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YouTube To Block Music Videos In the UK

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the music-videos-in-the-uk dept.

The Internet 161

ChunKing writes "YouTube is to block all premium music videos to UK users after failing to reach a new licensing agreement with the Performing Rights Society. For many of us in the UK this is great news. The two main music licensing agencies in the UK — Phonographic Performance Limited and PRS — have a stranglehold on music use in this country and are stifling creativity."

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New 404 message: (5, Funny)

Goffee71 (628501) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133189)

This Jimmy Page is left intentionally blank

New YouTube SENSATION in the Americas... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133207)

As seen here. [youtube.com] I wonder how long it will be before this guy is banished...

Re:New 404 message: (2, Informative)

CmdrGravy (645153) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133397)

It looks to me like the PRS needs Google more than Google needs them. Hopefully Google will refuse to show any more of their dross until they can come back with some reasonable and sensible licensing terms for all their music.

The most ridiculous part is that the PRS apparently can't even tell Google which artists would be covered by their licence. If they don't know who they're representing then how are the artists ever going to get any money from them ? Totally ridiculous !

Re:New 404 message: (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133577)

Obviously they have no intention of passing the money on to the artists. Just like they have no problem collecting money for artists they don't represent.

"Great news?" (3, Insightful)

lanes (1484749) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133193)

What am I missing? Is the idea that people are going to complain about it until something changes?

Re:"Great news?" (5, Informative)

lilo_booter (649045) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133253)

I think the intention is that it will raise public awareness of the issue, and is thus a good thing.

Re:"Great news?" (3, Insightful)

slim (1652) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134079)

Public awareness might well be a good thing.

It's quite common to see PRS stickers on the instrument cases of amateur musicians. Presumably the logic is "I'm a performer. I support the society that protects my right to perform.". The "Performing Rights Society", right? PRS encourages that misunderstanding with the slogan "keep music live".

So it's good to spread the word that that is not what this organisation is about. This is the organisation that lobbies for more grasping application of copyright law. They're the ones that want you to buy a license just to have a radio in your workplace. They're the ones want it to be illegal to perform Happy Birthday in a public place without the premises having a license.

They campaign to restrict the rights of performers, not protect them.

Re:"Great news?" (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134275)

>>>They're the ones that want you to buy a license just to have a radio in your workplace

You're joking. It's bad enough the UK makes you "rent" your television set, but now you have a license on radio too??? Frak that. The airwaves belong to the People, collectively, and we don't need to rent our own property.

Re:"Great news?" (4, Interesting)

slim (1652) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134405)

You're joking. It's bad enough the UK makes you "rent" your television set, but now you have a license on radio too???

Actually I support the TV license. Most people get more value back for that than they get in return - not only BBC TV, but also its web content, radio, podcasts etc.

The PRS radio-in-the-workplace thing is another matter. They consider that if a customer hears music coming from a radio (or CD player, whatever) that it counts as a 'public performance'.

The insulting thing with radio in particular is that they've already been paid for the content by the broadcaster.

Looking on the bright side, PRS is doing what it's meant to do: lobbying for those it represents; copyright holders. It's government's job to slap them down when they ask too much.

And back on topic: it's Google's right as their customer to say "no thanks, the price is too high, come back when you're cheaper".

Re:"Great news?" (1)

IAmGarethAdams (990037) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134413)

He's not joking.

But it's not a license to own the radio, it's the right to have it on in a shop or office, or anywhere where people can hear it that isn't for personal use.

Yes, it's ambiguous. Yes, it's pretty unenforcable. Yes, there are enough loopholes that I think a lot of people wouldn't even pay lip service to the idea. Yes, it's ridiculous but it's there as long as people are paying it

Re:"Great news?" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27135029)

It's quite common to see PRS stickers on the instrument cases of amateur musicians. Presumably the logic is "I'm a performer. I support the society that protects my right to perform.". The "Performing Rights Society", right? PRS encourages that misunderstanding with the slogan "keep music live".

Actually, the PRS stickers on instrument cases of musicians may be for "Paul Reed Smith" (PRS) guitars. I couldn't say for sure without seeing the sticker, but I'm sure the logos are different.

Huh wot ? (-1, Offtopic)

gx5000 (863863) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133195)

Great news ?
Orwell's shifted so many times in his grave as to come back up to the surface by now.
No I mean really, between the lack of privacy laws and such, how long until the people of
Britain rise up ?

Re:Huh wot ? (2, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133301)

Don't worry. You privacy is totally safe, Mr. Richardson. Just finish your bagel and stop worrying so much.

