Music Industry Groups Holding out Hope for Trump

Turns out, not everyone in the entertainment and music world is convinced the US president-elect will be bad for business.

The National Music Publishers’ Association, in an open letter to Donald Trump, call on him to protect fairness for America’s songwriters.

“Giant technology companies have had a stronghold in Washington under the Obama Administration,” according to the letter. “Google, which owns the largest music streaming company in the world—YouTube—enjoyed a well-documented, close relationship with the White House, in particular.”

As a result of these selective and close relationships is the “often hostile stance towards the creative community whose work has been systematically devalued by the very technology companies who rely on its product. Such companies recently wrote to you requesting support for the internet industry and its ‘innovation,’ however we implore you to keep in mind that innovation is the first casualty of a lack of incentive. Once the songwriters, producers and publishers behind the music cannot make a living, not only will they suffer, but so will all of the technology and entertainment industries they fuel.”

There’s also hope that the Trump administration might move forward with long-discussed efforts to overhaul copyright law.

“The hope among those clamoring for an overhaul of copyright law is that US Rep. Bob Goodlatte, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, will take up a reform bill in the coming months,” reports Nate Rau with “Record labels, songwriters, publishers and artists hope that music copyright reform means more favourable digital royalties and perhaps a first-ever performance royalty for artists when their songs are played on traditional airwaves.”

Trump never mentioned copyright reform or the Fair Play, Fair Pay Act, Rau notes, but there’s a hope that his “conservative economic views will equate to support for deregulating copyright laws that songwriters and publishers say are too onerous for their professions.”

Others, including the Future of Music Coalition and the Freedom of the Press Foundation, are less enthusiastic about the prospects for the future, but ultimately we’re all going to have to wait and see how things changes for musicians.

Amber Healy

I write about music policy and lawsuits because they're endlessly fascinating.

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