Saturday, 30 November 2013

Police helicopter crashes into live music pub in Scotland

A police helicopter has crashed into the roof of The Clutha pub in Glasgow, Scotland, close to the Clyde River. One eyewitnesses said the aircraft dropped "from a great height at a great speed... like a stone". Rescue efforts were in "full operation", according to Scotland’s first minister Alex Salmond, whilst police confirmed that two officer and a civilian were on board the helicopter during the incident. Three people have been confirmed as dead by the BBC as rescue operations continue with many people trapped in the unstable building and debris and 32 have been taken to hospital. The bar was busy with revellers enjoying a gig by nine-piece ska band Esperanza at The Clutha Vaults when the crash occurred and it is thought over 100 people were present, enjoying a Friday night out.   A senior fire officer said they had made contact with some people trapped inside the pub but the building was unsafe and they were taking a "methodical" approach to the rescue. The rescue operation continued throughout the night  - whilst some attendees were rescued or escaped, others have been trapped by a collapse on the left-hand side of the building.

UPDATE: 18.00 Saturday 30 November: We are sad to report that eight people have been now been confirmed as dead. A further 14 people are being treated for "very serious injuries" in hospitals across the city, as tales of heroism continue to emerge from the shocking scenes.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Blur out of Big Day Out

Blur have pulled out of Australia's Big Day Out bash in January, saying that the event's organisers were "shifting goalposts" and making "challenging conditions". The band were set to co-headline the festival, which takes place over six Australian cities between 17th January and the 2nd Feb 2014, with Pearl Jam and Arcade Fire, but said on Facebook: "We've done our very best to work with the organisers and considered every option to make it happen, but they've let us down and let everyone else down too".

Phillips out at AEG

AEG has announced a series of changes at its concert division which sees the departure of Randy Phillips, Jay Marciano, COO of the AEG parent company, will become Chairman of AEG Live and will have a more hands-on role in running the division. Reporting in to him will be Paul Tollett, who remains President of the Coachella-producing Goldenvoice unit; John Meglen as President Of Global Touring; and Shawn Trell who becomes COO of AEG Live. Trell replaces Thomas Miserendino, who recently moved within the business to become CEO of AEG Europe.

Watkins pleads guilty to child sex charges

Ian Watkins, the former singer of the Welsh rock band Lostprophets, has pleaded guilty to a series of "depraved" child sex offences including theattempted rape of a baby which he had previously denied. In Cardif Crown Court, prosecutor Chris Clee QC described Watkins as a "determined and committed paedophile". Watkins made a series of admissions in a last-minute change of plea ahead of what would have been the launch of his trial. He pleaded guilty to sex offences involving the babies of two women fans – attempting to rape the 11-month-old baby of a fan 'Woman A' and conspiring to rape the baby daughter of another fan 'Woman B'.

Monday, 25 November 2013

American Music Award winners 2013

Taylor Swift, Justin Timberlake, One Direction and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis were the biggest winners at the 2013 American Music Awards on Sunday. And those gorgeous winners are .......

Taylor Swift


Ariana Grande 

Florida Georgia Line Featuring Nelly, "Cruise"

Justin Timberlake   

Taylor Swift

One Direction

One Direction, "Take Me Home"

Luke Bryan

Taylor Swift

Lady Antebellum

Taylor Swift, "Red"

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, "The Heist"

Justin Timberlake


Justin Timberlake, "The 20/20 Experience"

Imagine Dragons

Marc Anthony 


Maroon 5

Matthew West 

"Pitch Perfect"


Friday, 22 November 2013

Spotify valued at $4 billion as Deezer confirms US plans

After the latest fund raining venture netting US $250 million, the Wall Street journal says Spotify is now valued at $4 billion. US-based Technology Crossover Ventures have led on the latest funding round. Spotify's publicly listed rival Pandora, has a market cap, according to the WSJ, of $5.7 billion. Pandora is bigger than Spotify in terms of customers (over 70 million active users, versus Spotify's 24 million), though its younger rival is operating in many more countries, and actually brought in more revenue last year. Both companies have seen losses widen in 2013. And in related news, one of the founders of Deezer has told news agency AFP that the company will finally arrive in the US market next year.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Belgian Courts block the Pirate Bay again

The Supreme Court in Belgium has upheld an earlier ruling that forces internet service providers in the country to put web-blocks in place against all "current and future domains" utilised by The Pirate Bay. The Belgian Anti-Piracy Foundation began legal action to force ISPs in the country to block access to the Bay on copyright grounds in 2011, securing an injunction against net firms Belgacom and Telenet on second attempt.

