PRS for Music begins legal action against SoundCloud


#1

After careful consideration, and following five years of unsuccessful
negotiations, we now find ourselves in a situation where we have no
alternative but to commence legal proceedings against the online music
service SoundCloud.

This struck me like a lightning today, because I’ve recently joined this performance rights organization. As far as I know there are members of PRS on AudioJungle, so what do you guys think? Can we do anything about it, what should we expect, what does it mean for us in general?

Details: http://www.prsformusic.com/SiteCollectionDocuments/Emails/Newsletters/newsletter-august-2015/soundcloud-v2.html?dm_i=2DVV,DT5Y,4R77NH,W265,1


#2

There’s not a lot to do, legal proceedings are what they are. I believe it boils down to either SoundCloud implementing technology to filter out PRS/PRO content, or figuring out a way to remunerate rights holders. Needless to say, it’s a complicated matter.

It seems likely that SoundCloud intends to mature into a monetised platform and close the gap to providers like Spotify or YouTube, as suggested in this article:


#3

Spoke with someone at the PRS yesterday.

There’s been some uninformed talk here about, for instance, producing RF music and somehow thinking that the PRS (don’t know about other PROs) will allow any music sold through an RF site, to then be licensed with the PRS so that further backend royalties can be collected. The PRS takes a really dim view of this currently. So much so that it’s possible at the moment that they could even rescind your personal PRS licence with them if that is what starts to take place and they find out out about it.
The PRS does NOT like RF music in any way, shape or form. It goes against their fundamentals as a collection agency.

It regards things like Spotify and Soundcloud as far as I can tell, basically as a form of RF music, which it is. I suspect they will win the legal case against Soundcloud.

Personally, the biggest problem I have with Soundcloud is theft.


#4

Are you saying it is unwise to register royalty free music with PRS? Or selling non-pro music on Royalty Free markets? Because I’m fine with the former. But when It comes to SoundCloud - I don’t get it. The music is on this service on my behalf, I myself uploaded it there to have a showcase of what I produce available in any part of the world where there’s Internet. Should I not upload music to SoundCloud and use a private ftp server instead? Also, I can’t see any info on the interaction of PROs and AdRev - are those organizations self-excluding or I can add PRO music to AdRev and vice versa?


#5

you should not be registering anything you sell in royalty-free markets with any organization that collects royalties (PRS, ASCAP, BMI, etc.). kind of defeats the whole “royalty-free” purpose. anything that is RF on soundcloud will be unaffected - this is PRS going after them for the catalogs they represent. adrev doesn’t care if the stuff is PRO or not.


#6

Most RF sites sell PRO-registered music as “royalty-free” does not mean free from broadcast royalties. Not the same thing.


#7

Yeah, but will a PRO care about AdRev? Or ad revenue and public performance royalties are two separate things and therefore there’s no interference?


#8

technically that is correct, but in envato’s case it seems they have been treating the term to imply both. Anyway, point is Envato still doesn’t allow PRO-registered music (hopefully this changes) and I’m assuming the OP is talking about this matter re: this site.


#9

Some publishers (not PROs) quietly collect ad revenue and don’t pass it on (when they should) so good to be generally aware. Not sure PRS’s policy, but again, if you don’t register the stuff you’re putting here with them it’s not an issue.


#10

And in the meantime, SoundCloud is taking down some of my remixes which were legally worked on and legally uploaded for remix competitions co-organized by the very company (Sony) that now wants them to be removed. In other words, Sony co-organizes a remix competition to promote their artist, hundreds of people take part, all of them upload their stuff to SoundCloud (according to contest rules!) and once the promotion time is over after certain period of time they ask SC to take all of the remixes down because - well - they ‘don’t want to have them there any more’. And then the SoundCloud users must defend themselves and prove that yes indeed they didn’t steal anything, didn’t infringe copyrights, just followed the rules. I’m having a lot of ‘fun’ because of this recently. :frowning:


#11

LYRA2h
And in the meantime, SoundCloud is taking down some of my remixes which were legally worked on and legally uploaded for remix competitions co-organized by the very company (Sony) that now wants them to be removed. In other words, Sony co-organizes a remix competition to promote their artist, hundreds of people take part, all of them upload their stuff to SoundCloud (according to contest rules!) and once the promotion time is over after certain period of time they ask SC to take all of the remixes down because - well - they ‘don’t want to have them there any more’. And then the SoundCloud users must defend themselves and prove that yes indeed they didn’t steal anything, didn’t infringe copyrights, just followed the rules. I’m having a lot of ‘fun’ because of this recently. frowning

Get used to it. Soundcloud atm represents the wild west element of the internet. Abuse is an issue. Good for the PRS and their actions. At least they gave them nearly 5 years before they lost their patience.


#12

TheWhiteElephant, so let’s say you promote my product (of which you are a fan), and you do that to the best of your abilities. Later on, however, I’ll basically tell you that you’re a thief and then I punish you for what you haven’t stolen. + do the same thing with approx. 400 other people just like you. And then if you protest, I should tell you “Get used to it”… ?
Well, good luck with that kind of Sony-label-corporate attitude, then :-).
SoudCloud attitudes or policies weren’t my point. With regards to that, I agree that they should sort out their copyright stuff (as far as I’m aware they are doing it, btw) and if they don’t, then PRS action is certainly fine with me. I will never ‘get used’ to be labeled as criminal if I’m not one, though… sorry to disappoint you :smile:


#13

When Soundcloud started, they started with the best of intentions. And probably still do.

Unfortunately there is now a very large group of people of a particular age group/and or/political bent, that feel everything on this planet should be free.

I do not care one iota about your personal problems with Soundcloud/Sony. Not in the slightest. I am commenting in this thread about the PRS position and not for one nano second do I care about what Sony either do, or do not do. Your issues are incidental and have nothing whatsoever to do with the PRS decision in any direct way.


#14

Cool, so If you don’t care about whatever I wrote, why did you hit that reply button and comment on it in the first place, then?
Anyway, peace. :wink: