Chinese authorities have launched a campaign against online music copyright infringement and asked streaming service providers to remove unlicensed music before the end of this month.
Online music streaming services will not be allowed to provide unlicensed free music from August on, the National Copyright Administration (NCA) said. Those who violate the rules will be punished severely.
Duan Yuping, an official from the NCA, said the violation of copyright is common in China.
“(Music streaming providers) infringed the rights of royalty holders, disturbed the order of the online music market, and also impacted the development of our music industry.”
Industry insiders have welcomed the move. They believe that the ban will restore confidence in the copyright system and attract more talents back to the music industry.
Wang Fang, a bass player from a rock band, said the new rules will protect their work and encourage them to write more songs.
Some believe the regulation is crucial for the industry’s prospect.
“Record labels are making less money and people are streaming online music rather than buying CDs. I think streaming services will, in the future, operate like labels, to produce and charge for copyrighted contents,” said Chen Xianjiang, founder of Rechord.
Authorities said that they will offer users options on music downloading and those options will be ready in the coming month.