AIM Signs Blanket Licensing Deal with BBC

U.K. nonprofit trade organization the Association of Independent Music has negotiated a blanket licensing deal with the BBC, MusicWeek reports.

Effective immediately and retroactively, the agreement allows labels and BBC Worldwide to use the broadcaster's catalog of live sessions and recordings -- effective across TV, radio, and online platforms -- for licensing, streaming, downloads, physical audio and DVD releases (including compilations and anthologies), and TV sales without negotiating on a case-by-case basis.

“The new agreement now means that we have in place a commercial licensing framework with the BBC that is free from red tape, user-friendly, transparent and fair," said Alison Wenham, CEO of AIM, in a statement, " and which will allow AIM members to exploit both new and archive material across all physical and digital platforms.”

Added Bob Shennan, director of BBC Music, "The BBC is very proud of this deal which illustrates the BBC's commitment to working creatively with the music industry."

Meanwhile, a few months ago across the pond, online radio service Pandora was denied a blanket license including publishers that had withdrawn their digital rights, raising the questions of what happens to the music publishing industry in general if three publishers with nearly half the market share completely withdraw from BMI. Of the deal, one lawyer involved in music publishing said, "It has thrown the whole landscape into turmoil. It has created the potential for massive damages for services that play songs in violation of copyright law."

The American branch of AIM, A2IM, has also been having a good year so far: in January, it was reported that independent artists counted for 50% of Grammy wins, claiming the largest share since 2006. In June, A2IM will hold its annual Libby Awards. Nominees include Chvrches, William Onyeabor, and ATO and Glassnote Records.