The European Commission has opened a public consultation on
commitments made by two collecting societies, BUMA and SABAM, regarding
the licensing of online music. Collecting societies are responsible for
the management of copyright for music authors and deal with matters
such as granting licences, enforcing rights and collecting and
distributing royalties. The Commission is concerned that an agreement
between collecting societies from various countries has led to national
monopolies online that cannot be justified given the reach and scope of
the internet. BUMA and SABAM have made commitments to end the
territorial restrictions on cross-licensing arrangements between
themselves and other societies. The Commission has published these
commitments for comment from third parties with a view to making them
binding on the two societies.

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