The UK version of popular user upload site YouTube will be pulling all music videos after negotiations between the Google-owned service and the countries' Performing Right Society (the UK version of the USA's BMI or ASCAP) failed to agree on new rates.
Damn. Just like that. Whoa.
Of course, it took mere minutes for both sides to start pointing fingers in the press via terse statements. Google accused the PRS of asking for “many, many times more” for licensing fees than before in their press release, while the PRS implied Google was just being greedy.
So it’s essentially become a p*ssing match, eh, gov’na?
“Google has told us they are taking this step because they wish to pay significantly less than at present to the writers of the music on which their service relies, despite the massive increase in YouTube viewing," swung the PRS. POW!
“The costs are simply prohibitive for us,” jabbed Google. "Under PRS’ proposed terms, we would lose significant amounts of money with every playback.” BLAM!
Of course, the real losers here are the British music fans, who lose their access to video classics from UK bands like Kajagoogoo, George Michaels, Spice Girls, Lady GaGa and Kylie Minogue! We shed a tear for ya, blokes!
(One interesting sticking point in the battle to the cyber-death: though the PRS collects royalties for some 50,000 songwriters, Google says the Society would not specify exactly which artists would be covered by the license. Hmmmm....)