across the music
The landscape for music continues to evolve at a breakneck speed, bringing new ways to deliver, experience and engage with music content – and with more on the horizon. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and increasingly immersive technologies are already affecting us all profoundly, and music is no exception.
While human artistry will always be at the heart of great music, new AI tools offer music great benefits. Some, for example, support artist discovery, others enhance audience identification. Still others enable fans to engage with artists in new ways and some aid in the creative process.
That’s why robust copyright rules and regulations remain a critical tool to protect and foster creativity – and the key enabler of effective licensing. The pace of innovation may also mean that other forms of protection and intellectual property – from personality rights to unfair competition rules – need to be strengthened, in order to protect artists and the integrity of the marketplace.
The fundamental policy principles that underpin IFPI’s work – to secure a framework that supports a heathy, sustainable, global music industry for the future – include:
1. Continue to value human artistry
The artist must remain at the centre of all that we do. Record companies constantly explore new technologies and innovations, working with artists to develop and use new tools to advance the creative process. This includes the use of artificial intelligence which offers new innovative tools to support artists, from systems that assist in the creative process to those that help with production. However, AI is not and will never be a substitute for human artistry, nor should developers of AI models be allowed to use artists’ recordings without authorisations, whether to train their models or to generate new content.
Furthermore, developers of AI models should be required to keep records of the content of others that they ingest and disclose the recordings used in the development of the models.
2. Recognise music’s value
Music has both cultural and economic value, and public policies should ensure that that value is fully recognised by all players in the marketplace. It means, among other things, that online operators – including those operating virtual metaverse platforms or content sharing networks running on web3 technology – must negotiate licences for the music they make available on their services.
Policymakers increasingly understand the value of exclusive rights and robust and clear copyright liability rules, offline as well as online. Exclusive rights and clear liability rules are necessary for rightholders to benefit fairly from their rights.
3. Support music’s competitive marketplace
The music market today is highly competitive, and artists have more choice than ever before in how they create, record, and share their music with fans worldwide. Those who choose to partner with a record label do so to benefit from a label’s resources, experience and expertise, while also drawing on their creative input, global networks, and marketing power. Through these partnerships, artists develop new creative opportunities that can lead to further success.
The increasingly competitive environment has directly benefited artists, with an IFPI study showing that record companies’ payments to their artists have increased by 96% between 2016 and 2021.
Since artists’ incomes come from multiple sources, policymakers should support a competitive marketplace where artists and their commercial partners are free to develop new partnerships, to the benefit of all parties and without unnecessary regulatory interference.
4. Protect creators’ content
To make copyright systems truly functional and to protect rightholders’ repertoire at all times and in every environment, effective enforcement measures and procedures are required. Governments should actively address the most extreme infringements through criminal and administrative actions.
That requires the empowerment of competent authorities to order online intermediaries to block access to infringing and otherwise fraudulent services, following the example of a growing number of countries from India to Latin America and the EU.
Governments should also require that where online hosting providers benefit from liability privileges (also known as ‘safe harbours’) they take credible and effective measures to keep infringing music off their services, not least once they have been notified of such infringing content.
Furthermore, all intermediaries should take steps to ensure they have accurate identifying information about their business customers and make that information available to right holders and law enforcement agencies who need it for the legitimate purpose of protecting their intellectual property rights.