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Stirling MP Condemns Copyright-by-Stealth Charge Faced by Stirling Hospitality


Categories: Culture and Tourism, Local Business

Stirling MP Alyn Smith has condemned a slew of copyright charges forced on struggling Stirling hospitality businesses, as the sector attempts to survive the ongoing pandemic.

Businesses in Callander have been contacted by the Motion Picture Licensing Company Ltd, a private organisation which collects commission on the recovery of due fees for use of copyrighted materials.

The main crux of the surprise enforcement stems from the interpretation of hotel rooms as ‘public spaces’ – with any TV viewing of copyright material thus counting as a ‘public performance.’

However, this is a murky legal precedent which may be open to challenge by industry bodies.

Alyn Smith MP said:

‘Scotland’s world-class hospitality sector is trying to survive Covid-19 – the very last thing our local businesses need are hidden stealth charges, based on flimsy legal precedents.

‘Hotels and other accommodation providers in Callander help boost the local Stirling economy, and are a valuable asset to Scotland’s tourism offer.

‘I’ve written to the UK Government and relevant Scottish Government agencies regarding these letters, and urge a pragmatic approach to all involved. I urge any other business which has received similar, unexpected copyright enforcement letters to get in touch with my office –’