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Government Ensures Minimum Standards For All Collecting Societies

New regulations for collecting societies will offer greater clarity for people using copyrighted works in their business

Published on 07 April 2014

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by Viscount Younger of Leckie


London, England

Pubs, bars and shops that require a licence to play music or schools that photocopy copyright material are going to find to find their legal rights easier to understand as changes to the law came into force on 6 April 2014.

Last year UK collecting societies collected a total of £1bn in licence fees for their members. Following discussions with government, many collecting societies have already put in place their own Codes of Practice which set out minimum standards of transparency and behaviour, as well as establishing formal complaints procedures.

The new law includes powers that will make sure all collecting societies comply with these minimum standards.

Intellectual Property Minister, Lord Younger, said:

"Any efforts that support self-regulation should be welcomed and I am pleased to see the progress that collecting societies have made in agreeing minimum standards and setting their own Codes of Practice. The additional backstop power that has come into force today is there to make sure those standards are met and to give businesses the certainty and clarity they need."

Kevin Fitzgerald, Chair of the British Copyright Council (BCC) Working Group on Principle of Good Practice said:

"On behalf of the BCC Working Group, I warmly welcome the announcement that the Government’s Regulations on Codes of Practice for collecting societies have now become law. I am sure that the positive and collaborative approach taken by the industry has helped to bring about this smooth conclusion to the legislative process. The minimum standards already adopted by collecting societies and now underpinned by law, are an important step that will strengthen our industry. Good governance is good news for collecting societies and for the economy as a whole."

Alexander Jackman, Head of Policy at the Forum of Private Business (FPB) commented:

"The Forum of Private Business is delighted that the regulations on Codes of Practice for collecting societies have been approved by parliament. FPB members regularly interact with collecting societies for their licensing requirements and it is reassuring to know that there are minimum standards in place, and to have clarity around what we can expect."

The government has published legal guidance on the new regulations for collecting societies and licensees.

For more information about this press release visit https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-ensures-minimum-standards-for-all-collecting-societies



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Posted 2014-04-07 14:09:00