Re:Huh wot ? (4, Insightful)

16Chapel (998683) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133307)

I think we need a new version of Godwin's law: With any Slashdot discussion concerning Britain, it's only a matter of time before somebody mentions Orwell. Look, have you actually read 1984, or any of Orwell's works? He was righteously angry about many things, but copyright law was not one of them.

Re:Huh wot ? (1)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133351)

With any Slashdot discussion concerning Britain, it's only a matter of time before somebody mentions Godwin.

Fixed that for ya.

Re:Huh wot ? (2, Insightful)

vain gloria (831093) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134051)

Amusingly enough, the propensity to unthinkingly invoke Orwell is akin to his concept of duckspeak. Reading multiple +5 Insightful "1984 wasn't an instruction manual maaaan" posts in a single Brit-related topic makes me wonder about the duckmods though. Perhaps it's hard to peck out the -1 Overrated with a bill?

you don't know Orwell very well (1)

Erris (531066) | more than 5 years ago | (#27135143)

Orwell was concerned with government interference in popular culture and the damage this does to society. In his Homage to Catalina, he notes his shock at meeting a "professional liar," a PR person for the Soviet government. He also notes the trust ignorant people invest in such liars. In 1984 popular culture was reduced to folk songs that no one had the vocabulary to understand and mindless songs and books litterally "spun" by machines. The primary control of culture today by government comes from the abuse of copyright law. We should all be concerned by the intellectual poverty this brings and the political abuse that is both cause and effect of this control and poverty. Every step away from freedom of expression and exchange of ideas brings us closer to other forms of government control. In the end, you will see five fingers if you are told to see five fingers.

Re:Huh wot ? (4, Insightful)

FinchWorld (845331) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133321)

Tell people there data may be mined whilst looking for terrorists, they will applaud it. Tell them certain website have been blocked, as child molesters could use them to exchange information, and they'll nod sagely in agreement.

Tell them they can't watch there favourite music videos due to "money issues", they'll cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war.

Re:Huh wot ? (1)

Aerynvala (1109505) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133803)

Well, yeah. Exactly. It's part of the same problem: people not wanting to think about the complex issues society faces. So they'll tolerate government violation of privacy, government censoring of certain types and modes of speech. But if the things they use to distract themselves from how moronic they're being are taken away too, then of course they're going to freak out. It's sad and stupid but not remotely surprising.

Re:Huh wot ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134823)

tell them their spelling is off and they'll call you a grammar nazi.

Re:Huh wot ? (4, Funny)

Fx.Dr (915071) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133395)

"...how long until the people of Britain rise up to the tune of Yakity Sax?"

Fixed that for ya.

if I had laughed any harder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133903)


Every cloud.... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133197)

At least i won't be able to be rick rolled now

Re:Every cloud.... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133279)

They said "Premium".

Re:Every cloud.... (5, Funny)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133393)

At least i won't be able to be rick rolled now

Wrong. Guess what you get if you try to view a blocked vid.

youtube...hulu... (2, Insightful)

wjh31 (1372867) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133203)

who knows what else, anyone got a half decent US proxy?

Yup (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133651)

I know of one where the lower halves are decent, but it's not exciting enough for me anymore, so I'm looking for another where the upper halves are decent....

Re:youtube...hulu... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134621)

No. But most of the good stuff is on Tudou or Megavideo.

Correlation and causality (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133243)

You can't be creative because YouTube doesn't want to pay up for distribution rights in the UK?

Anarchy in the UK? (1, Insightful)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133255)

Between your new "WON'T SOMEONE PLEASE THINK OF THE CHILDREN?" Firewall [itexaminer.com] and this, it makes me wonder WTF is going on in the UK? I thought things were getting bad in the U.S. with the RIAA/MPAA and their thugs, but lately it seems like the UK and Australia are outpacing everyone on this sort of stuff.

Re:Anarchy in the UK? (2, Insightful)

M-RES (653754) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133943)

What's going on is:

  1. US moneyed interests think up some new globally hegemonic business plan and/or legislation.*
  2. The US political 'allies' (better known by the local indigenous populations as 'lapdogs') step in to help spread this insidious new plan/legislation to their own parts of the world by helping to steer it through the local legislative processes for a personal cut of the profits.
  3. Profit!

And voila, we have finally solved the underpant gnomes' quandry and sold our individual nation states down the toilet for a backhander. Well done the politicians.

*Disclaimer: not ALWAYS US moneyed interests - quite often also EU moneyed interests too, but much of this seems to originate in the US, such as the RIAA/MPAA getting local arms of the same gang (MPC, MPA, PRS) involved. Once we have been successfully subjugated, expect to see versions coming your way too, once they work out how to break through the legal wall of the constitution.

