Since 1994, I have been involved in the worldwide effort to secure to songwriters, music publishers, recording artists and record labels the opportunity to earn ample financial rewards from their contributions to commerce and to culture. To this end, I have worked to identify new business models for the music industry that will be sustainable in light of the changed circumstances imposed by the Internet, and to change applicable law, as needed, to facilitate implementation of the industry’s new ways of doing business.
I helped ASCAP bring voluntary collective licensing of music to the Internet. In 1995, I developed and authored ASCAP’s license agreement authorizing Internet performances of the music in ASCAP’s catalog. I also directed the collection and analysis of music use data that allowed ASCAP to make the first-ever distribution of royalties by a collecting society to songwriters and music publishers for Internet performances of their works.
In 1996, I organized and chaired the ASCAP International Round Table on the Role of Collecting Societies in the Online Marketplace. Twenty-eight organizations participated, representing rights owners from Europe, Asia, South America, the United States and Canada. We discussed how to determine which collective should have authority to license Internet transmissions that originate in one territory and end in another, and how to apportion and pay royalties earned from such transborder transmissions.
I served as a co-chair of the delegation of the American Bar Association and as a member of the CISAC delegation to the deliberations of the World Intellectual Property Organization that led to the WIPO Copyright Treaty and to the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty. I also represented songwriters and music publishers in the inter-industry negotiations that led to passage of the Audio Home Recording Act, the Digital Performance Rights in Sound Recordings Act, the Fairness in Music Licensing Act, the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act, and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
In 2008, I participated, at the invitation of Viviane Reding, EC Commissioner for Information Society and Media, in inter-industry discussions regarding the extent, if any, to which ISPs should be called upon to act as enforcers on behalf of content owners.
I advised the government of Vietnam on legal and judicial reform needed to comply with the intellectual property law provisions of the U.S.-Vietnam Bilateral Trade Agreement and for membership in the World Trade Organization. And I worked with representatives of the Vietnamese music industry to establish a music rights collective for Vietnam; and with managers of collectives throughout the Caribbean basin to organize a regional collecting society for rights in musical works and sound recordings.
I have spoken at numerous international conferences on the impact of the Internet on the exercise and management of copyrights and neighboring rights. A list of these conferences is available here.
In addition, I have written a series of articles on how to effectively monetize recorded music in the context of the emerging global digital communications network. A list of these publications is available here.
My objective throughout has been to develop and articulate a full, fair and feasible solution to the crisis that grips the digital music marketplace. My most recent article is entitled “Common Sense, Accommodation and Sound Policy for the Digital Music Marketplace.” It was published in the winter 2008 edition of the Journal of International Media and Entertainment Law. In it I set out the fullest statement of the solution I propose.
To learn more about my proposal, click here.
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