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Copyright 3.0 

Copyright 3.0


20 March 2012

An alternative proposal for creators, businesses and consumers

The creative sector is at the heart of our society. Our music, art, film, TV and books are a part of everyday life. As the world has shifted from physical to digital, our creative industries have become a key component in the economy, driving growth and innovation. It is the sector young people want to work in.

There are three essential ingredients in success:

  1. Creators must be able to make their work available at a fair price.
  2. Consumers must be able to access great content easily, at a fair price.
  3. Businesses must be able to connect the two and provide services to creators and consumers.

Copyright 3.0 is about realising that vision. It is about connecting the creators, businesses and consumers seamlessly and creating a virtuous circle of economic, social and cultural activity. The glue in Copyright 3.0 is licensing which gives legal access for consumers, value for businesses in the supply chain and a fair reward for creators. Copyright – and the licensing system that underpins it in the UK – has already generated a wealth of consumer services in both analogue and digital media including downloads, on-demand, adverts, broadcast, exhibition and public use.

Licensing is growing. New business models are evolving. There is innovation at every stage, from the creation of digital works, through new licensing models to dynamic consumer offerings unthinkable a decade ago. We are global leaders, in what we create, in our growing digital businesses, in our licensing systems and in our legitimate services.

But all three components need to work together. Creators should not be forced to give away their work for free in order to subsidise other businesses through more exceptions. Consumers should not be directed to illegal services. Businesses should not be held back by unnecessary red tape. Yet, the Intellectual Property Office’s proposals fail to grasp the new opportunities available and deny a sustainable future for creators. Furthermore, their proposals are based upon the flimsiest “evidence” and their numbers don’t add up. They cannot be allowed to undermine a UK success story.

As an alternative, we propose Copyright 3.0. As licensing societies, we stand up for creators who, every day, produce thousands of new songs, recordings, books, films, newspapers and magazines. Copyright works. It is a significant chunk of income for British content creators and it brings money into the UK economy.

To realise the vision of Copyright 3.0, we support:

New licensing models. We are actively working on new licensing models for orphan works and extended collective licensing to increase accessibility of creative works.

Digital Copyright Exchange. We are investing in new systems and we support plans to create a simple-to-use online portal to facilitate licensing copyright works to businesses.

Business standards. We are transparent and accountable to our rightholder members and licensee customers and we are committed to voluntary codes of conduct to embed good business standards.

Consumer support. We provide full customer support to our licensees and we call on the IPO to step up to the role of explaining and promoting copyright and licensing.


  1. UK creative industries employ 1.3m people in the UK.
  2. UK creative industries contribute £60bn in GDP to the UK economy.
  3. UK creative industries are contributing to economic growth.
  4. UK creative industries are world leaders.
  5. UK creative industries have enabled digital services that are world leaders.
  6. UK creators produce new content – 1,400 newspapers, 1,000 recordings, 789 songs, 700 books, 87 hours of TV, 21 magazines, and ½ a film – every day.
  7. Creative content accounts for 73% of internet traffic, but just 8% of internet revenues.
  8. Collective licensing is a global business with the UK as a net export beneficiary.
  9. Nearly £1 billion is collected on behalf of rights holders by UK licensing societies, a significant and growing part of total creative revenues.
  10.  Collective licensing delivers ease of access and economic efficiencies to users and rightholders.


DCMS Annual Report 2011, DCMS, 2011.

Intellectual Property: Powerhouse for Innovation and Economic Growth, International Chamber of Commerce, 2011

Global Record Industry in Numbers 2011, IFPI, 2012.

BPI Yearbook 2011, BPI, 2011.

The Next Wave of Innovation: Five areas that could pull the UK clear of recession, Work Foundation, 2011. 

Music Collecting Societies: Evolution or Regulation?, PwC, 2005.

IFPI Digital Music Report 2011, IFPI, 2012.

Internet Value Chain Economics, AT Kearney, 2010.



  1. ‘…the IPO proposals will deliver £8bn GDP…’
    Wrong. The IPO numbers don’t add up. Some proposals lack any financial analysis. In others, the assumptions are flawed. More worryingly, the negative effects on creative industries have been ignored completely.
  2. ‘…exceptions deliver economic growth…’
    Wrong. Exceptions remove the core asset value of the creative work and so reduce incentives for creators for greater economic activity. An exception may benefit the public sector, but that has to be weighed against the loss of revenue to the creative sector of the economy. Far better for the Government to examine ways of modernising copyright licensing that incentivise digital businesses and creators together, so that consumers pay a fair price and creators receive a fair reward and incentive.
  3. ‘…copyright inhibits innovation…’
     ‘Wrong. Copyright licensing is growing and it is the way that creators are paid for the use of their work and consumers get access to content at a fair price. New licensing models are being developed all the time and licensing revenue is growing year on year, proof that it works.
  4. ‘…licensing is broken…’
    Wrong. Licensing is far from broken, it is growing. The vast majority of complaints against licensing are over price, which is either set by the Copyright Tribunal or negotiated with companies that are in many cases global Internet giants. In fact, new licensing models are being developed all the time and licensing revenue is growing year on year, proof that licensing works.
  5. ‘…copyright is red tape…’
    Wrong. Copyright is not regulation.  Copyright gives a creator ownership of their work and allows that work to be traded, just like any other property.  In fact, copyright is a flexible system which rewards the creator, incentivises investors and gives consumers access to content in a vibrant market.


  1. Digital Copyright Exchange
  2. Orphan works licensing
  3. Licensing models for access
  4. Voluntary codes of conduct backed by independent review
  5. Determined approach to tackling copyright theft

Signed on behalf of:

ACS  www.artistscollectingsociety.org

ALCS  www.alcs.co.uk

BECS www.equitycollecting.org.uk

CLA  www.cla.co.uk

DACS  www.dacs.org.uk

Directors UK  www.directors.uk.com

ERA  www.era.org.uk

MPLC www.mplc.org

NLA  www.nla.co.uk

PLS  www.pls.org.uk

PPL www.ppluk.com

PRS for Music www.prsformusic.com

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