"Calling for Justice in Digital Music (Zoom Live Meeting Recap)"

          Since the world is changing into a digital era, the impact for it is becoming serious as well. Because of this transformation, everyone is working under the technical influence. Our association, MDCA has held a zoom live meeting regarding the music industry under the topic, “Calling for Justice in Digital Music” together with the panelists who are already experienced in their respective fields in order to make a positive impact during this pandemic.
         First and foremost, our panelists are from music industry, Non-profit organization relating with the music rights (MPRO), digital music platform (JOOX). JOOX, a music streaming service owned by Tencent, launched in January 2015. It owns the biggest market share in Asia. Myanmar Performance Rights Organization (MPRO), contributes the rights to the original song composers. Myanmar Vocal Artists Association (MVA) is founded in May 2019 as a collective management organization. Music Hub, founded in 2015, serves as a content provider that provides services to VAS services, CRPT to telcos.
       Starting off, our panelists revealed the state of transforming from physical distribution to digital distribution. There was an era for physical distribution which we can only be entertained from CDs and radios. However, nowadays, the world is completely changed into digital transformation and also people are more engaged with the digital technology. So, during this alternation from physical to digital distribution, associations and organizations from the music industry faced a lot of difficulties, especially in the period of Covid-19.
For instance, tapes, CDs and DVDs were highly demanded before since the technology is not well developed yet. Sadly, non-copy righted CDs took place instead of original ones. Nonetheless, the new type of distribution is adopted due to the digital and internet improvement. In addition, CMO (Collective Management Organization) and aggregators were not quite dealing systematically, so there were some problems and difficulties before. From the other productive perspective, they were able to collect the performance rights for the original owners, mainly from the FM and radio stations. In this way, they could take the great advantages of this pandemic.
        The view of digital platform owner is similar to the fact mentioned above. Back then, they struggled a lot to make a better digital transformation as there were not much CMOs. Digital music platforms only operate with aggregators and there are some times they cannot upload the music on their platform when they have no rights for that music. From the perspective of platform owner, the user’s behaviors are important for them as well. Unlike in local, those kinds of platforms mostly run with aggregators or record labels.
Back in the days, music production functioned with physical sales. Singers cooperate with producers and sells the albums instead, or some singers produce their own albums and distribute them. Gradually, the physical sales brought to an end along with the people changing their lifestyles. Plus, the individuals also use the digital platforms and this behavior of lifestyle spread worldwide. For the vocalists, it is such a great impact that their songs get better engagement as a consequence of digital influence. But their income is getting lower since the physical sales are not working anymore. Furthermore, they emphasis more on the digital platforms. In local, Myanmar aggregators create the rules and regulations to collect the loyalty fees. In that way, the whole music industry will be enhanced very soon.
          From the perspective of an aggregator, they have lots of impact, benefits as well as demerits for this transformation. The proper rights management in local is still weak compared to the ecosystem. Accordingly, unless they do not try to get the proper right management, Myanmar music industry will be definitely improved in the meantime. And also, the record labels for the proper right management has not been fully functioning yet, means, the proper right for this country is not still not well-organized.
        On account of this, there can be solutions for the proper right management if there is any association or platform set up the government. There are some differences when compared with the international music ecosystem. In other countries, the organizations majorly tackle the performance rights in the first place and they have the rights in the respective record labels. However, this kind of program has not been developed yet but local music associations are trying at best to handle the performance rights problems.
Diving deeper into the online discussion, our panelists continued to talk about the working styles and behaviors contrasting the international and local associations. In the other countries, they have agencies, so called record labels and we can directly contact them if we want the music, performing with the payper stream model. In Myanmar, we are currently running with the premium model. Moreover, JOOX is now seeking the market to penetrate the music industry by expanding a new program called payper stream.
         Towards a new normal situation, there can be also new trends for the music industry. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we can see a huge change obviously, to give an instance, live shows and concerts are not permitted to be held and everything is operating virtually. Consequently, it has a greater percentage that there can be more virtual or online events and livestreaming programs. In this way, the local music industry can thrive well if we are running it systematically.
           Last but not least, on behalf of the whole music industry, the chairman of MyanmarPro mentions that the local music industry needs to be performed more digitally so that the domestic fields can keep abreast with the global associations. In the near future, the copy right rules and regulations which are empowered by the ministry and government are going to be released as well.
       To sum up, the local digital music industry will operate very effectively if the aggregators and the digital platforms enhance the cooperation for the higher digital quality platforms. If we take this global pandemic, Covid 19, as an advantage, there will be lots of fringe benefits not only for the digital music industry but also for the whole country. Thereby, for the new normal situation, the music industry can operate methodically as a superior comeback after speeding up during this Covid-19 pandemic period.

Myanmar Digital Contents Association

:Bld 19, #06-704/705, MICT Park, Hlaing Township, Yangon, Myanmar

: +959 894 7977 74

Copyright © 2020 MDCA. All rights reserved.