International Musicians Union Slams UMG's EMI Purchase
April 24, 2012 at 10:52 AM (PT)
The FEDERATION OF INTERNATIONAL MUSICIANS has taken sides with European indie label trade group IMPALA by speaking out against the UMG's EMI takeover deal, reports CMU. The group's sentiments run counter to two American unions representing artists who okayed the deal because UMG promised to comply with and respect current "collective bargaining agreements."
"As they are today, the four major record companies (UNIVERSAL, SONY, EMI, WARNER) already represent a high-market concentration," the FIM statement read. "For performers, this means weak bargaining power and hyper-standardized, disadvantageous contracts. The disappearance of EMI as an autonomous actor would entail an increased concentration of the market forces into a duopoly (UNIVERSAL/SONY), which can only be expected to further deteriorate this already imbalanced situation.
"The problems that artists have been facing in the traditional market for many years are even worsening in the digital world, from which they usually receive insignificant incomes," the group continued. "Should the mergers be authorized by the EU Commission, artists would lose one of the remaining few alternative routes to access the mass market. The new duopoly would also mean less investment, lower quality, fewer jobs, narrowed consumer choice as well as reduced cultural diversity."