Their own fault (5, Interesting)

ledow (319597) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133275)

Record industry (or their representative in some manner) gets stroppy, demands multiples of the usual licensing fee.
Google tells them to get stuff (made $7bn last year by NOT caving in to people like you)
Record industry up in arms, tries to gather sympathy
Everybody else in the UK goes on Youtube to look for the latest Rhianna, finds it's still online, it's just certain "official" and HD versions that you're missing, and carries on as normal (or, at worst, moves to a better video place if they REALLY want high-quality music videos).
Google carries on making $7bn a year
Record industry misses out on a share of Google's IMMENSE revenues.
Artists revolt and put their work on Youtube themselves.

Seriously, is it just me or is the record industry TRYING to commit commercial suicide?

Re:Their own fault (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133377)

(made $7bn last year by NOT caving in to people like you)

That's a nice way of saying "gets away with murder because it's the new Microsoft." When Google bought YouTube, everybody wondered why they were taking on that huge liability. People made the mistake of thinking that Google would be held to the same standards as other web sites. You should try hosting millions of videos without first clearing the copyrights. Google negotiates after the fact and the only punishment is that it has to change its ways if the deal doesn't happen. You try that.

The Pirate Bay is on trial for making money by furthering copyright infringement, yet here you are, touting a $7 billion profit as if that were something Google earned as a defender of fair business?

Re:Their own fault (5, Insightful)

Malenx (1453851) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133539)

Man, such an ignorant post.

Google barely scratches a profit from youtube currently. That $7 billion profit your crying about is from other aspects of the company, not form advertising on youtube.

Google negotiates after the fact because they are big enough that other companies can't exploit them. It's not murder, it's user generated content. It's not Google throwing up those videos. Google if anything, is inadvertently acting as a wall currently, between users and corporations trying to squash the information paradigm shift.

Sure they're making billions in return, that's what companies do. If they weren't making it, someone else would be.

Re:Their own fault (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133631)

That $7 billion profit your crying about is from other aspects of the company, not form advertising on youtube.

You mean Google did NOT make "$7bn last year by NOT caving in to people like you." and "ledow" ignorantly made that connection just to express his Google-is-the-savior argument?

It's not Google throwing up those videos.

I wrote "hosting", not publishing. Again, you try that. The Pirate Bay isn't even hosting copyrighted material, but they get dragged in front of a judge.

It's not murder, it's user generated content

No, it's called an expression.

Re:Their own fault (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133877)

The Pirate Bay gets dragged in front of a judge, but you omitted the minor detail that they do appear to be winning.

And I'm sure Google has been in front of a judge before as well.

Also, Youtube became a big player before they were bought by Google.

Re:Their own fault (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134049)

YouTube became a big player in the sense that they got the attention but did not have any liquidity worth suing for. The question back then was why someone with enough resources to be an interesting litigation target would buy something so obviously in muddy legal waters. The "user generated content" defense was bandied about back then, but clearly that's not what it's about. You can still make your own videos and use music that is royalty free (CC, PD, DIY).

Re:Their own fault (1)

16Chapel (998683) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133913)

"If they weren't making it, someone else would be."

Yeah, but that's the problem - the someone else should be the artist / originator. OK, that's the pipedream, but the fact is that the PRS is a non-profit organisation that collects royalties for musicians (not very efficiently these days, it has to be said), and YouTube / Google _are_ taking money out of their pocket.

Yes, it's shortsighted of the PRS to block YouTube, especially since they have no viable alternative, and the PRS has a very haphazard approach to allocating the received money - but it doesn't just represent the major players, this is the mechanism by which all pro and semi-pro musicians in the UK get their royalties.

Re:Their own fault (2, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133937)

No... my point is that $7bn means that they can ENTIRELY abandon music videos (and, thus, enforce a policy to remove music videos from YouTube) and not even care. In fact, they would probably make MORE money through less hassles. None of that $7bn came from people paying Google to look at music videos, except a TINY, TINY proportion of Google's ad earnings which are probably FAR outweighed by the licensing required for them. But I bet some of those ads fund the record industry indirectly (e.g. a CD-Wow advert on a particular Youtube music video for the CD etc.)

The fact that Google *aren't* being sued shows that the record industry are the hypocrites, because they KNOW they won't make anywhere near as much money if they started annoying the big users of their content - much better to target the end-user and ask them to pay £1000 for a single MP3. If the record industry could AFFORD to lose music videos being available on Google, it would have sued for compliance, etc. and caused lots of hassle by now. They know, though, that would be a stupid move that would alienate them and ultimately cost them a lot of "airtime", so they try to triple (or more) their earnings overnight because Google is bringing them a lot of royalties - however they get *too* greedy and Google do EXACTLY what they should do - refuse to have Music Videos for the countries that are giving them legal/licensing hassle. I'm sure it won't be long before the two "settle their differences" and once again the money flows to the record companies because, to be honest, they need it at the moment and they can't afford to not be present on one of the world's largest websites.

