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Radiohead’s Ed O’Brien leads reactions to government streaming report: “It’s a great start”

Radiohead

Radiohead‘s Ed O’Brien is one of many musicians sharing their reactions to a new government report that has stated the current model for streaming needs a “complete reset”.

  • READ MORE: Streaming – what happens next? Artists demand “a shift in the way business is done”

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) Commons Select Committee has been examining the business model since last year and whether or not the model is fair to songwriters and performers.

Findings released today (July 15) see MPs setting out a “complete reset of streaming” that “enshrines in law [artists’] rights to a fair share of the earnings”.

O’Brien, who was one of the artists who gave evidence during the ‘Economics of music streaming’ inquiry, took to Facebook this afternoon to share his reaction. “It has finally been officially recognised that Artists have not been remunerated fairly,” he said.

“This new digital era that we are in is based on an old and deeply unfair 20th century model. This report recognised that there needs to be a fundamental reset for Artists, their rights and the way they are paid.”

He added: “What we need are true partnerships between Artists and the labels .. and transparency in the murky world of streaming.”

The DCMS report into Streaming which I contributed to was released yesterday.. it has finally been officially recognised…

Posted by Ed O'Brien on Thursday, July 15, 2021

The Radiohead guitarist then thanked everyone involved in helping with the inquiry, including Tom Gray of Gomez, who is responsible for the #BrokenRecord campaign which is calling for better streaming revenues for artists, and “the MPs who took the time to understand this deeply dysfunctional business”.

“BUT it’s only a start,” he added. “Now this needs to be legislated… however it’s a great start .. it’s official .. we build on this so that all Artists, in particular those who are starting out and those on the margins simply have a fair and equitable deal… It is all about fairness and transparency.” You can see O’Brien’s post above.

Tom Gray shared his thoughts also, writing: “The @CommonsDCMS report is DAMNING. It brilliantly takes each issue in turn and arrives at a conclusion on the balance of evidence. In every single instance it reflects an industry that is pocketing a fortune while failing UK performers and songwriters.”

Singer-songwriter Nadine Shah, who is an advocate for The FAC (Featured Artists Coalition), a UK trade body representing the specific rights and interests of music artists, responded to the news by sharing Gray’s tweet.

“The @CommonsDCMS report on music streaming is in,” she tweeted. “It’s a great result for music creators and hopefully will ignite change to make this a fairer industry. Thank you to everyone who’s been supporting us.”

Back in April, over 150 artists – including Paul McCartney, Kate Bush, Damon Albarn, Chris Martin, Noel Gallagher and Wolf Alice – signed an open letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson asking to help reform the streaming economy.

Meanwhile, a YouGov poll of music fans last year found that 77% of respondents believe that artists deserve a greater share of revenue from streaming services.

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