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Irish musicians call for illegal file-sharing clampdown

David Davies 12 October 2010

Paul Brady and Sharon Corr were among those urging the Irish Government to  take urgent action when they participated in a debate at The Music Show in Dublin. Appearing on the panel were Brady, music manager and talent show judge Louis Walsh, Irish Government communications minister Eamon Ryan, Sports Entertainment Group’s Marc Marot and Irish Music Rights Organisation chief executive Victor Finn.

There were also many contributions from the floor, including one from Corrs violinist Sharon Corr, who recently released a solo album on Warner Music. “I employed a producer, a studio, I paid the orchestra to come in, the guy who did the score,” she said. “I don’t understand why they get paid and I don’t get paid [by people who download the album. It’s a basic right to be paid for your work.”

She went on to suggest that the Irish Government had a “very laissez-faire approach” to the whole issue, and called for the introduction of a Digital Economy Act – presumably comparable to that recently implemented in the UK.

Alluding to Ireland’s current economic malaise, Paul Brady (pictured here with admitted that “if I hear anyone else in Government saying the arts will get us out of our present difficulties, I think I’ll scream. You seem to expect us artists to be cultural ambassadors and work for nothing. […] I don’t know why we’re talking about three strikes. It is against the law. Why isn’t it one strike and you’re charged?”

Whilst a ‘three strikes’ policy has been arranged between record company representative body IRMA and broadband provider Eircom, other ISPs have so far decline to reach a similar agreement.

Responding to comments from the panel and the floor, Minister Ryan put the case for “some sort of consultative space where you can have both computing industries or ISP industries and musical industries sitting down and sharing some ideas – not just to do it through the courts, but to do it the smarter way, collaboratively.”

He now intends to move ahead with round-table discussions on the issue. “I would hope to have such a forum in place by the end of this month in the hope of taking that sort of approach, rather than just a legalistic approach,” he said.

For more information on the latest edition of The Music Show – which is run by Hot Press magazine – please see http://wordpress.hotpress.com/themusicshow.

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