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The life and times of james Hart: his family, his music, life in Luton and his occasional escapes onto the internet.

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Friday, 23 November 2007

More on radio and music..

Once again, I've got a bee in my clich� - and it's the same bee as a month or so back. It turns out that the Performing Rights Society are sending letters out to businesses, informing them that, if any employee plays music (including the radio) where other colleagues can hear it, the business requires a licence to be able to do it.

So, in the case of BBC radio, the licence fee payer is paying for the music to be broadcast, and then - if they want to listen at work without headphones on - to pay for it again. In case you're interested, here are the fees: www.mcps-prs-alliance.co.uk/SiteCollectionDocuments/PPS%20Tariffs/Tariff%20I.pdf, which - for a large company, could certainly add up.

This really doesn't seem fair, and I have written the following letter to our in-house newspaper to make my feelings known. Since it could be quite a controversial issue, I wonder if it'll be printed:

I've just been made aware that the Performing Rights Society is sending letters to businesses to remind them that, if a radio is played in an office or factory, a PRS licence is required.

I believe this is unfair, since - in the case of the BBC - the licence fee payer has already paid for the music to be broadcast, but now they (or the business for which they work) must pay for it again to listen to it.

Moreover, if I want to listen to, say, 6 music at my desk (without resorting to antisocial headphones) does the BBC have the appropriate PRS licence to allow me to? If so, it's another burden on the licence fee payer to give me what now amounts to a perk!

I really feel that this doesn't make any sense - especially since radio by its very nature benefits the music industry by promoting the music that they're selling... it seems a long way from the days of "Music While You Work."

How many times will the licence-fee payer have to stump up for that Spice Girls single, even if they have no intention of buying it..?

Maybe it'll fall on deaf ears, but it's worth making the point.

On a cheerier note, there's some great comedy on at the moment. With the hilarious return of Never Mind The Buzzcocks (Thursdays at 9pm on BBC2) and the consistent genius of QI (Fridays at 10pm on BBC2) on television, there are also a few entertaining programmes on the radio, like the spoof review programme Listen Against (Wednesdays at 6.30pm on Radio 4). It has a Chris Morris feel to it, which appeals to me
. I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue (Mondays at 6.30pm on Radio 4) is also back, so I often have something to look forward to hearing on my way home from work! As long as there isn't any music that other people can hear...

Posted by james at November 23, 2007 9:09 PM

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