French Biz, ISPs Sign Charter

French music industry organizations and representatives from the online sector yesterday (July 28) signed a charter regulating music online delivery and respecting intellectual property (IP) rights.

French music industry organizations and representatives from the online sector yesterday (July 28) signed a charter regulating music online delivery and respecting intellectual property (IP) rights.

Nicolas Sarkozy, the French minister of economy, finance and industry, and his colleagues from culture and communication Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres and industry Patrick Devedjian, had pressed for the charter.

According to the document, labels have agreed to develop the amount of legal repertoire available for online distribution from 300,000 to 600,000 titles by the end of the year; both parties will promote legal services to consumers and ISPs will undertake to respect IP rights.

Label's bodies SNEP and UPFI, collecting societies Sacem, SCPP and SPPF, publishers association CSDEM, and retail trade group SDSD were among the music industry organizations which signed the charter.

ISPs and internet service providers were represented by trade body AFA. Internet companies and mobile operators such as Wanadoo, SFR-Cegetel, Noos, and Free also signed the charter.

SNEP welcomed the charter, saying it "created the conditions for a long term cooperation between the music industry and Internet access providers.""

Donnedieu de Vabres describes the move as "a starting point, that of a new partnership between authors, producers, online distributors and Internet access providers." He added that the purpose of the charter was to promote legal online music distribution and fight piracy.

The music industry had asked for filtering measures, allowing parents to prevent their children from accessing specific sites. However, Donnedieu de Vabres said the issue was technically complex and decided to appoint two experts to evaluate the viability of such a system.

He said he expected other creative industries such as the film sector to adhere to a similar charter with ISPs.
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