New Law Proposal in Portugal

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Filipe Cruz

May 3, 2011, 4:07:33 PM5/3/11
to P2PU-funding
Some folks during the workshop today wanted some more info about the
Portuguese draft law proposal that is becoming controversial for
supposedly turning cc licences illegal.

A friend of mine recently transcribed the document that was
distributed at the debate of couple days ago.
You can pass it through google translate, it translates it
acceptably. :)

Most interesting part is article 5, regarding (Inalienability and non-
"The fair compensation of authors and artists, performers, is
indivisible and inalienable, and void any clause in any contract."

Meaning that you can't, as an artist, choose not to be part of their
taxing system, nor put out work under a license that allows free use.

I don't even know how this can even be enforced in practical terms but
i guess their reasoning is that this will give grounds for SPA to
charge taxes in everything and everywhere regardless if the device (or
location) is only playing copyleft music. It's curious to note that
some comercial establishments, indie artists and music promoters have
been doing that (play only non copyrighted music, claim to handle the
cachet themselfs) to avoid the heavy taxation that has been trying to
be extorted out of them. Quite a few nightclubs were closed out of
business for raids on cdrs, gigs ruined with physical confrontations
with ASAE fiscals, promoters having to cancel gigs to avoid paying
extort money. And if you want to get your money back as an author you
need to register with SPA to claim it. And SPA supposedly handles all
international traffic with agreements with other instituitions (RIAA,
GEMA, SGAE, etc), which they actually don't. There are no open records
of where the money goes and everyone listed on SPA has to pay to be a
member, pay to have published material, and never gets any money back.
Big case of publically known (atleast with people involved in the
portuguese music industry) of institutionalized corruption in

I guess they believe this law reform will be accepted by artists with
the promises of more transparency in the SPA. Which btw is a private
association and has no constituional ground to represent any and all
artists. Then again, no one artist is voting for this, just
politicians debating it pressured by music industry lobbies. :)

Any ideas for a project proposal to overture or expose this ongoing
corruption scenario? :D Would be cute to submit it somewhere
international. :) Maybe related to open data. :) No chance of a
snowball in hell to get it approved for funding anywhere in Portugal
in my belief, otherwsie it would be cute to submit it to dgartes :D

Jonas Öberg

May 3, 2011, 4:16:10 PM5/3/11

Filipe, in Iceland they also have a system whereby the collecting agency collect also for non-members. It's a controversial issue but we've had some luck there getting into constructive dialogues with them. Our approach is to be non-confrontational and instead be "nice". In our latest meeting we connected them with the collecting society in Denmark which does allow some cc licenses.

It could imagine one approach could be to organise a European seminar on cc and collecting societies to which we could invite participants from each. The problem there might not be the money, but getting them to come. We do have some good contacts hete though, so its not entirely impossible that it could be done.


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