake don't give pfr a gun! Though there are a few I'd trust less with one and most are in our current Government


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 09:21 PM

Joe G - Not fair.. why can't working class lefties also be gun nuts...!!!???

I grew up with my uncle as a role model..
His dogs, ferrets, and shotgun, providing rabbits for family meals..

That's the stuff of folk songs..


PRS officials should be made the cruel revenue men villains of newly written folk songs,
to be passed down to future generations...


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 10:02 PM

Is anyone seriously suggesting that the PRS will listen to all these cybercasts to check out which copywrights are affected. moreover that folk cyberclub organisers are going to furnish them with information of the songs and publishers.

In forty odd years gigging, i only ever once met a PRS employee checking out what I was playing - it was one night at the drill Hall Vaults in Salford. He gave me the form and I could have put down any old shit. The guy didn't have a clue - he'd never heard of Hank Williams, Ewan MacColl, - much less their publishers.

artists coming into contact with the PRS is a bit like the possibility of two ants crossing the same forest meeting each other. It has bigger fish to fry.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 30 Jan 21 - 10:13 PM

Al - but it's 2021..

The PRickS can now lazily sit back safe with their feet up,
while computer search algorithms rapidly trawl social media videos
to identify songs from audio streams..

Not like the old days when they'd risk being met by blokes like my uncle
if they snooped on pub singalongs...


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Howard Jones
Date: 31 Jan 21 - 09:32 AM

I'm one PRS member who has complained to them. Fortunately I don't depend on income from either performing or writing for my living. The irony is that this actually disadvantages PRS members who put on their own online shows. Non-members who perform only their own compositions don't need a licence, but members must have a licence as RPS has the collection rights, and then wait at least 6 months for PRS to pay them back their own money in the form of royalties.

I'm not sure another organisation is the way to go. We don't want the situation which appears to prevail in the US where there are several performing rights organisations and a venue has to get licences from all of them to be sure all the repertoire likely to be performed will be covered.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: The Sandman
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 06:56 AM

IMRO is much the same you have to wait until there is 500 in an account before they pay you


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 07:19 AM

"Not like the old days when they'd risk being met by blokes like my uncle
if they snooped on pub singalongs..."

A few years ago a PRS goon with a clipboard suddenly appeared at our pub session. The landlord was able to give us about five minutes' notice. The chap interrogated us for the best part of an hour, listing all the tunes/songs we admitted to playing/singing. We behaved perfectly. We had no written lists to damn us and we didn't mention anything we knew had been composed by a person with a name. It didn't take us long to fathom that he didn't have a bloody clue about our kind of music, even though he was portentously scribbling down titles. We went from being a bit concerned to having a bit of fun with him. Neither the landlord nor we heard any more.

We managed to not mention Ashokan bloody Farewell...


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Jack Campin
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 07:56 AM

One of them turned up to the Sunday afternoon Sandy Bells session, led by Iain Grant the moothie player. Iain didn't just know thousands of tunes, he knew ABOUT them. And could keep going for three hours with nothing composed by anyone who died aftwr 1929.

PRS's task with streaming is far easier. As well ad bots they can farm the snooping out to homeworkers as Amazon does.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Joe G
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 01:18 PM

They have now backtracked on their decision! They could have avoided all the damage done to themselves and artists by consulting on this issue in the first place rather than imposing a ridiculous fee structure

PRS Statement


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Howard Jones
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 01:41 PM

Good news. But why is it limited to the duration of the coronavirus crisis?

However it still doesn't help the many other small online events, who accept that they need a licence but don't see why it should cost considerably more than the same event with a live audience.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Anne Lister
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 03:32 PM

I sent them an angry email yesterday, complaining (a) that I saw no reason why they should expect me to pay for a licence to perform my own songs, when they don't require me to do that for any other performance, (b) that it was unfair to venues, too, (c) that there was no consultation and (d) that as a member I would expect them to inform me properly, via email or post, rather than for me to stumble on their announcement on Facebook by sheer chance. I haven't yet had a reply to this, but now the retraction has happened I see that (c) and (d) are still relevant. An object lesson in how not to behave.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: GUEST,Howard Jones
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 07:12 PM

This concession only applies while live gigs are closed, and only where the revenue is less than £500. So not really much of a concession, although better than nothing.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Joe G
Date: 01 Feb 21 - 07:19 PM

Yes that is true - a step forward but they need to engage with musicians and venues if there is to be a full resolution of the issue


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: The Sandman
Date: 02 Feb 21 - 03:21 AM

please note concessions are only achieved by protesting


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Howard Jones
Date: 02 Feb 21 - 05:04 AM

I wonder whether the PRS is acting in breach of its own rules here. Rule 2(a) says

"By virtue of the rights vested or required to be vested in the Society pursuant to its Articles of Association, the Society shall exercise and enforce, in accordance with these Rules, and for the benefit of its Members and the members of Affiliated societies, all the rights and remedies conferred and provided by the Copyright Act..." (my emphasis)

Charging members to use their own works, and to take an administration fee for giving them back their own money several months later, doesn't seem to me to be acting for the benefit of its members.


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: punkfolkrocker
Date: 02 Feb 21 - 11:13 AM

I've never been a member, so am curious how PRS were granted such heavy handed legal powers
to enforce license payment...???


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 02 Feb 21 - 01:29 PM

I'm sure you can guess, pfr!


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Subject: RE: PRS hits live streaming
From: Howard Jones
Date: 02 Feb 21 - 01:39 PM

PRS and similar organisations are copyright collection organisations operating under the Copyright and Patents Act 1988. In principle, they're a good thing, because they greatly simplify the process of obtaining the rights holder's permission to use copyright material. Instead of having to contact the rights holder every time you want to perform, record or broadcast their work and negotiate a fee with them (you still have to do this where holders don't belong to a collection organisation, and it is a pain), they simply charge the venue (or record label, or broadcaster) for a licence and pay the royalties out of that.

I imagine this works reasonably well for the mainstream music industry, but for those operating on the fringes (ie most of the folk world) it is a pain. PRS are notoriously agressive in their dealings with people who need a licence, and it's difficult to persuade them that you're not using music which they control. There is a lack of transparency about how they set their charges and what basis they have for levying them - often their answer is "because we say so". They are poor at consulting or explaining things to their members - we're expected to be grateful that they've done such a good deal on our behalf, but often this ignores that nobody gets anything if gigs are cancelled or venues close because of excessive licensing charges.

PRS is a not-for-profit organisation, but their 2019 accounts show operating costs of £101m, so someone is doing all right from it. £28.4m went on wages and salaries, and the highest paid director received £991,000.


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