The EU has just helped the economic situation of musicians by extending the current copyright protection laws from 50 to 70 years. During the vote, 17 voted in favor of the extension out of the 27 member states; Belgium, the Czech Republic, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Sweden voted against; Austria and Estonia abstained.
The new ruling will bring the rights of performers closer to those of authors with copyright laws. An author’s copyright expires 70 years after the author’s death.
When the issue first came before the EU, they tried to create similar terms to those in the United States. In the US, the copyright terms last for 95 years from the date of release and until 2049 at the earliest.
Impala reacted to the EU change by saying, “At a time when certain interests seek to weaken copyright for their own purposes, this sends a vital message that the right of creators to earn a living is taken seriously by the EU.”
Bjorn Ulvaeus Voices Opinion
Abba member Bjorn Ulvaeus was also very pleased with the economic ruling. One issue that bands have had is that their songs can be used for commercial purposes like advertisements once they no longer have ownership over them. With the new ruling, the bands will retain their ownership for twenty years longer.
Bjorn told the BBC that, “The thousands of lesser-known musicians around Europe who are enriching our life and culture can get the fair reward in return for their work that they deserve.”