back to article Sacré bleu! Apple, Nokia, Samsung et al end their three-year sulk over 'home taping' tax

Three years after stomping out, big tech manufacturers have returned to talk to the French government about private copying levies. In France, an official working group, La Commission de la Copie Privée, sets the rules on which products will have copying levies slapped on them. Manufacturers and importers also had seats at the …

  1. phil dude

    A complex political analysis follows.



    1. g e

      Plus: "that lose earnings when copies are made"


  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    More pork..

    Some comedians in Belgium did already demonstrate that at least the Belgian system is totally shot.

    They had some records produced by house hold appliances and then tracked what happened to royalty payments. It was both funny and infuriating at the same time. The larger these organisations get (and they do get fat quickly on a guaranteed percentage on something they don't deserve), the quicker a gap appears between reality and a profitable interpretation thereof.

    Avoid, avoid, avoid.

  3. x 7

    so soon the taxes go up....

  4. Tromos

    How are the royalties split?

    People who buy a box of blank DVDs need to know. After all, it wouldn't do to copy purely music torrents or purely movie torrents to the DVDs as some of the levy would go to the wrong people.

    1. big_D Silver badge

      Re: How are the royalties split?

      And I use my DVDs to make backups of the photos that I made, I haven't received my levies back yet...

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I supposed that ...

    If you are being taxed, then you may as well benefit by obtaining the product, so anyone know a good source of free music and videos ?

    Do you also get a rebate when you just write your own data to the DVD instead - for example a backup of your PC or your save your own family pictures of that recent holiday ?

    1. Steve Evans

      Re: I supposed that ...

      It raises an interesting question... Does this mean that video/music piracy is legal in France? After all you have paid a tax which assumed you are going to pirate something on the media, which rather blows a hole through claims of "theft" and denying the right holders of their income...

      (Yes, I know, I live in a dream world which is far too logical).

      1. heyrick Silver badge

        Re: I supposed that ...

        "Does this mean that video/music piracy is legal in France?"

        No, because the system is beyond corrupt with big media expecting to be paid for sales of blank media for something that the populace might do. It's an easier way to make cash than coming up with customer friendly legal content sources.

        On the other hand, given as I have already paid a contribution for my "illegal" downloads, if I find a song I like (surprisingly hard these days) on YouTube and it ends up on my phone, I do so with zero guilt...

  6. Jack of Shadows Silver badge

    No one represents the consumer, of course.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Laws of unintended consequences

    If the French raise the tax on blank media then buyers will simply get them from other parts of the EU that don't have this levy.

    It would not be too far out to imagine Autoroute service stations close to but not in France selling blank media. As there is no border controls anymore due to Schengen zoom and you are in La Belle France with the booty in your car and not a Gendarme in sight to stop you.

    The same would go for Cross Channel Ferries.

    This could end up costing them money.

    IMHO, these so called 'Artists' rights orgs are totally corrupt and should die.

    I tend to buy CD's etc direct from the Artist wherever possible. I'll have my £££ ready when I see Ian Anderson next week. That way I know that my money goes to the right place and not to some crack smoking rights exec.

  8. Semaj

    Blank Media

    Is this still even a thing?

    I'm a bit of a Luddite with all this streaming stuff and even I don't remember the last time I used "blank media" to back anything other than holiday photos up on.

    1. Raumkraut

      Re: Blank Media

      You don't use any hard-drives, SD cards, or memory sticks? I don't know about France, but in some jurisdictions those certainly count as "blank media".

      Makes me wonder if they've also lobbied for the tax to apply to RAM as well. After all, I can create a logical disk entirely in RAM, and store copies of files in there.

    2. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

      Re: Blank Media

      My daughter told me recently that several media creation packages (she mentioned iMovie and Creative Suite/Cloud) are now removing the ability to write optical media from their most recent iterations. Many laptop/ultrabooks no longer even come with optical storage devices. It really upset her, as she has no desire to use the Cloud as a transmission path for private media she's editing for a friend.

      It strikes me as if optical media is becoming a bit of a pariah. I still don't trust flash memory devices for long term storage. We need some new long-term storage media!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Blank Media

        I still don't trust flash memory devices for long term storage.

        To be fair, you shouldn't trust recordable optical media for long term storage either.

        1. GitMeMyShootinIrons

          Re: Blank Media

          "To be fair, you shouldn't trust recordable optical media for long term storage either."

          Is there a USB connected wax cylinder writer?

  9. TheProf

    A finger in every tarte

    This will work out well for Sony and possibly other companies too.

    They produce music CDs. They produce blank CDs and they produce the CD drives used to burn the copies of the music they produced in the first place. For which they will receive compensation.


  10. Alan Denman

    Ink tax?

    Manufacturers already have their own 10,000% levy there!

    Thing have moved on guys.

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