With the declaration of a state of sanitary emergency in the country, derived from the Covid-19 Pandemic, an economic crisis occurred in different sectors from which not even the entertainment industry escaped, particularly large, medium and small format, or establishments open to the public, directly affecting businessmen, organizers and artists who were forced to suspend or cancel live events already scheduled in order to avoid crowds and thereby mitigate the expansion of the virus.
In this situation we have two sides of the coin affected by the pandemic, on the one hand the visible faces of the show such as the performers who are in charge of expressing or communicating the works to the public, and on the other hand the authors, composers and publishers musicals that, being owners or owners of the executed musical works, suffer the decrease or disappearance of their patrimonial rights or royalties due to the suspension of live events or the closure of discotheques, bars or restaurants; It is worth clarifying, royalties that are managed, collected and distributed in Colombia by the Society of Authors and Composers of Colombia – SAYCO, which enjoys the powers granted by the holders of copyright, national and foreign for its administration.
In this unpromising scenario for the prompt recovery of the industry, both event organizers and artists have had to adapt to continue generating income, migrating to different private platforms that allow them to continue with the show.
Now, what role do authors, composers and music publishers play in virtual events promoted by artists and producers? In this regard, it is important to understand that they are the legitimate owners of the works to be communicated publicly, and therefore by virtue of protection granted by national and international regulations such as the Berne Convention, Andean Decision 351 or Law 23 of 1982, they are the ones who can authorize or prohibit the use of their works in these events, being SAYCO who, in development of the representation mandates granted , you can issue the respective licenses of use required for your communication.
In view of all the above, the Society of Authors and Composers of Colombia – SAYCO, implemented a rate manual that will allow determining the framework of economic negotiation in recognition of the right holders, which has caused a stir in different social networks that due to ignorance of the matter, they have considered the act of SAYCO to be abusive, without stopping to observe the different edges that this rate manual contains.
In this order of ideas, it is important to remember that SAYCO did not start its copyright management with the issuance of this manual or as a result of the pandemic, the efforts for these uses have been carried out since September 29, 2005, as It can be seen in the Digital Rights Manual published on its website, which is freely available. Thus, since 2014 it has been linked to the Ibero-American Copyright Organization (LATINAUTOR), in which all the Collective Management Societies of copyright in Latin America converge, which is responsible for managing and licensing uses of law author in large digital platforms such as, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Spotify, Deezer, Claro Music, among others.
In this order of ideas, the management of copyright advanced by SAYCO on digital platforms is not new either in Colombia or in the rest of the world. Now, the spread of the Covid-19 virus if it is new, and has led all sectors of the economy to reinvent itself along with the strategies of interaction with the market, of which copyright is not alien, in such a way that adaptation to new circumstances has led us to go from live events, in which it was shared with a large number of people, to enjoy our authors, composers and artists through a screen via streaming, without the legitimate rights of authors and composers may be compromised or affected.
This is part of the resilience in the midst of the crisis and the new rates show nothing but adaptation to change in the entertainment industry.
With all of the above and in order to clarify the various statements about the new ‘Virtual Events Rate Manual’ issued and published by the Society of Authors and Composers of Colombia – SAYCO, it is appropriate to make the following points:
1. As expressed in the aforementioned Rate Manual, the rates contemplated will not apply to virtual events (streaming – live) that are carried out through the digital platforms licensed by the LatinAutor Organization, which correspond to: Facebook, Instagram , Youtube, among others.
2. The rates will only apply to events that are carried out through our own platforms or those of third parties that are not covered by a license for use by LatinAutor.
3. The rates are not fixed or of unified application, each event according to its particularities will cancel a different rate that will be arranged.
4. The factors to determine the rate to apply will be two: (i) charge or not for access to the virtual event and (ii) intensity of the use of musical works.
5. The intensity of use of musical works determines the percentage of the rate to be applied, which is divided into four categories as follows: (i) essential, (ii) necessary, (iii) environmental (iv) incidental.
6. The virtual events with ticket collection will have as a settlement basis the income obtained from the sale of pins, codes or similar that allow the enjoyment of the virtual event.
7. The virtual events without ticket collection will have the maximum number of views as the basis for settlement and will be canceled on a percentage of the current minimum monthly salary for fractions of 500 views for individuals and 1000 views for public entities.
8. The rates set forth in the mentioned Manual will always be agreed upon.
The decision to generate a rate manual for virtual events is due to the current economic circumstances derived from the Covid-19 Pandemic, which has led to the cancellation or suspension of live public shows, migrating to digital platforms. With this migration, the copyright on musical works that are performed in this type of event still rests on their owners, who enjoy the exclusive right to authorize their public communication through the Society of Authors and Composers of Colombia – SAYCO, such as President of national and international authors, composers and music publishers.
Finally, the different users of music are reminded that each musical work has one or more holders, who live and compensate their intellectual work for the recognition of their rights and the fair payment for the use of their works.
Other questions may be resolved by the SAYCO Digital Rights Department, with which they can communicate at email email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org. Likewise, the general public is invited to consult the Tariff Manual for Virtual Events through the SAYCO website through the link http://sayco.org/tarifas/
SUPPORT FOR COPYRIGHT IN COLOMBIA
Rafael Manjarres: Vice President of Sayco- Colombian Composer
In my opinion, I believe that there is disinformation in the diametral media, I feel that there are perverse agents who do the exercise of misinforming the media.
