This article was first published in Midem blog. It is part of a series of interviews ahead of Midem 2018’s Global Indie Voices sessions, in association with IMPALA.
This article was first published in Midem blog. It is part of a series of interviews ahead of Midem 2018’s Global Indie Voices sessions, in association with IMPALA.
Today, 24th May 2018, Merlin celebrates its tenth anniversary as global digital rights agency for the independent label sector with the announcement of three key new hires; Marta de la Hoz joins as Head of Reporting, Chaida Kapfunde as Head of Technology & Development, and Quentin Martins as Member Operations Manager.
As news broke this morning of Sony’s intention to buy out most of its partners in EMI Music Publishing, independent music companies warn that the move will face regulatory opposition because it would stifle competition online and offline.
Yesterday, the European Commission presented its proposed budget for the European Union for 2021-2027.
New proposed legislation was published today, as part of the EU’s bid to ensure Europe’s digital market functions properly.
Today, IMPALA and 66 organisations from across Europe’s cultural and creative sectors sent an open letter to the EU institutions urging them to give a significant boost to the EU budget dedicated to culture.
“In My Head” by German duo Gurr released on Duchess Box records, has won IMPALA’s prestigious annual album prize.
Letter to EU parliamentarians involved in this week’s discussions in Strasbourg about the “Value Gap” provisions (Article 13) in proposed new copyright legislation.
For the 8th edition of the IMPALA European Album of the Year Award, 22 acts are nominated from 19 different countries. The winner will succeed Danish solo artist Agnes Obel.
The Worldwide Independent Network (WIN), the organisation that represents the interests of the global independent music community, has announced a new initiative to add to the signatories of the 2014 Fair Digital Deals Declaration.
With today’s release of the Recommendation on measures to effectively tackle illegal content online, the European Commission endorses a principled approach that will further guide Member States and intermediaries in identifying and addressing illegal content online, including infringements of intellectual property rights (IPR).
Europe is the second largest “cultural and creative industry” market in the world, accounting for over 7 million jobs and 4% of Europe’s GDP. And we believe they could achieve much more with a new strategy in Europe.
Yesterday, the music sector was gathered at the invitation of the European Commission to mark the official launch of the Preparatory Action “Music Moves Europe”, a pilot project that could be the first step toward a fully-fledged music programme to start in 2021 as part of the next generation of EU programmes. You can see below some highlights of the event.
IMPALA and other organisations from across the music sector welcome a new pilot programme for music in Europe and urge the EU to support a full European Music Programme in its future budget.
With a fast growing membership from the Balkans, IMPALA was at the MENT music festival and international conference this weekend for the first IMPALA board meeting in the region and a series of keynotes and panel discussions. Helen Smith (IMPALA’s Executive Chair) also gave an interview to the prominent Slovenian outlet Dnevnik, which was published on the 5th of February.
Ex-Yugoslavia is seeing the rise of a new kind of music entrepreneur. These numerous and ambitious record labels operate in territories with their very own specificities, from majors being represented by local indies to limited access to streaming platforms. The challenges are numerous and treacherous, yet this new breed of music labels is marching into the future with high hopes. It’s time to discover what their day-to-day reality looks like.
Helen Smith is head of IMPALA, the Independent Music Companies Association, which represents over 4000 small music companies and associations. It’s her job to influence the European Union on topics such as copyright and piracy from the independents‘ perspective, as well as doing deals with big companies on behalf of smaller players.
It was announced today that the EU is assigning an additional €60m to a key initiative for a guarantee facility to boost loans to smaller actors in the cultural sector. The announcement was made as part of the ‘Juncker Plan’, also known as the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI).
Today, the European Parliament adopted the Preparatory Action “Music Moves Europe: Boosting European music diversity and talent”.
London, October 23rd 2017 –. WINTEL 2017 is the second report produced for Worldwide Independent Network (WIN), mapping the global market share of the independent sector at copyright, rather than distribution level.
Labels Declare Their Independence!
A 35% increase in this year’s attendance demonstrates the growing interest and curiosity of the public for independent music.
Today a wide range of organisations from across the cultural and creative sectors wrote to MEP Axel Voss, Rapporteur on the proposal for a Directive on copyright to ask him to support a meaningful legislative solution to address the value gap.
IMPALA’s Outstanding Contribution to Independent Music Award goes this year to Swedish national Jonas Sjöström, acknowledging his crucial role in the development of Scandinavian independent music. He joins a list of recipients including Martin Mills (Beggars Group), Mario Pacheco (founder of Nuevos Medios and the UFI), Charles Caldas (MERLIN) and Armin van Buuren (Armada Music).
Today, the European Commission published its communication on “Tackling Illegal Content Online: Towards an enhanced responsibility of online platforms”. We welcome the Commission’s stance that “what is illegal offline is also illegal online” – this is paramount to the protection of intellectual property and copyright in particular. We also agree that online platforms “carry a significant societal responsibility in terms of protecting users online and preventing criminals from exploiting their platforms.”
