INDIE LABELS THREATEN TO BOYCOTT MTV

You'd better record those White Stripes videos now...

White Stripes, Prodigy, CRAIG DAVID and BASEMENT JAXX are among a huge number of artists set to boycott MTV in Europe in an escalating row over how much money the music channel pays to broadcast videos.

MTV Networks Europe has set a deadline of March 31 for independent record labels representing artists to agree to a new rights contract worth less than half of the previous deal, reports The Guardian. If agreement isn’t reached, the music channel could lose access to around 20 per cent of releases.

And in a further twist for MTV, Sanctuary Records, the large-scale independent that represents reality TV star [a][/a], is also set to join the protest.

A group called Video Performance Limited has in the past negotiated with MTV on behalf of all the independent labels. A deal, which expired in 2002, was worth £1.9million annually for the labels. VPL rejected a much-reduced offer of £840,000 and MTV have now called on the labels to bypass VPL and deal with MTV themselves.

The majority of independent record companies across the continent have agreed to reject MTV’s offer.

“The independents are saying we think our music is worth more in value. We have supplied content that has helped MTV become a multi-million pound business,” said Charlie Wale, director of business affairs at Telstar, home of Craig David and others.

“The music industry is going through a period of change,” he continued. “We labels are trying to maximise revenue from our product and distributors are trying to maximise content and there is a clash.”