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Monday 11 November 2013

Copyright and Duration of Rights in Performances Regulations 2013 – Who are the real winners?

The Copyright and Duration of Rights in Performances Regulations 2013 (the “Regulations”) came into effect on 1 November 2013.

The Regulations extend the term of copyright protection for sound recordings from 50 years to 70 years (which runs from the date on which the sound recording is published/made available to the public), and the term of protection for performer’s rights in a sound recording from 50 years to 70 years (which runs from the date of release).

The 20 year extension will apply to all sound recordings released from 1 January 1963. This is good news for those artists who are still alive today and whose copyright protection was due to expire in 2013 or 2014 (a notable example is the Beatles’ first number one single, ‘Please Please Me); their rights will now be protected until at least 2033.

Many famous artists, most notably Cliff Richard, have been strongly in favour of an extended copyright term (indeed, the legislation has been dubbed “Cliff’s Law”).

But what does it mean for record labels?

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