My point is that shouting and bawling in the press about Google not wanting to pay the new, enhanced, shinier (fabricated) royalites isn't going to make Google pay... in fact, the opposite and the UK will be the only country listed on Youtube as "Unavailable for music" because of such stupidity. Does that make Google look stupid? No, they are complying with the law, exactly as the record companies have wanted all this time. Does it make the UK record industry look stupid? Yes, because they are the only ones NOT on Youtube. Greed has become the downfall because Google can *easily* afford to not care, but legally comply, and thus just block music videos for UK Youtube. The *only* people I have heard complain about this have been complaining about the record industry, not Google/Youtube which would seem the obvious choice for the layman to complain about.

I don't particularly care for Google, or Microsoft, or any of the others, but Google don't seem to have done anything wrong - they were paying the previous license (teething problems from the takeover aside, I don't know the details), they wanted to pay the new license but it was too expensive, so they pull videos in the smallest region that is affected by the licensing. Seems to me they did everything they could, to the full extent of the law. Additionally, they are still bound by all the laws they've *previously* been bound by, including being a carrier of other people's creative content - there's nothing stopping the UK or other record industry from obtaining cease-and-desists on anything they find infringing, but Google are *not* necessarily required to police the entire website without notification.

The Pirate Bay, by the way, are on trial for (allegedly) "facilitating" the potential for copyright infringement to occur - nothing to do with the money they made, unless you only read press clippings from a particular party in the case. There's a big difference there, under a different law system, in a case in which there is no decision yet (but it's not looking good for the record industry). I have quite expected Pirate Bay to have legal problems for a very long time now (because they are walking a legal knife-edge in a litigious gray area) and this is the first time anything's happened.

I don't care what the Pirate Bay do... I expect them to get arrested, or sued. It's not my concern and I have little sympathy. The thing is, that the case has been played out to such an extent that a lot of non-legal stuff is being used to try to convict them (hence your mention of how much money they made - it has no bearing on the legal case of whether they *aided* copyright infringement). I have sympathy for the fact that their opponents are not playing things by the book and costing them a lot of money with semi-legal hassle, but if they get convicted, I won't be up in arms about it. Similarly, I don't care if Google plays music videos or not, or whether they made $10bn from music videos alone... they've done what they are legally required to do and if they *haven't* it's not up to me to sue them. If they *weren't* paying royalties and *refused* UK legal orders to remove identified clips (or, at least, made them inaccessible in the UK), then I might have a problem with the way they do business. Anything beyond that, I don't care if they made tuppence or millions, they've played the game. This is why I don't care for Microsoft - they *don't* play the game. I have more respect for Google and Pirate Bay than I do Microsoft or the record industries because of that.

The record industry, in almost every developed country, seems to be on a mission to harass, convict and sue on dubious legal grounds, take away my rights to a copyrighted work that I've licensed, fail to make any money on product while simultaneously suing kids for millions and keeping their earnings away from the people they are supposed to represent, all while treating me like a criminal. I perfectly understand why they want to keep the copyrights intact, but they are the wrong people acting, doing things the wrong way, performing legal-mind-tricks ("piracy", copyright extensions, etc.) to try to secure a perpetual living for themselves and in the process hindering genuine, law-abiding customers with unnecesary crap.

P.S. I have *never* bought a record/tape/audio CD for myself in my life. I have *never* purchased online music for myself in my life. I have *never* taped, duplicated, ripped, or "pirated" music for myself in my life. The last audio CD I purchased was seven years ago for my wife - it was non-DRM, cheap, had the track I wanted on it, came in a nice case, I paid full-price for it. I *don't* listen to music (except incidentally through stores playing it, or it being present on films... the closest I get is sometimes I might like MTV or VH-1 on etc.). I don't *avoid* music for some "high-and-mighty" purpose about the music being rubbish - I just don't listen to music because it distracts me from other things I would be doing - On the train, I read papers. At home, I watch TV. In the car, I concentrate on my driving. I have absolutely *no* need to defend Google, artists, the record industry or anything else. I just don't care about music - but I care a hell of a lot more when people deny me my rights or try to make money off something for no effort. Thus, I'm actually quite amused at Google's response. Hell, I was more tempted to buy an MP3 off Amazon when they went DRM-free, just to show support for my rights, than I ever have been by any other musical offering - truth is, I'm skint and can't even spare that much.

