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Powerful Tool For Music Creators: District Advocate
On Nov. 3 Music Biz Weekly podcast hosts Michael Brandvold and Jay Gilbert invited Recording Academy Chief Industry, Government & Member Relations Officer Daryl Friedman to speak about District Advocate.
Friedman set the scene for what has been going on 20 years of advocacy work by the Recording Academy, describing how members can become immediately involved via GRAMMY.com/Advocacy for access to materials to help them effectively advocate for music creators.
Outdated laws both old and new have been given a fresh look by Congress, which is expected to consider new legislation by the end of next year.
"For artists, songwriters and producers, we're all basically operating under systems that are in some cases years, in some cases decades, in some cases a century old, so we think this is not a bad time to consider updating that and Congress has agreed with us," Friedman said.
District Advocate, in particular, has grown from 100 members to 1,600 in all 50 states. Friedman describes District Advocate as "the most powerful tool we have."
"It is the largest grassroots movement for music," said Friedman. "In fact, we haven't found any industry that can mobilize people the way that music people have been mobilized for District Advocate."
Although the bottom line for the Recording Academy is "to make sure the law gives creators a fair shake," for legislators their own bottom line is their district constituents — the voters. Friedman said music licensing "is the only example in our America economy where one party can use another party's intellectual property without permission or compensation."
That is why it is such a good thing that our voices are raised together and in that ongoing fight.