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international news _ 6th March, 2006 _ JONTY SKRUFFF

Digital DJ Publishing Licenses: A Good Or Bad Idea?

Text by Jonty Skrufff (Skrufff.com)

UK Dance industry representative John Truelove is seeking feedback from DJs about the latest proposed digital DJ License which could mean all DJs are forced to pay 200 pounds a year for the privilege of burning MP3s, on top of the ?200 they're already now expected to pay for the PPL's recently introduced Digital License.

While the PPL scheme taxes DJs to raise funds for labels and performers, the new one, proposed by royalty collection organisation the MCPS/PRS, is intended to make money for composers.

"The gist of the proposal is that when a DJ transfers a track onto their computer or ipod to play out, they are making a copy, and therefore legally a payment is required to be made to the composers of that music. The idea is that the DJ pays a one-off annual fee of 200 pounds to cover up to 20,000 such transfers per year," said John.

"This would only apply to DJ's who play MP3's or other digital formats, it would not apply to anyone continuing to play CDs or vinyl."

John stressed that the MCPS/PRS, are 'open-minded and certainly open to a well-put argument and that's exactly what we need now' and called on DJs of all levels to email him urgently with their views.

"I hope they kick it into the long grass, though I think they feel they have to go through the consultation process now that the issue has been broached and that is why we all need to provide a substantive response," he told Skrufff.

To share your views on digital DJ licenses, please email John immediately at licensedebate@truelove.co.uk