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UN’s World Intellectual Property Organization Meets With Artistic Creators for First Time

For the first time, the United Nation's World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) invited artistic creators to speak at their 54th General Assembly last week.

For the first time, the United Nation’s World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) invited artistic creators to speak at their 54th General Assembly last week. 

Musicians, film directors, screenwriters and visual artists from around the world with the the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC) convened for a panel to discuss the major issues facing creators today. 

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“Against the background of profound change in the digital environment, there has never been a more suitable time to discuss how to ensure a sustainable future for authors and composers,” said WIPO director general Francis Gurry, to a room of ministers, ambassadors and diplomats. 

The subjects discussed included how to achieve a fair and sustainable creative ecosystem in the digital age, the importance of respecting creators’ rights and the urgent need for an open dialogue with all concerned parties. 

As well, a recent study published by CISAC on the importance of creativity as a source of economic development, was addressed, highlighting the great potential for the largest developing economics (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) to increase their creative industries’ contribution to job creation, sustainable business models and a healthy environment. 

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Those creators in attendance included electronic music composer and CISAC president Jean Michel Jarre from France; visual artist Hervé Di Rosa, also from France; Senegalese film director Angèle Diabang, Canadian songwriter Eddie Schwartz; Indian playwright, screenwriter and director Vinod Ranganath; and Israeli screenwriter and director Daphna Levin

“Creators and policymakers have an opportunity to work together to shape policies that reflect the intrinsic value of the creative industries, ensuring fair remuneration and, by extension, a sustainable and dynamic growth for each stakeholder of the creative chain, from the artist to the distributor,” said Jarre, discussing the necessity for a strong legal framework that will help build the creative economy. 

“We creators are pro-technology,” he continued. “We embrace it and welcome the wider access to culture that digital devices and services afford the public, and the opportunity to reach wider audiences that technology affords creators. But we need business models that make sense to all parties.”

CISAC is a non-governmental, not-for-profit organization that was founded in 1926. Its membership includes 230 authors’ societies in 120 countries and indirectly represents over 3 million creators across all geographies and artistic mediums. In 2012, royalties collected by CISAC’s member societies through their own national territories topped €7.8 billion ($9.9 billion).