The music industry has undergone significant changes in recent years with the rise of digital music streaming services and online distribution. With this shift, the issue of artist ownership and monetization of their voice has become a major concern for artists, record labels, and the wider music industry. In this white paper, we aim to propose a framework for regulating the music industry that allows artists to monetize the likeness of their voice while retaining ownership of its distinctiveness and sharing in the commercialization. We also include provisions for the likeness of songs that are partly owned by record companies so that in those cases, revenue of IP that is owned by record companies is also compensated.
The music industry has been historically dominated by record labels, who own the rights to the music they produce and distribute. This system has led to many artists being unable to fully monetize their work and retain ownership of their voice. Furthermore, the use of technology in music production has made it possible to manipulate voices, which raises concerns about the use of an artist’s likeness without their consent.
To address these issues, we propose a framework that involves the following:
- Artist ownership: Artists should have the right to retain ownership of their voice and its distinctiveness. This includes the right to control how their voice is used and to be compensated for its use.
- Licensing: Record companies should be required to obtain licenses from artists for the use of their voice in any commercial capacity. These licenses should be negotiated between the artist and the record company and should include provisions for revenue sharing.
- Monetization: Artists should be able to monetize the likeness of their voice by entering into licensing agreements with third-party companies for the use of their voice in advertisements, movies, and other commercial ventures. These agreements should be negotiated directly between the artist and the third party, with record companies receiving a share of the revenue.
- Compensation: Record companies should compensate artists for the use of their voice in any commercial capacity. This compensation should be negotiated between the artist and the record company and should include provisions for revenue sharing.
- Transparency: All licensing and compensation agreements should be transparent and publicly available to ensure that artists are being compensated fairly for the use of their voice.
The proposed framework seeks to strike a balance between the interests of artists and record companies by ensuring that artists retain ownership of their voice while also allowing record companies to monetize their investments. By implementing this framework, the music industry can ensure that artists are fairly compensated for their work and that their voice is not used without their consent. It is our hope that this framework will promote a more equitable and sustainable music industry for all stakeholders involved.