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Vietnam Airlines stops music after copyright row

vietnamair.gifVietnamese music programmes will cease on Vietnam Airlines flights due to copyright claims filed by Centre for Protection of Music Copyright.

On October 20, Vietnam Airlines (VNA) received official word from the Centre for Protection of Music Copyright asking it to pay a fee when it uses music products for business. The airline disagreed with the requirement, reasoning that it has already paid for a licence to use the material via VCD and CD purchase.

The copyright centre countered by saying that such companies are not selling music copyright, but only the music for private use, and VNA balked at the order.

“The Ministry of Culture and Information (MCI) and Ministry of Finance have issued no documents regarding payment of copyright yet, but in the near future VNA will stop buying and using Vietnamese music, despite being the national airline company and contributing greatly to promoting and introducing Vietnamese culture internationally”, said Nguyen Xuan Hien, General Director of VNA. He has also sent a letter to MCI asking if VNA must pay music copyrights to the VCD/CD companies, or to the copyright centre.

According to Phan Phuong, deputy director of the Centre for Protection of Music Copyright, those who use copyrighted material for business must pay the authors, performers and VCD/CD companies. Currently, the copyright centre has retrieved royalties for 70 authors who signed copyright contracts. By the end of the year, karaoke shops will have to pay copyright for foreign music following a deal made between the copyright centre and International Music Composer’s Copyright Association.

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