At its Annual General Meeting in Hamburg at the Reeperbahn Festival on September 22nd, IMPALA elected a new Board. The 27 members will serve for a mandate of two years and include three new Board Members: Lampshade Media, Kobalt Music Recordings, and Sugar Music.
In a landmark day for independent music, Merlin, the global digital rights agency for the independent label sector, has announced its billionth dollar in distributions.
This morning the European Parliament inched closer to new copyright legislation in Europe. Opinions were adopted by two of the committees reviewing the proposal, one responsible for culture and the other looking after industry matters.
Representing 1,2 million jobs, the European music industry is growing at a fast pace and holds untapped potential that can be optimized through a tailor-made funding programme at EU level.
Ottawa, Canada and London, UK, 28th June 2017 – In a landmark ruling, the Supreme Court of Canada has today issued a judgment confirming that Canadian courts have the power to compel search engines to take effective action to remove illegal sites from their search results both in Canada and worldwide.
8th June, New York: – Merlin, the global digital rights agency for the independent label sector, has today unveiled results of their 2017 member survey at A2IM’s annual meeting.
As part of its partnership with Midem, IMPALA hosted two panels in Cannes this year to showcase the diversity of independent music in Europe, one focussing on European young labels and the other on the Balkan emerging music scene.
IMPALA and 20 other organisations representing companies and associations of right holders active across Europe have written a cross-sectoral letter to urge the Council and the Commission to fully exclude intangible digital content and audiovisual services from the scope of the Geo-blocking Regulation.
The European Commission published today the mid-term review of one of its top priorities, the digital single market. The report evaluates the progress made at the midpoint and sets out some new policies.
Spotify, the leading global music streaming service, and Merlin, the global digital rights agency for the independent label sector, today announced a new multi-year license agreement – ensuring the world’s leading independent record labels and their artists will remain at the core of Spotify’s offering to music fans.
The Worldwide Independent Network (WIN), the organisation that represents the interests of the global independent music community and of which IMPALA is a member, has unveiled a comprehensive new study, which provides the first ever global overview of chart reporting.
Danish singer-songwriter Agnes Obel is the winner of this year’s IMPALA European Independent album of the year award with her album Citizen of Glass. She succeeds artists such as Caribou, José Gonzalez, Adele or The xx.
IMPALA has now revealed its shortlist of nominees for the seventh edition of the IMPALA Album of the Year Award. Once again the selection underlines the diversity and quality of independent labels from all over Europe. 25 albums are nominated and nineteen countries are represented this year.
The European Parliament adopted today a report calling on the European Commission to develop a “comprehensive, coherent and long-term industrial policy framework for the cultural and creative sectors”.
Since October 2015, the “Plus 1 – Refugees welcome!” campaign has been collecting donations in Berlin’s nightlife for aid projects for refugees. In recognition of the initiative and as an encouragement for similar campaigns in Europe, IMPALA Executive Chairwoman Helen Smith presented the campaign with the Outstanding Contribution Award 2016 in Berlin yesterday. This is only the second time a project has won this award after Label Love (UK) in 2011.
IMPALA shares its views on the EC’s proposal for a new Directive on copyright, published today. Part of a wider strategy to reinforce Europe’s digital market, this proposal covers a range of sectors, including music where independent companies are at the forefront.
Today the European Commission has decided to clear Sony’s buyout of the late Michael Jackson estate’s shares in Sony/ATV.
This decision follows a preliminary investigation during which the Commission examined the views of customers and competitors.
After a busy period for the cultural and creative sectors, we’re looking forward to the summer break. Yet we’re well aware that some people in Brussels will still be hard at work, putting the final touches to the Commission’s plans for its second package of copyright-related proposals.
As the European Commission reaches a key stage in its investigation into Sony’s buy out of the Michael Jackson estate’s shares in Sony/ATV, independent music companies renew their call for a tough stance to be taken.
This is the final edition of the FIVEUNDERFIFTEEN campaign showcasing top labels 15 years young or younger. Since the beginning of the campaign in March, each month five European young labels are featured in The Independent Echo but this month’s selection is unique because it includes an additional label from the United States.
Over 1,000 artists (update: new signatories have been added, the list now numbers almost 1,300 artists) have written to EU President Juncker asking him to close what is known as the “value gap” (see letter and list of artists here). Artists across the world are increasingly vocal about YouTube and other platforms “siphoning value”.
Change is on the way that’s for sure, but one thing is clear. The UK music sector will remain a fundamental player in Europe, which of course goes beyond the EU and we will continue to work hard to ensure that Brexit doesn’t interfere with the ability of European citizens to continue to enjoy UK music and vice versa. Breaking borders is what our labels do with their artists on a daily basis and that will continue.
58 MEPs have signed a letter addressed to President Juncker calling on the European Commission to clarify the status of online services providing access to creative works.
16th June, New York: – Speaking at A2IM’s Annual Meeting, Charles Caldas, CEO Merlin, the global digital rights agency for the independent label sector, has announced the results of Merlin’s 2016 member survey.
