UK Copyright Laws May Be Extended
May 16, 2007 at 11:39 AM (PT)
British copyright laws for sound recordings must be extended beyond 50 years to prevent veteran musicians such as CLIFF RICHARD and PAUL McCARTNEY from losing royalties later in life, a report from the HOUSE OF COMMONS culture, media and sport committee said today (5/16). The committee, made up of lawmakers from all political parties, wants to match the U.S.'s 95-year copyright period but proposed a middle ground of at least 70 years.
"We have not heard a convincing reason why a composer and his or her heirs should benefit from a term of copyright which extends for lifetime and beyond, but a performer should not," the committee said. "Given the strength and importance of the creative industries in the UK, it seems extraordinary that the protection of intellectual property rights should be weaker here than in many other countries whose creative industries are less successful."
We have not heard a convincing reason why a composer and his or her heirs should benefit from a term of copyright which extends for lifetime and beyond, but a performer should not.
If the rules don't change, RICHARD's first hit, "Move It!" from 1958, would lose protection in 2009; such tracks as THE BEATLES' "Love Me Do" will also soon be out of date.