In its latest endeavor to embrace the independent labels sector, the British Phonographic Industry is lobbying online music services to give priority to indie releases.

In its latest endeavor to embrace the independent labels sector, the British Phonographic Industry is lobbying online music services to give priority to indie releases.

BPI chairman Peter Jamieson says the campaign is intended to help indies place their repertoire on legitimate online services. "With downloads shortly to be eligible for the singles chart, this is a key commercial issue on which the BPI is committed to assisting its members," Jamieson explains. "We want to ensure that independent repertoire is as successful in the download world as it is the physical world."

The BPI last month changed its subscription model in a move to encourage greater membership among indies.

To underline this new approach, the trade group is launching six seminars focused on helping its independent label members make the most of opportunities in digital distribution. The "Getting Your Music Online" sessions will take place at the BPI's offices in London from February to April. The seminars will feature speakers from iTunes, Loudeye, Napster and the Orchard.

Britain's first download chart launched Sept. 1, 2004, by the Official U.K. Co., a joint venture of the BPI and British retail association BARD. No date has been announced for the inclusion of download sales data in the national singles chart.