‘SABC pours salt into artists’ wounds as it takes food out their ...

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‘SABC pours salt into artists’ wounds as it takes food out their mouths’

The broadcaster is worsening the already dire situation of performers by refusing to pay royalties, says Sampra

Sibusio Mkwanazi

In an ongoing moral and legal battle, the South African Music Performance Rights Association (Sampra) is continuing to fight for recording artists and record companies by instituting legal action against the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).

Sampra is applying to the courts to compel the public broadcaster to pay to use its artists’ music. Failure by the SABC to do so will inevitably lead to an interdict prohibiting it from playing tracks from the association’s repertoire — 99% of all tracks in SA.

During a financially crippling period due to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, the SABC is being accused of directly endangering recording artists’ livelihoods and effectively ending careers by refusing to pay for Needletime Rights royalties, amounting to more than R250m over more than five years...

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