'We must fine-tune the wording': AIM weighs in on Copyright Directive debate

'We must fine-tune the wording': AIM weighs in on Copyright Directive debate

The Association Of Independent Music (AIM) has weighed in on the current Copyright Directive dispute.

Last week, a statement signed by music bodies ICMP, IFPI and IMPALA said the current draft no longer met the original objectives and should no longer proceed in its current form.

The UK Council of Music Makers (CMM), comprising BASCA, Featured Artists Coalition, Music Managers Forum, MPG and the Musicians' Union, then hit back at those claims in an open letter.

IMPALA executive chair Helen Smith clarified that the organisation fully supports the Directive, "subject to the fixes that are still needed to the text". “We are raising the alarm about the text on the member states’ table, which has fundamental problems," she said. "Urgent action is needed to move forward with a text that achieves its original purpose."

"The recipe still has some holes in it and they need to be fixed before the cake can go in the oven. IMPALA continues to make constructive proposals in this regard. We have backed this proposal from the very beginning, but our support is not at any price." 

The recipe still has some holes in it and they need to be fixed before the cake can go in the oven

Helen Smith

Impala

AIM has now added its voice to the debate, arguing: "It is critical not to allow the debate on some of the details to derail the overall intention of the legislation and we must fine-tune the wording to ensure it achieves what it was intended to do."

The full statement from AIM CEO Paul Pacifico reads as follows: "As we enter the final stages of debate around the proposed new European Copyright Directive, the temperature is rising as everyone involved is concerned to ensure that their particular priorities are not overlooked - and understandably so. 

"At this stage, it is critical not to allow the debate on some of the details to derail the overall intention of the legislation and we must fine-tune the wording to ensure it achieves what it was intended to do.

"Our feeling is that we are largely there and that some important tweaks would deliver those results.

"The online world stands to gain from this legislation and the commercial voices within the independent music community stand with the aim of wanting to see the right balance achieved between Big Tech and the creative community.

"The commercial partners within the independent music community have consistently gone the extra mile for their creative partners, unilaterally publishing the Fair Digital Deals Declaration long before the copyright directive was opened to ensure artists got better deals and shared in the success of the market. Throughout the debates on copyright the independents have also supported the principles of the performer provisions on transparency and remuneration in articles 14-16 in addition to fighting hard to make sure the right balance is struck in article 13.

"We have always stood up for doing the right thing and in this moment of intense pressure, that has not changed.

"If there is legitimate debate to be had to tweak wording in the legislation to optimise its outcomes and avoid negative and unintended consequences, we should be able to have that debate in good faith. If in the face of the unprecedented lobbying campaign by Big Tech, the Directive has been diluted or distorted to an unaceptable degree, then that too should be open to debate and question.

"AIM’s community of independent artists and commercial partners undoubtedly wants to see the Copyright Directive adopted - but with the right provisions that achieve the mandate originally set out. It cannot be a Directive for the sake of a Directive and one that undermines, rather than supports the creative and cultural sector in the digital age.

"Getting the Directive right is crucial to this and to push the Directive through without taking the opportunity to ensure it is fit for purpose undermines this unique moment for our voice to be heard in this David and Goliath struggle against the purely commercial interests of Big Tech who continue to use the absurd argument that undermining creator rights will somehow lead to creators being better protected and paid.”

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