Regarding the story “Music schools to sue over copyright fees” in the May 17 edition, I think the action of the Japanese Society for Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers (JASRAC) will keep people away from music. It may be difficult for music schools to win the case, because JASRAC already collects copyright fees from music used in dance schools, fitness clubs and karaoke, all of it lawfully.
It seems possible that JASRAC’s request will be accepted, but once it starts collecting fees it is likely that music schools will have to raise their fees. This directly impacts not only the schools but also the children who really want to learn music, and their parents, of course. Also, if the demand is accepted, it will lead to an expansion of collecting fees from other music-related businesses.
JASRAC has not denied that even music colleges would be targeted, and that it would be possible to require copyright fees from whoever uses music under JASRAC management.
Some artists have said they don’t support copyright fees on music used in education, so if JASRAC decides to do so, the artists’ position on this issue will be ignored.
I know music copyright is a protection for artists, all thanks to JASRAC, which needs to collect fees to continue its business, but to extend its range to music schools is going too far. It will prevent music education and check the future growth of music.
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.