[JURIST] The European Commission [official website] plans to introduce a proposal to extend copyright protection [press release] for music performers from 50 to 95 years, Internal Market Commissioner Charlie McCreevy [official website] announced Thursday. The proposal will ensure greater protections for "session musicians" who recorded music in the late 1950s and will soon lose their royalty income from radio play of their songs as their copyrights expire. Under current EU law, music composers hold copyright of their work for their entire lives plus 70 years, while music performers only hold copyright of their performances for 50 years.
McCreevy also announced that the Commission will examine the levies [press release; EU backgrounder] applied by different EU countries to blank compact discs, cassettes, hard drives, and other equipment consumers often use to copy artists' work. EUObserver has more.