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Production Factories (Broadcast Music)

Volume 389: debated on Wednesday 26 May 1943

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40.

asked the Minister of Production whether he has any statement to make regarding the availability of the British Broadcasting Corporation's programme, "Music while you work," for diffusion in factories?

41.

asked the Minister of Production whether progress is being made in the negotiations with the Performing Rights Society towards a settlement for a reasonable payment to be made for performing rights in "Music while you work" programmes and similar public performances?

42.

asked the Minister of Production whether his attention has been drawn to the decision of the courts that the "Music while you work" programmes in war factories are public performances and therefore subject to copyright; and whether, in order to prevent any discouragement of activities conducive to the war effort, he will consider amending the law to exempt these performances from copyright, or, alternatively, to limit the amount of fee which may be charged for the use of the copyright?

I am glad to be able to tell the House that as a result of negotiations which have taken place, agreements have been reached with the Performing Rights Society and Phonographic Performance, Ltd., which will make possible the diffusion of broadcast and other programmes of music and gramophone records in factories and other premises engaged on essential work, together with hostels and canteens established in connection with them, free of charge to individual managements. It is intended that the duration of the agreements should be for the period of the war. The sums to be paid annually by the Government to the Performing Rights Society and Phonographic Performance, Ltd., are £25,000 and £7,500 respectively. A full announcement giving the details of the scope and terms of the two agreements is being issued, so that all those affected may know where they stand. I should like to take this opportunity of saying that both the Performing Rights Society and Phonographic Performance, Ltd., have shown a most helpful and cooperative spirit throughout the negotiations.

I did not quite gather whether the figures given by the right hon. Gentleman are for a period of the war, irrespective of how long the war may last, or whether there is a time limit?