The world's going mad...

Steve KowalskiSteve Kowalski

At work today I was busy reading comments that had been posted on the MacUser forums about an article that was forecasting what may, or may not, happen over the coming year. KrisJones2 wrote the following:

I was amused to read today that shops selling musical instruments have to have a Performing Rights Society licence, just in case a potential purchaser should happen to play a riff from a well-known copyrighted song on guitar etc, before they purchase.

I naturally thought that it was an urban myth of some-kind so I put Performing Rights Society into Google News and the article in question had appeared in my local paper about Jones Music Store.

Steve Kowalski has been ordered to pay £114, which is based on the floor space of the shop, in case anyone, when checking an instrument plays something that is “an identifiable piece of music”.

This reminded me of the scene in Waynes World. Wayne finally has enough money for the guitar of his dreams and is in the music store, he’s about to start playing “Stairway to Heaven” when the assistant points to a sign which reads “No ‘Stairway to Heaven’”. That was apparently because music store patrons were sick of hearing it.

What will the Performing Rights Society do next? Will they put a sticker over your mouth if you are caught whistling as you’re walking down the street. Or maybe they just want potential purchasers of instruments to just play scales.

  • Posted on Tuesday, 03 January 2006
  • Tagged with news