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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Japan: annual copyright fees on iPod Sales?

Japanese government has decided to introduce annual copyright fees on the sales of iPods, hard disk recorders and other portable music device. In 2005, Japanese recording industry made a serious effort to introduce “iPod tax” but it was not successful as government committee members could not reach a unanimous decision. The money collected will be given to singers, song writers and record publishers. International Herald Tribune reports:

The Agency of Cultural Affairs has not yet decided the amount of the fee, but it would likely be around 100 yen (95 cents) per device for an annual total about 1 billion yen (about $9.5 million), according to the Asahi Shimbun. The proceeds would go to recording companies, songwriters and artists.

Older devices, such as minidisk and DVD recorders, are already subject to a copyright fee.

Representatives for the agency and Apple Japan Inc. could not be reached for comment, as offices were closed Tuesday for a national holiday.

Electronic makers of Japan are not happy with this decision. In 2005, they vehemently opposed the effort and this time it will repeat. Earlier, the government did not want to include hard disk recorder in the proposal. It was included less than a month.

Related article:

International Herald Tribune

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