(In fact, I just remembered... my last musical connection was that I added some Creative Commons tracks to a game I ported. That was it, and even then I just picked the first seven that sounded half-decent and threw them in. And *even then* I checked with the artist first, despite the license being crystal-clear.)

Play the game and I'll respect you. Believe the same things I believe and I'll support you, provided that you're playing the game. Otherwise, I really *don't* care.

Re:Their own fault (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134341)

Anonymous Coward write:
>>>The Pirate Bay is on trial for making money by furthering copyright infringement, yet here you are, touting a $7 billion profit as if that were something Google earned as a defender of fair business?

I suspect the poster "AC" would be better represented by the initials "RIAA". Obvious shill.

Re:Their own fault (2, Informative)

JasterBobaMereel (1102861) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133585)

Is it just me or were Music Videos given away free as adverts for the product at one time... when did they become the product?

Big hand for the PRS! (4, Insightful)

Fuzzypig (631915) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133295)

Well done PRS, you managed shut out a big advertising opportunity to the artists to supposedly represent. I'm sure the record companies will be round later with a big bunch of flowers to say thanks!

Well done for now forcing people onto sharing sites to pick up ripped DVDs!

Well done for forcing people to go to dodgy malware ridden proxy sites to get around Google's stupid IP range blocking!

Well done for screwing the lesser known and poorer artists who really do get benefit from appearing on YouTube vids, getting some recognition and maybe a handful of those really important sales to keep going.

Big round of applause!

Re:Big hand for the PRS! (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133989)

Do you really think that the average Rihanna or Beyoncé or Estelle listener even knows what a proxy site is, or could configure it to work in IE? I'm sick and tired of the same old dogma that "people will just do something else". Actually, they won't. They just do without. It's people who understand computers (such as slashdot readers) who can do all that stuff, and Katy Perry listeners won't have a f---ing clue. And I don't want to hear that "the internet routes around damage" bunk, either - the internet isn't redundant, and hasn't been since ARPAnet.

This is just The Real World intruding on the internet, which for some bizarre reason thinks that it should be exempt from every law ever passed.

Just Say "No !" (or "Cancel" at least) (1)

ciderVisor (1318765) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134555)

1. Clear out your cookies
2. Go to YouTube
3. It says "You haven't set your country. You appear to come from the UK. 'OK' or 'Cancel' ?"
4. Click 'Cancel'
5. ???
6. Profit !

Kids can do that no probs without having to mess with proxies or anything.

(And yes, the 'blocking' is as brain-dead as that.)

Re:Just Say "No !" (or "Cancel" at least) (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 5 years ago | (#27135249)

I repeat: will your average Beyoncé listener even know what a cookie is, much less the steps needed in IE to clear cookies? And then after that, she'll be pissed off because she has to log into facebook and every forum she posts on again and all her preferences from www.soldouteventtickets.com have vanished.

If not in youtube then in some other site... (1)

rsukumar (1496149) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133337)

If youtube is blocked, then in some other site... But why blocked? Don't the people have chance to see those videos in MTV/VH1?

Re:If not in youtube then in some other site... (1)

gnapster (1401889) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133659)

The point is that YouTube does not want to serve the videos, because they lose more money in royalties than they gain in British viewings. They are boycotting the RPS tax.

Re:If not in youtube then in some other site... (2, Interesting)

Samurai Tony (1202095) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133969)

I don't know if you have watched recently but MTV no longer shows music videos, it is full of My Super Sweet 16 and The Osbournes/Run's House or whatever celebrity they can dig up from decades past.

Re:If not in youtube then in some other site... (1)

slim (1652) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134585)

MTV/VH1 are paying the copyright holders the licensing fees they demand.
So is "some other site" (unless it is breaking copyright law)

Simplified it goes like this:

PRS: You are currently paying $0.001 per play of our videos. Now we want $0.01.
YouTube: Since we get less than $0.01 per play in average revenue, we can't pay you that much. What's your next offer?
PRS: If you want the videos, that's what you have to pay
YouTube: OK, we won't have the videos then
PRS: Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Re:If not in youtube then in some other site... (3, Insightful)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134761)

YouTube: OK, we won't have the videos then
PRS: Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

Yup. Then again its all about posturing. Google is making the point, a bit like Apple did with iTunes, that they don't have to provide their content, getting the other party to realise how little negotiating clout they really have.

