Brussels, 11 July 2016 | Open letter to President Juncker as published in the Parliament Magazine
Performers in Europe need a right to equitable remuneration to be fairly rewarded for the online use of their work
Dear President Juncker,
We, the partners of the FAIR INTERNET campaign representing over 500.000 professional performers in Europe (singers, musicians, dancers, actors among others), welcome the prominence given to the fair remuneration of creators in the digital environment on the European Commission’s agenda.
However, promises of fair remuneration are not enough.
Now is the moment for the European Commission to come forward with concrete legislative measures.
Since the adoption in 2001 of the Information Society Directive, performers have expected to receive a fair share of the revenues generated by downloading and streaming services.
Regrettably, the reality for most of them is strikingly different today.
The value created by the audiovisual and music industries via online services does not truly benefit those at the root of the creation, despite performers having been granted legislative protection for more than 15 years.
This unfair situation cannot be redressed under current EU rules. A modernised copyright framework is essential in order to create a sustainable creative sector in Europe, allowing all performers to earn a decent living.
All performers need to benefit from a fair share of the value generated by on demand services. Transparency and fair contracts cannot be expected to guarantee this in isolation.
Today, most performers only receive a single, global and perpetual buy-out fee for their work. Only a very small minority of them receive royalties, which are often modest and opaque.
This is why we urge you to come forward, as part of the copyright reform package expected for this autumn, with a legislative proposal providing performers with an unwaivable right to receive equitable remuneration from on-demand services, subject to mandatory collective management.
No more time must be wasted. We urge you to take the necessary action now.
The FAIR INTERNET partners