The astonishing growth of the digital marketplace has created all manner of opportunities - yet often these opportunities aren't reaching the artists themselves.
Billboard reports that a coalition of more than 700 independent labels have come together to forge the 'Fair Digital Deals Declaration'. A huge showing from the independent community, the declaration contains five primary points much of which are focussed on gaining a fair deal for artists.
The points in full:
1. Ensure that artists’ share of download and streaming revenues is clearly explained in recording agreements and royalty statements in reasonable summary form.
2. Account to artists a good-faith pro-rata share of any revenues and other compensation from digital services that stem from the monetization of recordings but are not attributed to specific recordings or performances.
3. Encourage better standards of information from digital services on the usage and monetization of music.
4. Support artists who choose to oppose, including publicly, unauthorized uses of their music.
5. Support the collective position of the global independent record company sector.
In addition to this, the Worldwide Independent Network also shared a 'Global Independent Manifesto', which argues that indies "deserve equal market access and parity of terms with Universal, Sony and Warner, and an independent copyright should be valued and remunerated at the same level as a major company copyright."
Martin Martin is the chairman of the Beggar's Group of labels - which contains 4AD, Rough Trade, XL and more - and he offered the following comment: "Why wouldn’t we treat artists fairly? It seems so obvious that we shouldn’t have to say it, but let’s say it, loud and proud."