Copyright summit – second morning

And we’re off…

First up:

Nikesh Arora, President for European, Middle East and Africa, Google(UK)

with a keynote speech – The Value of Content in the 21st Century.

Will there be blood on the carpet? After the reception Lawrence Lessig got yesterday this must be about to get ugly? The answer is a resounding no! To make matters even more boring, Nikesh proceeds to explain what the Internet is and bring out the dreaded “Long Tail”. Waste of time. Nothing to see here. Move on. (Update 28/3/08– official video from CISAC)

Next up is a panel discussion – Understanding Mobile and Online Licensing Systems – with:

Ventura Barba, Director Legal & Business Affairs, Yahoo! Music International (Spain)
Eduardo Bautista, Chairman of Board of Directors, SGAE (Spain)
David M. Israelite, President & CEO, National Music Publishers’ Association NMPA (USA)
Gerhard Pfennig, General Manager, BILD-KUNST (Germany)
Steve Porter, Chief Executive, MCPS-PRS Alliance (UK)
Cees Vervoord, Chief Executive Officer, buma/stemra (Netherlands)
Alison Wenham, Chair, Worldwide Independent Network WIN (UK)
Alain Strowel, Professor, Facultés universitaires Saint-Louis and University of Liège (Belgium) – Moderator

Alison Wenham makes a bright start with talk of a online global licence. At last, someone who understands what’s required for licensing online content. Steve Porter brings more joy by saying how depressed he has been by the attitude displayed and the failure to grasp the nettle of having people bypass the traditional route to access content. Then it all falls apart. Eduardo Bautista proceeds to say that what’s required is for everybody to do nothing. Stick together and all will right itself. Madness – but the room erupts with joy and he gets a huge applause. I fear Steve Porter may slit his wrists and Alison can take her noble ideas and peddle them on the sidewalk, there is obviously no takers here. David Israelite takes the opportunity to put the boot into Lawrence Lessig again, which gets more applause, but yet strangely doesn’t offer a constructive alternative. The discussion fails completely to talk about understanding mobile and online licensing systems. Another wasted opportunity. (Update 28/3/08 – official video from CISAC)

Next panel discussion is – New Revenue Streams… Where’s the money? – with:

Larry Kenswil, President – Universal Music Group – eLabs (USA)
Bob Kohn, Chairman & CEO, RoyaltyShare (USA)
Joe Mohen, Chairman & Founder, SpiralFrog (USA)
Tim Renner, Founder & Managing Director, Motor FM (Germany)
Satoshi Watanabe, Manager of International Relations Department, JASRAC (Japan)
Paul Brindley, Managing Director, MusicAlly (UK) – Moderator

Paul Brindley starts it off saying he’s of the “glass half empty” persuasion and challenges the panel to cheer him up. Statoshi Watanabe doesn’t. Larry Kenswil is refreshingly frank and gives a very bleak view for the future of the CD as a format. This is definitely not cheering Paul up. Bob Kohn feels optimistic. Hope here for Paul. Alas no, as Bob launches into a sales pitch for RoyaltyShare. Then a surreal turn of events. Joe Mohen is hugely optimistic – but wait – Paul wants to know if he has fired all his marketing staff and not taken up a second round of VC funding. Cue much embarrassment as Paul obviously has an axe to grind and choose to do it in front of the summit audience. At this stage Joe has every right to just leave the panel, as this is an ambush – but to his credit he deals with the insanity from Paul and goes on to explain how SpiralFrog has gone about it’s business to get legitimate access to content. It sounds like a nightmare, with huge amounts of time and money being poured into trying to clear rights for North America. Their revenue stream will be ad based. No other revenue stream options are discussed. Guess no one has figured out the new bit yet. (Update 28/3/08 – official video from CISAC)

All my postings on The Copyright Summit

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