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Home » Electronic Media Services » Welcome to the Electronic Media Services Division Focus Issue

Welcome to the Electronic Media Services Division Focus Issue

  -  AFM Electronic Media Services Division Assistant Director

It is my honor to welcome you to this year’s issue of the International Musician focused on electronic media and the Electronic Media Services Division (EMSD). This division is charged with serving and protecting the interests of nonsymphonic recording musicians. (AFM Symphonic Services Division represents symphony, opera, ballet, and chamber orchestra electronic media projects.)

Two years ago, I wrote an article in this issue explaining the differences between our film and live television agreements. Given the current state of the industry, with dual ongoing strikes, the information about which agreements apply and when is more relevant now than ever. A refresher on the differences between the types of work that fall under contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) and those that do not can be found on page 20.

The AFM and major record labels concluded negotiations for a successor Sound Recording Labor Agreement (SRLA) in January, which was ratified in March. Check out the article on page 13 for a recap of the changes that were bargained.

The recap mentions some internet streaming parameters that have been bargained into the SRLA. Last year, we published a flow chart to help people understand how our internet streaming contracts work. Since those parameters have shifted through bargaining, an updated guide to streaming contracts can be found on page 12.

Our collective bargaining agreements are living documents. The parameters of recording and the exhibition of musicians and their music are ever changing. To make sure you are up to speed on what questions to ask a potential producer to find the correct agreement (as well as what all those agreements are), check out “EMSD 101” on page 18.

A special thank you to the Recording Musicians Association (RMA) for their assistance and on-the-ground guidance in contract negotiations and administration. Thank you to RMA International President Marc Sazer, as well, for his piece below on the appalling continued practice of yellow dog contracts.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the hardworking EMSD staff on both coasts for their dedication to their roles in enforcing our agreements. An updated list of our staff and their functions is available on page 16. I am immensely proud of the work my colleagues perform every day.

Of course, I am also proud of the work of the electronic media staff in our Canadian Office, under the direction of Vice President from Canada Alan Willaert and Executive Director Liana White.

Finally, I would like to thank our in-house counsels, Jennifer Garner and Russ Naymark, for their efforts assisting in negotiations, contract enforcement, resolving outstanding claims, and lending their wealth of knowledge to the many agreements that this division covers for the benefit of our working musicians.

I hope you find valuable information about the EMSD in this issue. Do not hesitate to reach out if you have questions.