The 2008 edition of the Amsterdam Dance Event has exceeded organizer expectations so far with 800 delegates registering on Oct. 22 and a further 700 the following day, the first full day of the dance music business conference and club festival.

The total of 1,500 arrivals so far compares favorably with the total of 1,300 at the same point last year. All 2,000 registered entries for the event, which runs until Oct. 25, were sold before the start, so the event's hub, the Felix Meritis centre, and the new subsidiary venue in the nearby Dylan Hotel, will be even busier than they have been already.

The daytime program featured nine panels covering a range of hot button topics including ecological responsibility ("The Green Issue"), the future of DJ-ing ("The Evolving DJ Culture") and synchronization income ("Sound Moves").

The panels kicked off with New York DJ Francois K hosting a session of "The World According To..." His argument on the irrelevance of extant copyright laws resonated with the ADE audience and touched on fundamental issues for the club biz.

"The nature of modern DJ work is that we'll be using unreleased tracks, mixed with samples to create new tracks," he said. "And what has yet to be recognized by copyright law and copyright owners is that these sounds, which were once an end unto themselves, are now one of several ingredients that go towards creating something new. But clearing all those elements is expensive, time consuming and quite often impossible."

Fellow panellist DJ Sander Kleinenberg agreed. "The rules were developed in a time when only physical formats existed but that is no longer the case,” he said. “Creativity is effectively being criminalized and the potentially lucrative market in live recordings of DJ sets is being strangled.”

In the "Take A Walk On The Live Side" discussion, Ivan Milivojev, organizer of the EXIT Festival in Serbia, admitted that a lot of DJs are basically geeks who have found themselves on stage in front of huge crowds. "For sure they need to learn some stagecraft and inject a bit of rock and roll attitude into their sets," he said. "A few like Armin van Buuren do make a real effort with staging but most DJs are only capable of the odd 'arms aloft' gesture which frankly is not enough."

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