Concerns grow over collection of royalties for recording artists

ECCO royalties

CASTRIES, St. Lucia – The Eastern Caribbean Collective Organization for Music Rights (ECCO) Inc., is concerned that some 90 percent of the money it collects in royalties goes to societies overseas.

The organization’s Operations Manager, Vanesta Mortley, told reporters the situation is the result of more international rather than local content being aired by local radio stations.

“The local creators would be suffering because if their music is not being played then the chances of them getting royalties – obviously there wouldn’t be any,” Mortley stated.

However, she explained that as an organization, ECCO cannot determine what radio stations here play.

“That is not our role. We just have to collect and distribute royalties to the right owners,” she stated.

“The creators, through some association of some sort can lobby for local, content so that whatever royalties are actually collected can be within whatever territory that the royalties are actually collected,” the ECCO Operations Manager said.

Members of  ECCO last met here over the week end at the  where the royalties issue was one of the matters discussed.

Mortley said there is also concern over non-compliance by radio stations in St. Lucia and the rest of the OECS in paying royalties for the use of copyrighted music.

“For ECCO it is a major concern because that is where most of the consumption of music is,” she asserted.

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