The PRS needs to stop whining. (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133353)

FTA In a statement, Mr Porter said the move "punishes British consumers and the songwriters whose interests we protect and represent".
Uhm, guys... You are the ones responsible for the songwriters. youTube have no obligation to them. They have a certain obligation to their own customers, but only as long as serving their customers is profitable for them. They have no obligation to make a net loss.

youTube have shown that they don't need the PRS. The PRS doesn't absolutely need youTube either but it certainly doesn't displace music sales. The songwriters do a lot better if youTube gets these videos for free than if they don't get them at all. The PRS gambled on youTube needing them and they lost

I think we need a new internet. (1)

JoshDmetro (1478197) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133357)

Privatize an internet-like network then no more worries. Just don't let any party-poopers use it.

./ is failing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133379)

"Phonographic Performance Limited"

Common i scrolled all the way down searching for some jokes about this...and nothing

Re:./ is failing (0, Redundant)

gid (5195) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133517)

Ok, I'll start:

Did anyone else read this as "Pornographic Performance Limited"?

-- gid

Re:./ is failing (1, Funny)

ciderVisor (1318765) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134639)

That's nothing - I read it as PPL, which sounds quite similar to the abbreviation for Phase-Locked Loop. Oh, how we laughed !

UK music fans lose again... (3, Informative)

Shrike82 (1471633) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133387)

From TFA:

Services such as Pandora.com, MySpace UK and Imeem have also had issues securing licence deals in the UK in the past 12 months.

The Pandora fiasco is particularly annoying for UK music fans. I was poised to become a subscriber and pay a very reasonable fee to listen to music tailored for my tastes. Instead Pandora were forced to pull the plug in the UK, so everybody loses. Pandora lose subscription funds and advertising, the artists lose income from potential UK subscribers and Pandora adverts, and the listeners lose out on the chance to hear great music.

Actually, the PRS don't seem to be losing out. How strange.

Re:UK music fans lose again... (1)

Cimexus (1355033) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133725)

Actually, Pandora 'pulled the plug' on anyone accessing the site from ANYWHERE outside of the US (and possibly Canada?). I'm in the same boat as you are, here in Australia. Used to love Pandora, but now ... no love :(

Anyway, point is, Pandora becoming US-only had nothing to do with UK authorities/organisations. It happened purely due to American laws/regulations.

Re:UK music fans lose again... (1)

nogginthenog (582552) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133809)

After Pandora pulled the plug on the world it still worked in the UK for around 6 months. They were forced to block UK IPs due to royalty demands.

Re:UK music fans lose again... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133955)

I just recently discovered Pandora for my iPod Touch. I've bought more music this year than in the last 10 years. Pandora is just full of those oh that's who sang that song back when I was a kid moments. It's 2 clicks to iTunes from there.

Re:UK music fans lose again... (3, Insightful)

ZorinLynx (31751) | more than 5 years ago | (#27135005)

Yeah, that's what I don't get. Services like Pandora are free advertising and generate sales for the music industry. So do music videos on YouTube.

Why in the HELL do they always seem to want to hinder or shut down these services? Don't they see that it is just free marketing for them?

mod do3n (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133427)

If *BSD is to on baby...don't over to yet another networking test. guests. Some people platform for the Reformatted file3 countersuit, to decline for

RTFA. (-1, Flamebait)

mumblestheclown (569987) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133447)

If you actually READ THE ARTICLE and still cast the PRS as the bad guy in this, then you really need to put down the crackpipe.

Let's review the situation here:

1. in its "see no evil" way, youtube hosts tens of thousands of music videos which infringe on the copyright of the artists and creators. in doing so, they restrict the ability for those artists to be compensated for these videos via, for example, MTV licensing agreemnts.

2. culture shifts, spurred on by thousands of slashdot piracy rationalists to where the creators of the material now have to come begging to YouTube for a share of the advertising money. YouTube has done nothing useful other than provide distribution at a profit - at absolute best it is the equivalent of the RIAA middleman who plays the regular boogieman here. The only difference here is that youtube, by playing innocent, isnt normally even required to even give money back to the artists.

3. but, the PRS is big eonugh that they manage to secure SOME money back to the artists. PRS claims that what youtube is offering is insufficient compared to what it could have gotten (presumably) via its legitimate licensing contracts (IE MTV). YouTube tells PRS to suck it because it is entitled to its guaranteed profit for the near zero amount that it actually contributes to the creative process besides turning a blind eye to piracy.

and yet, it's PRS, not the youtube mafia, who are the bad guys. typical slashdot logic.


Re:RTFA. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133873)

nice troll, almost got me. :]

Re:RTFA. (1)

chdig (1050302) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134151)

Alright, I'm with you, let's review it:

1. MTV is almost 30 years old. Times change, old timer, and youtube != MTV. If youtube receives a request for removal by a copyright holder, they do so (see Viacom). The thing is, most companies/artists/organizations want to give their media away because the advertising they receive by being on youtube is worth it.