Sayco approved in a Board of Directors (a month ago), the easing of rates and full authorization was granted to the General Manager Dr. César Ahumada, in that regard; In itself, the rates must be agreed and in fact they are, and in view of the particular circumstance of crisis that exists, the easing was done in a more emphatic and concrete way, of course, it must also be clear that subject to the crisis is not only the shopkeepers, the photographers, the businessmen, the doctors, the engineers; the composers are also in the same crisis, that is, the flexibility of the rates according to the mandate given to Dr. Ahumada, must be reasonable and responsible since, according to the circumstances, Sayco has a financial burden that corresponds to the support it gives to its more than 9,000 members.
I feel that every time a topic related to copyright is offered, they have a fuss that has no reason to be, effectively for the issue of collecting copyright for concepts of now virtual shows (digital payment ), Sayco established an expedited mechanism for that payment; is clear; Those who use virtual music, face-to-face, or however you want to use it, must pay the copyright to its creator and Sayco is the company that is legally authorized to make that collection.
We as a society see with great eyes the concern that Doctor Iván Duque has shown with his orange economy program and we believe that there is a very good intention; We have made available to you as a society that for 70 years knows the collective and individual socioeconomic reality of Colombian composers, we have made available the information we have in this regard, the database, so that this is a good input that Let there be no vices that misdirect that very good intention of the National Government and end up in the head of those who are not those benefits, that is, that in the support coverage that the Government is proposing are all those who should be.
It is important to be clear that the collection that Sayco makes is not illegal and is not an invention, this corresponds to a legal activity established for some gentlemen who make songs and who collect their copyright through Sayco, as well as the transporter charges for your transportation, as the doctor charges your consultations; I feel that there is a very particular way of evaluating everything that has to do with copyright, and sometimes it hurts me as a composer to see a double standard since you meet personalities and praise them, they show you love and recognition of what you do as an author, they sing the songs with us and yet when you offer to say something clear, you feel ambiguity, a whiff of animosity as if it is not legal that the one who makes the seat is paid to make the seat and the one who builds in a jar will be paid to build the jar and those of us who make songs will be paid to make songs; it must be said that the proof that Sayco is not being arbitrary and that he has been supportive, is that he recently met with the vast majority of the country’s important show businessmen and many of the actors that take part in public shows, and a start was made to agree on tariffs.
Cesar Ahumada – General Manager of Sayco
In this era of social isolation, music has been the best companion, with it we experience happiness, sadness, love affairs, disappointments, duels, among other types of feelings that its lyrics transmit to us; As Manager Sayco, it is very sad that Copyright is not valued in our country as it is in other countries of the world, where art is Precious and sacred.
The culture of non-payment of Copyright in Colombia generates constant attacks and unfounded lies that try to discredit the Society that represented and misinform citizens in general through social networks and some media in a way irresponsible. I will continue with the task entrusted to me by more than nine thousand members, which is to ensure the economic rights of their works.
Music is the most important input for human beings because the song you listen to, sing or dance has a composer.
Hernan Urbina- Colombian Composer
It has always been difficult to collect in Colombia, with justice, the economic rights for the use of our creations, but it is no less true that SAYCO has admirably improved, in recent years, the fight that on behalf of the authors and composers it is waging against those They believe they have the power to do business and make a profit without acknowledging the royalties, personal effort and collective well-being generated by the workers of this liberal profession that constitutes making music.
As a member of SAYCO, I have spent 37 years learning about hoaxes and unspeakable abuses, perpetrated by individuals and companies so as not to pay the economic right to exploit our musical works, but today I have met what could be the most cynical of all.
I have heard of entrepreneurs and promoters of virtual private events trying to present the current Pandemic by Covid-19 as a calamity that would affect them in the main, but they are waiting for it not to pay the copyright for using musical works in virtual shows .
They say it cynically, with full awareness of the tragedy of the Colombian composers, who have stopped receiving fees for the impossibility of interpreting their songs in public, but also because of the decrease in the use of their works in thousands of restaurants and closed establishments, their copyright royalties will be significantly reduced.
Those who try to profit from the exploitation of the works of our composers by digital means, without paying the legitimate fee, deserve the contempt of the responsible and solidary society, which with pain already observes the migration of many Colombians, many authors and composers, to the worse fringes of poverty due to the financial fatality that the current pandemic has brought.
Colombians: No to indolent and illegal trade with our works.
Jean Carlos Centeno – Colombo-Venezuelan composer and performer
As a pioneer of virtual events with access charges, on May 15, I held the concert called Jean Carlos centeno so it sounds in your heart, for this reason, in respect of copyright, ask Sayco for a license in the terms of the rates manual I invite you to acquire your use licenses for the benefit of the authors and composers of the country in this crisis that we are facing. I did this event thinking not only for my own benefit of what my livelihood could do, I did it thinking of the livelihood of my coworkers who are the musicians, the members of the group who also have their needs, their commitments, their debts ; I think it does not hurt to take them into account because they are our fighting partners every weekend and to think that we do not know when we can hold a new online concert like the one mentioned.
Copyright in Colombia must be respected both for new authors and composers, and for old ones; This is not only a benefit for the performer, it is a benefit for composers. I asked Sayco for the above and I hope it will be taken in the best way, bearing in mind that we are a country that is also suffering from what is happening worldwide.
Through this message I want to express my good faith and my good intention and ask you to please request Sayco the authorizations corresponding to the payment of copyright that everyone, even if we do not sleep in the same bed and do not live under the same roof We teach the world that we are one family, that Colombia is one from the tip of one border to the other and that we are united in this pandemic.