Eagle Don "No Contest" Henley Wants Copyright Law Changed

Vistalite Black

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My enmity for Don "No Contest" Henley is eclipsed only to a slight degree by how much Shilohjim hates Dawes' father, but in the spirit of public service I thought I'd share his thoughts on preserving his frighteningly large wealth. I hear his testimony in Congress landed with the dull thud that's his signature.

From the Associated Press:
WASHINGTON (AP) — Eagles songwriter Don Henley urged Congress on Tuesday to “Take It to the Limit” to protect artists against online pirating, wading into a copyright fight pitting Hollywood and the recording industry against big tech platforms like Google’s YouTube.
The blockbuster hitmaker of the 1970s testified online from his home before a Senate Judiciary subcommittee weighing possible changes to a 1998 copyright law. The law allows holders of copyrighted material to formally ask parties they believe have taken their content without permission to remove it. The parties can dispute the claim. If they comply promptly with the request, there are no legal consequences. Otherwise, they may be subject to criminal penalties.
Henley said the law is weak and needs to be changed to make it more effective in stopping online piracy.
The so-called “notice and takedown” system under the copyright law is used by the movie and recording industries, entertainment software makers and book authors to pursue tech platforms, universities and other facilitators of file-sharing.
Henley called the copyright law “a relic of a MySpace era in a TikTok world.” With hundreds of millions of takedown notices sent, for every link taken down, “a dozen more pop up in its place,” he said. The system “still allows Big Tech to rake in revenue” after repeated copyright infringements, Henley said.
The copyright battle is being spotlighted in Congress at a time when U.S. tech giants are in an escalating feud with President Donald Trump and Republican lawmakers, who accuse platforms such as Twitter, Google and Facebook of suppressing conservative viewpoints. The dispute boiled over last week when Twitter attached warnings to some of Trump’s tweets, on mail-in voting and the use of force against people protesting the police killing of George Floyd. Trump, who is Twitter’s most prominent user, responded by issuing an executive order intended to chip away at the tech platforms’ legal shield for speech content they carry.
In the debate over online pirating, the subcommittee chairman, Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., made his leanings clear. He said creative industries have been “absolutely decimated” by the economic fallout of the pandemic as well as online pirating of copyrighted material that hasn’t slowed down.
“Piracy has become easier and faster and much, much more common,” Tillis said. “The current system is failing and it’s failing badly.”
He confided that the first live music performance he saw, when he lived in Nashville, was the Eagles. The rock group, with Henley as singer, drummer and songwriter, produced some of the best-selling albums of all time in the 1970s.
The other senators who attended the hearing, Democrats Chris Coons of Delaware and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, expressed support for changes to update the copyright law.
Copyright holders maintain that some network operators have manipulated internet-provider addresses in a way to make other networks appear responsible for the file-sharing. Entertainment industries have been pushing tech platforms to do more themselves to police content that violates copyright.
On the other side, users of the content have accused copyright holders of alleging infringement where it doesn’t exist. Internet companies say they have worked actively with the creative industries to block access to illegal content and protect the copyrights.

 

eigentone

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So… what's the problem in re-evaluating this 22 year old law? Don doesn't need the money but smaller artists do. Based on the information presented, he did not recommend specific changes. Do you believe there is no way this could be a change for the better? When you go to YouTube to listen to a song or watch a video of a song, does Google deserve the revenue more than the recording artists and songwriters/publishers?
 

ARGuy

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So… what's the problem in re-evaluating this 22 year old law? Don doesn't need the money but smaller artists do. Based on the information presented, he did not recommend specific changes. Do you believe there is no way this could be a change for the better? When you go to YouTube to listen to a song or watch a video of a song, does Google deserve the revenue more than the recording artists and songwriters/publishers?
You bring up some great questions, but it concerns me when someone says that "(fill-in-the-blanks) doesn't need the money". Who gets to decide that? I'm probably reading something into what you say that really isn't there, but I just wanted to put that out there.
 