IMPALA’s Young Label Spotlight FIVEUNDERFIFTEEN is now in its third edition. In partnership with The Independent Echo and Midem, this feature continues the story of Europe’s most inspiring young labels.
For the first time ever, the independent music sector has its own global report on market share.
As the EU sets out its next steps towards a Digital Single Market, independent music companies comment the EU’s plans to boost e-commerce and improve the online trading environment.
With over a hundred registrations or award upgrades totalling just under 10 million units, IMPALA’s latest Sales Awards is one of the biggest ever and includes artists from across Europe like Caro Emerald (The Netherlands), Christine and The Queens (France), SSIO (Germany), Oscar and the Wolf (Belgium), Jamie XX (United Kingdom), Els Pets (Spain), Raubtier (Sweden) etc.
Following the launch of IMPALA’s Young Label Spotlight in March, the FIVEUNDERFIFTEEN campaign continues with a new set of five labels. This second edition is announced in partnership with Midem and The Independent Echo.
With Sony’s buy out of the late Michael Jackson estate’s shares in Sony/ATV finalised this week, IMPALA has confirmed that it has serious concerns over the impact of the deal on Sony’s market power.
As part of its fifteenth anniversary, IMPALA is launching a new monthly feature to put the spotlight on young independent music companies across Europe. The project will shine a light on the work of a set of unique labels 15 years young or younger.
IMPALA’s Independent Album of the Year Award goes to Swedish singer-songwriter José González for “Vestiges & Claws”. This year’s shortlist put the spotlight on labels founded within the past 15 years, as part of IMPALA’s 15th anniversary. Released in February 2015 by Stockholm-based Imperial Recordings, “Vestiges & Claws” is González’s third solo album. The artist and the label have been working together since 2002 when Imperial Recordings was launched. José González is also the frontman of folk rock band Junip.
The Merlin Board has approved a further significant reduction in Merlin’s Administration Fee.
With IMPALA turning fifteen, this year’s European independent Album of the Year Award comes with a special touch. All records up for the award were released by labels under fifteen, showcasing the musical talent and diversity of releases by young independent music companies across Europe.
Eurosonic Noorderslag is the latest winner of independent label organisation IMPALA’s Outstanding Contribution Award to independent music
As the EC sets out its agenda on the future of copyright, IMPALA shares the perspective of thousands of European independent music companies.
Merlin, the global digital rights agency for the world’s independent label sector, has today announced results of its biennial board election and the 15 executives who will oversee the organisation’s strategy until 2017.
On the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the UNESCO convention on cultural diversity, independent music companies urge the EU to take the lead with concrete implementation.
IMPALA welcomes the move in France to adopt a memorandum for the fair development of online music.
IMPALA held its annual general meeting this Thursday at Reeperbahn Festival, electing 26 members to its Board for the next two years. The meeting also marked the start of a year of initiatives for IMPALA’s 15th anniversary.
Merlin, the global digital rights agency for the independent label sector, has today published results of its 2015 member survey.
IMPALA welcomes Apple’s confirmation earlier this week that it intends to address concerns over its terms for independent labels and its commitment to the independent music sector
With the EU’s Digital Assembly in Riga concluding, the independent music sector calls for a level playing field to promote Europe’s digital future.
Independent music companies welcomed the announcement yesterday by the European Commission that it will introduce a series of measures to improve Europe’s online environment.
Last night MEP Sabine Verheyen hosted IMPALA’s exchange with EU officials and the owner-managers of key independent labels from all over Europe.
Starting from robust copyright rules, Europe needs to forge a level playing field for smaller European actors who work everyday to deliver a diversified cultural offer in the digital market.
“Our Love”, by Canadian artist Daniel Victor « Dan » Snaith, also known as CARIBOU, has won the annual European music prize organised by IMPALA for the best independent album in Europe.
With 2014 an exceptional year for independent music, IMPALA has now revealed its shortlist of nominees for the fifth edition of the IMPALA Album of the Year Award.
Independent music companies launched a unique Digital Action Plan today, calling for a new European industrial policy to drive the digital market through the cultural and creative sectors, which account for 4,2% of EU GDP and 7.1 million EU jobs.
Amidst ongoing concerns about the conduct of YouTube towards the independent label community, IMPALA the independents’ organisation based in Brussels, confirmed today that the formal process in Brussels has now started, with a detailed complaint lodged with the European Commission earlier this week.
Earlier today the European Commission gave its regulatory approval of the sale of the Parlophone Group (PLG) to Warner Music Group (WMG).
With the announcement of Warner Music’s successful bid for the Parlophone group, IMPALA sees the news as a step towards tackling the duopolisation of the music market by the two market leaders Universal and Sony.
The European Commission has released a non-confidential version of its decision on Sony/EMI earlier today, explaining its approval of the Sony/EMI publishing merger on 19th April, subject to remedies.
As Sony finally notifies its deal to acquire EMI music publishing, IMPALA confirmed its opposition, warning that the deal would give Sony excessive power and should be blocked.
IMPALA – Independent Music Companies Association
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