2. As many others have noted, youtube does not make much money off these videos. Distribution costs for youtube are higher than for MTV, and the advertising model is very different. But here's the most important part, and why the U.K should be thanking Google:

The PRS and its partners have been attempting near extortion prices on the licencing of online content. As many other sites have found out (see Pandora), it's impossible to stay in business in the U.K with the charges levied by the PRS. Google is possibly the only company with enough sway to stand up to these fees, and in doing so, they're not protecting their own profit so much as protecting the ability of all similar websites to operate in the U.K.

3. The PRS won't even reply to Google's request for exactly which artists will receive the money (is it Google or the PRS that is less accountable?). Moreover, if you'd READ THE ARTICLE, you might have read this: "Mr Walker told BBC News the PRS was seeking a rise in fees "many, many factors" higher than the previous agreement." Seems more like it's the PRS playing innocent, while hiking fees more than ever before

Everything the UK recording industry is doing seems to be aimed at restricting music on the Internet, in favour of the traditional distribution methods they're so much more comfortable with. Everyone in the UK should be thanking Google for having the guts to stand up for not just their own rights, but those of all startups and smaller players in the online media distribution market.

Re:RTFA. (2, Insightful)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134905)

What you're missing is:

4. Google take down music videos from YouTube

5. PRS start whining that having the videos removed from YouTube is a bad thing for the artists.

It sounds to me like PRS want (a) Google to advertise their product for them, and (b) Google to pay them for the privilege.

Strangehold on creativity? (1)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133459)

Last I heard, you can still compose your own music and perform it without going near those agencies.

In fact, you can produce your own version of anything that is out of copyright and do exactly what you want with it. Anything you created, you can assign the copyright to anyone you like. You can play it on local radio, post it to YouTube, sell your own CDs, and you can tell the PRS to go reproduce itself off. So how does this inhibit creativity?

Who are these idiots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133515)

I'm currently listening to Joshua Bell on YouTube. Never heard of him before, not a great listener classical music or violins. I'm having to force myself NOT to go onto Amazon and buy his stuff. I refused years ago to buy any more CDs after they started crippling them with copy protections but this guy is great. I'm almost caving in and buying a CD. Without YouTube I would NEVER have heard this guy and certainly wouldn't be on the verge of giving him and his recording studio any of my money.

  Complete blithering idiots the lot of them.

the what? (2, Funny)

thanasakis (225405) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133529)

For a moment I read:

The Pornographic Performance Limited has a stranglehold on music use in England?

I almost spit my coffee.

Re:the what? (1)

Seakip18 (1106315) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133633)

Well, have you SEEN some of the stuff those singers wear nowadays? Not that I have!!!..uh....what?

Re:the what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134369)

For a moment I read:

The Pornographic Performance Limited has a stranglehold on music use in England?

I almost spit my coffee.

As an American, I'm unfamiliar with that organization and I did the same thing. Thanks for the post, I had a good laugh because I also was drinking coffee when I read it.

So let me get this straight (1)

Altreus (1492723) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133557)

From now on, the only music we in the UK are allowed to show our friends is the music NOT controlled by these people?

So the only way you can legally hear music that these people want you to pay for is either on the radio or by borrowing the CD from someone?

Can we still legally borrow CDs?

Irrespective of that, it's been years since I paid for music, for the simple reason that if they don't want me to hear it before I buy it, then I'm going to hear it and not buy it, because I hate them now.

So they want us, who now hate them, to give them money for music we've never heard? Would they expect us to buy a painting we've never seen? Cillit Bang without Barry Scott's personal assurance?

It certainly is great news for those music artists in the UK who actually have talent, that's for sure. The plastic music industry is stifling its main* source of income.

* maybe

Re:So let me get this straight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133813)

You start off targetting only PRS-affiliated artists, fair enough, but then say you don't buy *any* music. That's the typical /. attitude: a lot of music is "evil", so I won't buy any. There are plenty of independent musicians and record labels.

I'd like to find out which artists are members of the PRS. All the videos of my favourite bands seem to still be on YouTube, but I'd like to know for sure.

Crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27133647)

For many of us in the UK this is great news.

That sounds like the same argument used when Bush beat Kerry into the white house: "This is good news. Bush will run the country into the ground, so then a smarter guy can fix the unthinkably bad things later!"

Tor - we may as well get used to the speed. (1)

yossarianuk (1402187) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133715)

Well tor users will not be (much) affected (as long as the exit server is not U.K based). We may as well get used to the speed drawback from Tor as soon it is the only way we will be able to have any privacy online....