Vistalite Black

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So… what's the problem in re-evaluating this 22 year old law? Don doesn't need the money but smaller artists do. Based on the information presented, he did not recommend specific changes. Do you believe there is no way this could be a change for the better? When you go to YouTube to listen to a song or watch a video of a song, does Google deserve the revenue more than the recording artists and songwriters/publishers?
I’m just surprised the people seeking reform chose as their spokesman a guy who pleaded “no contest” to having a naked 16-year-old at his house, then wrote a hit song whining about the media coverage about his arrest.
 

troutstudio

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Don Henley is one the finest singing/songwriting drummers ever. He's done more for drummers who create music than most, just being Don Henley. Maybe he's using his considerable standing to help others try to make a living out of writing and performing music. I welcome it and I hope that his testimony helps. As someone who has sold music in the 80's, 90's and now - I can testify what everyone in the business already knows. The current system is an absolute disgrace. Why should the owner of Spotify be worth millions when they refuse to increase streaming rates at all? Why should David Crosby not be able to live on his royalties? Sooner or later the world will work out that art should be paid for. If Don Henley adds his voice to all the people complaining about it, great.
 

Vistalite Black

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Don Henley is one the finest singing/songwriting drummers ever. He's done more for drummers who create music than most, just being Don Henley. Maybe he's using his considerable standing to help others try to make a living out of writing and performing music. I welcome it and I hope that his testimony helps. As someone who has sold music in the 80's, 90's and now - I can testify what everyone in the business already knows. The current system is an absolute disgrace. Why should the owner of Spotify be worth millions when they refuse to increase streaming rates at all? Why should David Crosby not be able to live on his royalties? Sooner or later the world will work out that art should be paid for. If Don Henley adds his voice to all the people complaining about it, great.
Don’t disagree, but David Crosby smoked more money in the 80s than I’ll make in my entire life. Nobody’s guaranteed two fortunes. Perhaps a bad example. Did he also get a new liver?
 

mcirish

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As a songwriter and artist, I think laws do need to change. There is no possible way to make any type of a living off what streaming services pay artists. They are getting rich and most artists get a fraction of a cent. It isn't right. Traveling cost a ton of money and it's hard to make it work. Basically at this point in time, artists are giving their music away for free. I don't see that as being fair when labels and streaming services are taking all the revenue for themselves.
 

eigentone

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You bring up some great questions, but it concerns me when someone says that "(fill-in-the-blanks) doesn't need the money". Who gets to decide that? I'm probably reading something into what you say that really isn't there, but I just wanted to put that out there.
Don Henley has an estimated net worth of 200 million dollars. If my saying "Don Henley doesn't need the money…" raises questions for you, then you are probably mistaking Needs with Wants.
 

Rock Salad

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Please help me to understand so i can support the right thing when petitions and fund raising drives come around.

What's the difference between internet and radio? And what do you suggest we support in legislation?
 

ARGuy

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Don Henley has an estimated net worth of 200 million dollars. If my saying "Don Henley doesn't need the money…" raises questions for you, then you are probably mistaking Needs with Wants.
Tell you what - please read my post again. Maybe I wasn't clear in what I was saying. I'll be happy to explain. Deal?
 

dsop

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Please help me to understand so i can support the right thing when petitions and fund raising drives come around.

What's the difference between internet and radio? And what do you suggest we support in legislation?

Radio can be compared to non-interactive streaming services (ones where you do NOT pick the music you want to hear). The service (or radio station) reports the music they play/stream to PROs (performance rights organizations) who, in turn, distribute payments to members. Revenue is generally generated from advertising.

Interactive streaming (where you DO pick what you want to hear) require the service to distribute payments to publishers according to agreements in place (which are heavily skewed to favor top artists). Revenue is generated by subscription fees.

One big issue with these "listen to all you want for one flat fee" services is that the math doesn't, and cannot, add up. It's like having a restaurant buffet that advertises "eat all you want every month for only $9.99".
 


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