Ministry decision delayed as talks take place

London mayor Boris Johnson has again delayed a decision on plans for a residential development opposite the Ministry Of Sound nightclub, following a meeting with representatives from either side earlier this week, with the club fearing that the new development will put its future at risk. After meeting with Ministry and property developer Oakmayne, Johnson deferred his decision until next month, pending further discussions between the two sides themselves. Presencer said in a statement published on the MoS website: "We're encouraged that the Mayor has chosen to adjourn the decision and we're confident he recognises that the solutions we are putting forward will ensure all parties are happy with the outcome. We have always said that we can co-exist with a new development and we welcome regeneration in Southwark. We are committed to our local area and neighbouring businesses, as we have been for more than 20 years". He added: "As the Mayor has requested, we will sit down with the developer to work on a mutually agreeable, sustainable solution - one which will deliver housing for London and safeguard the future of our club". Meanwhile a spokesperson for Johnson said: "Good progress was made on Tuesday and the Ministry Of Sound accepted that the noise mitigation measures built into the building were satisfactory. However, they were looking for greater certainty and with so much at stake for both the nightclub and the developer, the Mayor has decided that a short adjournment would be the most sensible way forward. This would allow both parties to carefully consider a legal mechanism recently proposed by the Ministry Of Sound which they say could address their concerns". They added: "The Mayor expressed hope that a solution could be reached that would deliver much-needed housing in Elephant And Castle while ensuring that the Ministry Of Sound, one of London's leading cultural and musical icons, can continue to thrive".

The Revolving Door

Merlin, the organisation that represents independent labels worldwide has selected a new board. Beggars boss man Martin Mills was re-elected and will stay on as Chairman of the group. Meanwhile Essential Music USA's Erik Gilbert and Evolution Music Hong Kong's Ashley Whitfield join the board for the first time. The Board now comprises Europe: Erik Brataas - Phonofile (Norway), Michel Lambot - PIAS Group (Belgium), Martin Mills - Beggars Group (UK), Florian von Hoyer - Altafonte (Spain), Horst Weidenmueller - K7 (Germany) Plus non-voting observers for Europe: Emmanuel de Buretel - Because Music (France), Oke Goettlich - Finetunes (Germany): North America: Glenn Dicker - Redeye Distribution and Yep Roc Records - (USA), Erik Gilbert - Essential Music and Marketing (USA), Dave Hansen - Epitaph Records (USA), Geoff Kulawick - IDLA (Canada), Tom Silverman - Tommy Boy (USA) plus non-voting observers for North America: Kris Gillespie - Domino Recording Co (USA), Darius Van Arman - Dead Oceans/Jagjaguwar/Numero Group/Secretly Canadian (USA): Rest Of World: Colin Daniels - Inertia (Australia), Hilton Roth - African Dope - (South Africa), Luciana Pegorer - Delira Musica (Brazil), Ashley Whitfield - Evolution Music (Hong Kong) and Alison Wenham (WIN)

The IFPI's market research chief Gabriela Lopes is to join Universal Music as Senior Vice President Global Insight.

Celador Radio, which operates a network of local stations under the Breeze brand, plus three Jack FM outlets, has announced Don Thomson as its new CEO.

Caroline International, has announced a number of a new appointments who will report into the division's top duo MD Michael Roe and Head Of Music Jim Chancellor. Joining are Berlin-based Tina Adams, formerly with Domino Records; Amsterdam-based marketing and A&R man Fred van Kruining; Emma Greengrass, formerly with Oasis's label Big Brother Recordings; and Anya Strafford, previously with the aforementioned Co-op Music. The latter two will be UK-based in their new roles.