Not just Youtube (4, Informative)

sfraggle (212671) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133743)

It's not just Youtube that has been harassed by these people. Check out the Youtube blog post [youtube.com] on the issue for some interesting comments, eg.

... I used to run a small business specilaising in car audio. They made me pay an extortionate fee because I had radios on display in my showroom. - Well, of course I did... That was what I was selling.

... We used to listen to the radio in my workplace but we now have to work in silence because the PRS decided someone from the public might hear it so the company would have to pay.

Re:Not just Youtube (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134185)

My wife works in a small florist (2 staff) and used to listen to the radio. The PRS came by and tried to force them to pay an obscene fee for listening to the radio in public - so no more radio.

Re:Not just Youtube (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134615)

I was sitting at a pub when a stranger overheard me say I could burp to any song. He asked me to show him and I did, and he said he worked for the PRS and demanded money from me!

Hey, this is easy!

(not to make light of the PRS actually doing some of this stuff, but to point out there's little reason to believe what you read on the internet.)

Re:Not just Youtube (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134843)

Sorry, that was me... I thought it was a laugh.
I'm not really from PRS, just thought I could make a quick buck.

Long-standing idiocy (3, Insightful)

jonnyj (1011131) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133849)

The PRS is guilty of long-standing idiocy. In one celebrated incident [express.co.uk] a few months back, they attempted to fine a garage owner £2,000 unless his customers turned off their car radios before driving onto his premises.

This thing is absolutely fine with me. I've never watched music videos on Youtube, but I don't for a moment imagine that the kids who did will be queuing up to stuff fistfuls of fivers in the PRS's pockets in some other way. Instead they'll turn to piracy or give up on music and play with Facebook.

In due course, big media will realise that their so-called guardians are actually their enemies and they'll fire them. But, by then, there might not be a music industry that's worthy of the name. It'll be a well-deserved outcome.

PRS Show Inneptitude (4, Insightful)

coofercat (719737) | more than 5 years ago | (#27133911)

I know it's not 'the done thing', but I RTFA. Lord knows, the BBC aren't famed for their excellent technology journalism, but even they managed to show how incredibly stupid and "woe is me" the PRS are.

In the article, the PRS say that they've been pleading with Google to re-instate the videos in the UK. Google of course basically say the PRS made it too expensive for them. The PRS carry on acting like they're the ones who've been kicked in the teeth, and say that Google doesn't want to pay more, "despite the massive increase in YouTube viewing". Of course, as we know, video-views only cost Google money - and only ad-clicks actually make them anything.

So just because a video gets viewed lots of times means nothing - it's how many ad-clicks you get that counts.

However, where a music video is concerned, those views may, in a small number of cases, lead to the viewer deciding to buy that music or video. Of course, Google make nothing out of that sale, but the PRS does.

So the PRS is saying they want Google to pay them for advertising their product, regardless of how much money Google makes or loses from doing so.

So in this story, Google is the closest thing to a representative of the music buying public that we have. The PRS really serves itself, and to a lesser extent the music producers. As a consumer, I'm quite happy with Google's choice - if people don't want to sell me music, then I won't buy it. If someone else on the Internet wants to show me those videos instead, then maybe I'll go there, maybe I won't.

However, if I was a producer, I'd probably be rather upset by the PRS's actions (although given the spin the PRS is putting on this, the producers are probably blaming Google).

Re:PRS Show Inneptitude (1)

slim (1652) | more than 5 years ago | (#27134733)

However, if I was a producer, I'd probably be rather upset by the PRS's actions (although given the spin the PRS is putting on this, the producers are probably blaming Google).

Everything you write is correct in spirit. But to nitpick - I think PRS represents songwriters, not producers. I think they license songs rather than recordings.

I think the PRS is actually right & google wro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27134873)

The PRS usually gets it from both ends with 'small' businesses moaning about the performance fees for having a radio on at work etc. and from the writers/creators receiving a pittance. But in this case I think they are spot on.

They arrange a flat fee license based on the estimated usage of youtube at the time. That agreement expires and they start renegotiation based on the usage now. Google/YouTube in a strangely evil sounding hissy-fit doesn't like the price and censors certain content for a whole country.

Did google have to censor - no! The old agreement was in part retrospective so no problems there. They could have carried on serving up vids while trying to meet at price that is agreeable to both sides. So why do it? Free advertising for YouTube is my best guess my second best being to gain some leverage over the labels (perhaps they want the labels to stump up the PRS fees - they are basically getting free advertising for their product after all).

Unfortunately, as always seems to happen, it's the actual creative people who get screwed.

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