…as AVRS is set to commence picketing
A leading consultant in copyright administration and collective management, Mr. Rob Hooijer, has expressed optimism that with the right support and focus, the Audio-Visuals Right Society of Nigeria will in no time become the collective management organization of choice on the continent.
Hooijer, with 45 years experience working with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and other rights management organizations such as SAMRO, CISAC, and IFPI made this assertion during a 3-day working visit to AVRS on behalf of Artistas Intérpretes, Sociedad de Gestión, AISGE to access its progress and facilitate co-operation.
At a meeting with the AVRS Chairman, Mr. Mahmood Ali-Balogun; the acting General Manager, Mrs. Bukola Adeyemi and some directors of AVRS, Hooijer expressed satisfaction with what he met on ground and was optimistic that with the right support the organization will in no time be the collective management organization of choice in Africa.
The expert also disclosed that he was able to meet with the DG NCC, Mr. John Asein, in Abuja to ascertain the current position of the Nigerian Copyright Act and the government’s intention to provide legislation in line with Nigeria’s ratification of the Beijing Treaty.
Speaking earlier, Ali-Balogun had said that the visit by Hooijer afforded AVRS the opportunity to be acquainted with current trends and workable strategies in the area of collective management administration and governance. The filmmaker and culture advocate who described the visit simply as “rewarding, enlightening and mutually beneficial” hinted that the AVRS would as from March 1 embark on massive picketing of organizations that have refused to be licensed as users of audio-visual works.
“We have written to them, visited them and reached them through so many other means but a few of them have refused to be licensed. It is time to wield the big stick. We are going to commence picketing of those organizations beginning from March 1. We have put all the machinery in motion to ensure total success. Those who use audio-visual content must be ready to be licensed,” he said.
The visit was also to assess the current status of AVRS taking into account its licensing activities, opportunities, staffing, office accommodation, IT infrastructure, lobbying activities, transparency, accountability to its members (particularly active members) and governance. It was also to identify training opportunities and subjects that would benefit AVRS and which AISGE may be able to assist with when holding its seminar in Madrid in the summer of this year.