Meeting 2 – MPA

Meeting 2 of EDIT took place in the MPA Board Room on Wednesday 15th July, a collection of labels and individuals presenting a united front for the dance community. Following from the first meeting at AIM, there were no issues arising, and the committee set the foundations that were discussed in the original meeting into place. Included in this was the name of the committee – EDIT (Electronic Dance Independence Team), the composition of the committee, the manifesto, meeting dates and key issues that faced members of the committee:

Accounting

It was agreed that there is a massive problem with the quality of information provided by digital services that in turn creates a problem in properly accounting to artists. Peter Pritchard suggested that the level of data from the services is very poor and should preferably be standardised – while industry standardisation would be hampered by vested commercial interests it was agreed that it would be useful to share information on effective systems that members have knowledge of.

PPL

PPL have indicated since the original meeting that they are open to discussion regarding how PPL and EDIT could work together. The main issues that arose with regards to PPL are (a) to improve labels’ knowledge on how to register their recordings (including for featured and non-featured artists, producers, remixers, etc), (b) improving PPL’s sampling procedures of dance and electronic airplay, and (c) improving distribution of blanket fees from bars, clubs, etc. PPL have indicated that they would like to engage with EDIT to consider how best to disseminate required information and improve the processes and committee will be kept appraised of any developments.

Physical Sales

The sharp decline in physical sales over recent years is a huge problem and whilst some labels have elected to solely focus on digital sales, many dance labels remain committed to marketing and selling physical product.

The Committee agreed to set up networking meetings with key dance specialist retailers to get a dialogue going, while Christ Goss agreed to prepare a list of physical retailers and those online stores that sell mail order physical product.

It was also noted that mix CDs and websites such as Resident Advisor that makes unlicensed podcasts available have accelerated the decline of the dance compilation market. Both AIM and PRS for Music operates a podcast licence although most podcasts remain unlicensed. Both organisations held talks with the UK Podcasters Association with a view to launching a joint initiative but no agreement was reached. Committee discussed merits of marketing and launching a competitively priced joint podcast licence. MF will discuss situation with PRS for Music.

Digital Licensing

The Committee noted that tracks are available on blogs the very moment that they become available for sale on Beatport, as bloggers know exactly when tracks are released. It might be useful to put the labels’ point of view across as part of an EDIT manifesto.

It was noted that a company called RipBlock offers anti-piracy services for independent labels. They provide takedown services by scanning search engines, known MP3 linking sites, blogs, forums and file hosting servers for £50 per track and they have good contacts with the blog sites. The committee will also begin work on an anti-piracy advice sheet for use by members.

Training & Education

Committee felt that it would be very useful to set up an EDIT mentoring scheme in which small dance labels could be informally mentored by staff from experienced labels. Arrangements could be made for the mentee to visit the mentor’s office at the end of a day.

Press & Publicity

Sharon Matheson reported that the media are aware of the AIM dance committee meeting and have been seeking further information. Committee agreed that EDIT should wait until the Manifesto has been approved before formally liaising with the media.

Full minutes of the second meeting are available by emailing electronicdanceindependence(at)googlemail.com

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