Warner Music have announced the promotion of Lucy Otterwell to the role of SVP for Digital Strategy & Business Development for the EMEA region.

Digital music company Rdio is downsizing its workforce, with a source telling TechCrunch that about 35 staff members are likely to go, reducing the firm's overall headcount between a fifth and a third.

The Kobalt Music Group has announced the appointment of former Sony and BMG marketing exec Ryan Wright to the role of SVP Marketing. Ryan will be based in New York and reports to Kobalt President Richard Sanders.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

SFX snaps up i-Motion

SFX, The EDM-focused company led by entertainment industry veteran Robert Sillerman has now bought i-Motion, the long-standing German dance event promoter. The deal is reportedly worth $21 million, of which $5 million is made up of stock in the rapidly expanding dance music business. i-Motion currently operates eight festivals in Germany, Poland and Belarus, including Nature One and Toxicator, and works with a number of brand and media partners on its events. Confirming the buy, which has been in the works for a few months, Sillerman told reporters: "i-Motion is a key strategic acquisition for us, as it sits at the helm of dance music in Europe's biggest country and is a portal to the fast-growing EMC markets of Continental Europe".

Gaga's Russian promoter fined for violating anti-gay laws

A court in St Petersburg has fined the promoters of a Lady Gaga show that took place in the Russian city last year under Russia's controversial "blame it on the gays" law. As previously reported, Gaga's show was criticised almost immediately last December, with local political figures accusing the singer of breaching rules that ban the "promotion" of homosexuality in the presence of minors. Ruling on the complaint, the judge hearing the case said that promoter Planeta Plus had  failed to protect "children from information that could harm their health and/or development". Though the firm was only fined 20,000 roubles, just under £400. It is thought the parents of the minor may launch a civil action against Planeta.

Monday, 18 November 2013

Vans Warped Tour stage dive goes wrong

The Vans Warped Tour was briefly shut down after a stage jump went dramatically wrong during the Sunday afternoon (17.11.13) of the event. A Gigwise reviewer attending the Alexandra Palace event reports that the event was halted after a stage stunt by George Watsky went wrong. He climbed onto the lighting rigging during his performance and attempted to dive into the audience from some 10 metres above the stage. The audience reportedly parted, and Watsky fell to the floor, suffering unknown injuries although he later discharged himself from hospital.  A female member of the audience was left with a broken arm after the accident. Another man was injured. In an the video from the show (link below), George Watsky can be seen high above the audience before his jump. Shortly afterwards, the show resumed. The rapper later apologised for his "stupid and irresponsible" stunt at the London show.

Video here

And in the USA - a Buffalo Bills fan 'fell' from an upper from the Upper Deck of the Ralph Wilson stadium onto fans below - again amazingly - it seems no serious injuries. The man who fell has a shoulder injury, the man he fell on a head injury: Video here

Friday, 15 November 2013

McGuinness and Oseary to merge in Live Nation

More management news: The managers of U2 and Madonna are close to merging their respective management companies into a new venture that will sit within the Live Nation empire, according to various media reports. Paul McGuinness will merge his Principle Management business with Guy Oseary's Maverick company, with the former becoming Chairman of the new firm and the latter the more hands-on CEO. That would see Oseary become involved in the day-to-day management of U2's affairs, all within the Live Nation family.

Managers plan a new fund

Hypebot reports that Scooter Braun, the manager of music stars Justin Bieber, Carly Rae Jepsen and Psy, is meeting with the managers of several music artists with the goal to raise $120 to $200 million for a new venture fund. The New York Times reports that Braun is discussing with Drake and his managers, Shania Twain and Little Big Town Representative Jason Owen; and former Gaga manager Troy Carter. 

Africa Express launch new Mali album

Africa Express are releasing a new LP 'Maison Des Jeunes', recorded in Bamako in Mali in one week this October, featuring the likes of Nick Zinner from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Damon Albarn, Two Inch Punch and Ghostpoet,  singer Kankou Kouyaté, Tumbuktu group Songhoy Blues and Bamako-based talking drum band Doucoura . Whilst it'll initially be released digitallyas an 11 track album, a tangible edition will follow via Transgressive in early 2014. Marking its coming out, Songhoy Blues and Kankou Kouyaté will play live at a party on 9 Dec at London's Oval Space, where there'll also be DJ sets by Ghostpoet, Olugbenga and David Maclean and a Premier of Africa Express's film of their 2013 train tour of Great Britain. Click here to get tickets, here for more info on the project, and look here to see a clip documenting the Mali trip and Songhoy Blues track Soubour here

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

The 2013 A Greener Festival Awards winners are announced

Forty three proud winners of the prestigious 2013 A Greener Festival Award have been announced by A Greener Festival. Each Festival has to sign up to a strict check list of environmental good practice - and each event is inspected by one or more environmental auditors, the festivals are invited to provide supporting evidence such as environmental policies, waste management plans, analysis of CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions and the final awards are decided by the AGF's Executive Committee. So, for 2013 the forty three wonderful festivals (up from forty one events who won the Award in 2012) , which are some of the greenest in the world, can be confirmed as:
Outstanding Award
For truly outstanding and inspirational events. These need to be exceptional events who have significantly reduced greenhouse gas emissions, have excellent travel, transport and waste management programmes, protect the environment and minimise water use and communicate this to the public.
Croissant Neuf Summer Party (UK)
The Falls Festival, Marion Bay (AUS)
Hebridean Celtic Festival  (UK)
Island Vibe Festival (AUS)
Lightning in a Bottle (USA)
Oya Festival (NOR)
Shambala Festival (UK)
Splendour In The Grass (AUS)
Sunrise Festival - Another World, The Festival Micronation (UK)
Way Out West (SWE)
Welcome to the Future Festival (NL)
Highly Commended Award
For well managed environmentally aware festivals which have taken significant steps to reduce waste, reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and engage with the audience.
Bona Nit Barcelona (ES)
Bonnaroo  (USA)
Bristol Circus Festival (UK)
Le Cabaret Vert  (FR)
Cambridge Folk Festival (UK)
The Glastonbury Festival (UK)
The Falls Festival, Lorne (AUS)
Regrowth Festival (AUS)
Wood Festival (UK)
Commended Award
For well-managed and environmentally aware festivals
Calgary Folk Music Festival (CAN)
Dia de la Música (ES)
End of the Road (UK)
Folk, Rhythm & Life (AUS)
Greenbelt  (UK)
Heart of Glass, Heart of Gold  (FR)
Indian Summer Festival (NL)
Larmer Tree Festival (UK)
Malmofestivalen (SWE)
PlanetaMadrid (ES)
Plisskën Festival (GR)
Rock 'n Coke (TR)
SOS 4.8  (ES)
Winnipeg Folk (CA)
Improving Award
For festivals at the beginning of the green “journey” that can exhibit a significant engagement with the process of reducing the event’s environmental impact and greenhouse gas emissions.
BBC Radio 2 Live and The Proms in Hyde Park (UK)
Bluesfest (AUS)
Body and Soul (Eire)
Brownstock Festival (UK)
Hadra Trance Festival VII (FR)
Nozstock: The Hidden Valley (UK)
T-in-the-Park (UK)
Truck (UK)
Y-Not Festival (UK)
The Greener Festival Award is the internationally recognised independent scheme for environmentally aware festivals which is available for events throughout Europe, North America and Australia. In 2012 forty one festivals gained the prestigious mark,  and this year forty three events successfully completed the scheme certifying their green credentials. Festivals who apply for the scheme must prove to the judges that the festival has meaningful and effective environmental policies and practices to deal with traffic and transport, greenhouse gas emissions, waste and recycling, water conservation, noise pollution, ethical policies and environmental protection. The festivals should also have sustainable office policies.
The overall winner of the UK's Greenest Festival Award will be announced at the UK Festival Awards at the London Camden Roundhouse on Monday December 2nd.
The Greener Festival Awards are generously sponsored and supported by
Robertson Taylor are specialist insurance brokers in the music industry and offer a discount  insurance scheme for green events which AGF endorse.

Monday, 11 November 2013

EMAs presented

The European Music Awards took place in Amsterdam last night and the 2013 winners are:

Best Song: Bruno Mars - Locked Out Of Heaven
Best Video: Miley Cyrus - Wrecking Ball
Best Female: Katy Perry
Best Male: Justin Bieber
Best New: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
Best Live: Beyoncé

Best Pop: One Direction
Best Hip Hop: Eminem
Best Rock: Green Day
Best Electronic: Avicii
Best Alternative: Thirty Seconds To Mars

Best Look: Harry Styles
Biggest Fans: Tokio Hotel

Best World Stage: Linkin Park - Mexico 2012
Best Push: Austin Mahone - April 2013
Best Worldwide Act: 李宇春 Chris Lee (Southeast Asia)
Global Icon: Eminem

One week left to apply for UK export funding

Record industry trade body the BPI  is reminding independent music companies that they have one left to apply for grants under the Music Export Growth Scheme, the new UK Trade & Investment-funded initiative launched back in September. The programme is aimed at SME music companies - including labels, publishers and management firms - who are working with artists who have already enjoyed commercial success in the UK, and who are now plotting global expansion. Grants from £5000 to £50,000 are available to fund international marketing campaigns that aim to expand audience and revenues for British artists overseas.

Friday, 8 November 2013

The Revolving Door

Agent Francesco Caccamo has joined Primary Talent from Echo Location Talent Agency.

Watford Colosseum has appointed Tim Brinkman as it's new Director, succeeding interim Director Elizabeth Jones.

Gareth Paul Jones has confirmed that he will leave Apple where he was a Product Manager, and join Twitter, tweeting “I’ll be working on Platform Partnerships – specifically advertising focused".

The Ticket Factory has appointed three new e-commerce and ticketing experts to assist with its move towards the entertainment and online retail sector. Rob Williams has joined as operations director, having previously worked at Nottingham’s Capital FM Arena and Dixons Retail Group. Client services director Kelly Whitehead has extensive senior level experience in ticketing with Avalon,, AEG Live and Mean Fiddler.  Finally, Gail Webb joins as consumer sales and marketing director, having held the role of head of digital for the NEC Group. The three will work with MD Stuart Cain to develop The Ticket Factory's online marketing and e-commerce capability.

Beats Electronics has appointed Matthew Costello as its new COO. He was previously Head Of Group Strategic Development for IKEA

Lady Gaga has parted company with her long time manager Troy Carter, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Warners have made two new appointments: Dirk Ewald becomes SVP of Global Catalogue Management;  and in New York former Nokia man Jonathan Dworkin has been appointed SVP for Digital Strategy & Business Development; Meanwhile, Warner Music's European VP of digital strategy and business development, Leanne Sharman, is to depart the major.

Ticketmaster has appointed Nick Griffiths, previously with SkyIQ, as Sales Operations Director; Tommy Tyekiff from Ingenious Media, will become VP for Business Transformation at the start of next year; and Nihal Pekbeken is joining the ticketing firm from NBC Universal, and will become VP Global Marketing and Creative Services. Internally, current Marketing Director Dan Pearce will be promoted to the role of VP Marketing & Business Development for Ticketmaster's ticket resale business; Andrew Parsons, currently VP Sales, will become VP Music & Comedy; and Doug Smith, VP Client Services, will expand his remit taking on responsibility for the operations team within the business.

Live Nation reaps summer success

Live Nation has reported that attendance at its concerts worldwide was up 27% year-on-year this summer, resulting in revenues 15% higher than a year ago at $2.26 billion, with revenue increases in the firm's touring, sponsorship and ticketing divisions. And while profits were down 24% to $43.8 million, that included a $36 million charge and exceeded analyst expectations by a margin. Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino said: "Consumer demand has come back strong for us this year, as we have had attendance growth across concerts globally, from new artists to the legends and everyone in between".


Cumbria's CockRock festival won't take place in 2014, but also mightn't happen ever again. CockRock organisers have released a statement describing the festival's future as "uncertain", adding that "over the last few years as with many festivals we have suffered financially, this coupled with a number of unwelcome restrictions that have been placed on the festival has meant that we have struggled in many ways" saying  "It's with great sadness and a very heavy heart that we must now announce that CockRock will not run in 2014. At this moment in time we cannot say if we will return again in the future, we hope this is not the end but at the moment the future for CockRock is very uncertain. We're truly gutted to say we won't be running next year and that our lovely town that we are very proud to live in no longer has a large capacity music festival".

London-based Field Day will next year lengthen from its erstwhile single-day duration to a 7-8 Jun weekender. Tom Baker of Eat Your Own Ears, who co-host the event with Bugged Out!, BleeD and Lanzarote, said "I am thrilled that Field Day is now taking place over two days in London's Victoria Park. It's been a long time coming. I can't wait to reveal who's playing... so keep your eyes on @fielddaylondon for more super exciting news very soon!" Super early bird tickets are already available for day one of the festival, so get them via the Field Day site.

575,000 public votes have been totted up, and the finalists in the UK Festival Awards are now out - as picked by the great British festival fans. The ceremony will be at the Roundhouse in London's Camden on Monday December 2nd and you can see all the nominees here.Tickets for the UK Festival Conference & Awards start at just £40 and are available through the UK Festival Conference & Awards’ official ticketing partner Eventbrite, to order please visit

Hop Farm organiser Vince Power has released a statement to say that his event will be making a return next year, but it will be in Tunbridge Wells. The event was cancelled this summer due to poor ticket sales and was due to host My Bloody Valentine, Rodriguez, The Horrors, Jimmy Cliff, The Cribs, First Aid Kit, Dinosaur Jr, The Presidents Of The United States Of America, Martha Wainwright, Edwyn Collins, and more. The festival which started in 2008 was set to be held at the The Hop Farm Family Park which will be holding the other Hop Farm event for 20,000 people next year. Read more on Efestivals.

Spotify looks to raise new funds

Spotify is raising another round of investment. According to Sky News, Spotify bosses are talking to California-based Technology Crossover Ventures about a possible $200 million investment that would give the finance firm a stake in the streaming music company.

Gaga goes into space

Lady Gaga has announced that she will perform a gig p in space: She's been asked to be the first official popstar to sing on a space-bound vehicle by New Mexico festival Zero G Colony, which takes place (itself on Planet Earth) in 2015. Gaga will blast off on a Virgin Galactic SpaceShip Two, where she will sing a single track once she hits conditions of zero gravity.

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Ministry asks Mayor Boris for protection

Ministry Of Sound boss Lohan Presencer has asked Boris Johnson for a binding agreement confirming that a planned major residential development next to the venue in South London will not have future repercussions on his operation's licence. Ministry had previously succeeded in blocking the plans by property developer Oakmayne to build a big residential complex next to the superclub, after the property firm's proposals were unanimously rejected by Southwark's planning committee, with Ministry successfully arguing that it was an important employer in the area, that it played an important role in the capital's clubbing culture and local community, and that the planned residential development would cause problems because future residents would be certain to make demands on licensing officials regarding noise at the venue. Now London Mayor Boris Johnson's office has agreed to reconsider the decision, placing the club under threat once again. 

Presencer called for agreement by the Mayor in a;letter to the London Standard and also said he wanted a legal agreement that Oakmayne will install sound-proofing into its new apartments (as was promised as part of its planning application) saying he wants a "legal agreement that guarantees that everything that is being promised, such as these acoustically sealed windows, is not reneged on at a later date. The second thing we want is a legal mechanism put in place to ensure the current noise levels will be able to lawfully continue as they are". The letter goes on: "Ministry of Sound has been at the heart of London for a quarter of a century. We've earned our right to stay here. Over the past decade all of London's big clubs have closed as a result of redevelopment. We're the last man standing. Do you want to bring the shutters down on nightclubs in London for good? Please Boris, do the right thing for London, don't stop the music".

SFX snap up Electric Zoo

The recently floated SFX, the now EDM-focused live firm, has bought Made Event, the company behind the Electric Zoo festival,. Confirming the deal, SFX boss Robert Sillerman said"The acquisition of Made is strategically important for SFX, as it establishes a strong foothold for us in the New York City region. Co-founders Mike Bindra and Laura De Palma are the ultimate industry professionals, and our management team will benefit greatly from their years of experience". As previously reported, the New York event was cut short by one day this year after two drug-related deaths.

Ticket tout sentenced for tax evasion

A London ticket tout had been handed a suspended prison sentence after failing to pay nearly £200,000 in tax. Donald Tiffin, of Park Road, Hampton Wick, had deposits of more than £915,000 in his own bank account and a further £656,000 had been paid into his girlfriend’s account.  The 63-year-old earned the cash by selling a range of tickets and packages to events including Wimbledon, the Champions League and the 2009 British Lions tour of South Africa and HM Revenue & Customs said the 63 year old failed to pay a total of £193,000 in income tax and VAT. Tiffin had admitted two counts of cheating the public revenue. He was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment, suspended for two years, for failing to pay income tax, and to 18 months, also suspended for two years, for failing to pay VAT. He was ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid community work and a compensation order in the sum of £193,000 was issued when he appeared at the Old Bailey.

JASRAC faces monopoly questions after court ruling

The Tokyo High Court has overturned a previous ruling by the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) and has concluded that the Japanese Society for Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers (JASRAC) violates the country’s anti-monopoly law. The court says the JFTC ruling in 2012 this was not a monopoly was “a mistake.”

Michigan lawmaker seeks to make scalping legal

A Michigan politician says he wants to make it legal to sell sporting event or concert tickets above face value and has introduced legislation that would repeal a 1931 state law that bans ticket scalping unless it's authorised by the venue or event operators. Republican Rep. Tim Kelly of Saginaw Township said he is lining up bipartisan support for his bill. He says it's a common-sense measure that would let the free market decide the price of a ticket saying "An individual who buys a ticket to a sporting event or concert owns that ticket, and they should have every right to sell it if they so choose" adding "This legislation, quite literally, is about allowing the man on the street to sell tickets at fair market value to willing buyers. It creates more fairness while providing some relief to our already overburdened court system."

Kelly said here is no reason for the government to interfere in a transaction between a willing buyer and willing seller. The legislation now goes to a House committee for consideration. And one of Kelly's Democratic colleagues said allowing ticket re-sales is a matter of fairness. Rep. Doug Geiss of Taylor introduced a bill last term that would have limited price markups on ticket websites to up to 10 percent more than face value and also require online resellers to publish the original price of the ticket. That bill did not reah the committee hearing stage and Geiss said he now supports Kelly's proposal saying "As the law currently stands, it doesn't make sense why can I go online and charge somebody $500 for a $50 ticket, but if I sell it in front of a stadium, if I sell it for $51, I can have that ticket confiscated from me," Geiss said.

Local promoters, arenas and music and sporting venues are reviewing Kelly's scalping bill although most remain firmly opposed.

YouTube Awards

Another day, another Awards show: The YouTube Music Awards are out with actor Jason Schwartzman and musician Reggie Watts presiding over the unscripted and unrehearsed "frenetic ceremony" with each winner presented with a gold-plated DMCA takedown notice which is faintly amusing. Who won? Well the six were:

Artist Of The Year: Eminem

Video Of The Year: Girls' Generation - I Got A Boy

YouTube Phenomenon: Walk Off The Earth +  KRNFX I Knew You Were Trouble

Innovation of the Year: DeStorm - See Me Standing

Response Of The Year: Lindsey Stirling and Pentatonix - Radioactive

Breakthrough Of The Year: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

Indie actress Greta Gerwig kicked off proceedings at the sprawling Pier 36 venue in New York, performing in a live video for Arcade Fire and their new song Afterlife and Lady Gaga performed her single Dope for the first time. The ceremony was streamed live.