Friday, August 01, 2014

Vince Power: Hop Farm Fest relied on hope

You'll recall Vince Power, regarded as one of the most competent music festival impresarios despite the odd problem here and there, and despite the Phoenix Festival. Oh, and having to pull Hop Farm Fest last year. And those years when Leeds ended in fire.

Still, he's been running festivals for years, so at least he knows what he's doing, right?

What's that, Kent Messenger?

The founder of the Hop Farm Music Festival has been banned from playing music in public after it was revealed events were hosted without a licence.
That's quite a big oversight. Especially for someone who has been running festivals back when it was possible to do one without a sodding ferris wheel and silent disco.

But just an oversight, yes? Embarrassing but maybe an envelope unposted?
However, at the court it was claimed Power infringed copyright at The Hop Farm Festival at the events in 2009
Well, that was the second year. Maybe the assumption was that last year's licence was still valid?
Okay. Two small oversights.
and 2012.
Well, that looks a bit systemic. You kind-of hope that Power had actually gone to all the trouble of getting a licence last year, and it turned out to be such a complex process he had no time to do anything else.

Still, I'm sure that Power was able to clear up why he ran a festival for four years without a licence for playing music. Right?
PRS claimed that Power was the “guiding will and mind” of the companies and authorised or directed the alleged acts of infringement.

But when they took legal moves against him he failed to file a defence to the action with the result that PRS was this week given judgment against him by Mr Justice Birss at London’s High Court.
There's a secondary question here: if a barber shop in Golders Green switches on the radio without a PRS licence, they're being swarmed over by the royalties company in seconds. How the hell did a festival run by a large company manage to get away without having a PRS licence for so long?

[Thanks to @RichardButton04 for the tip]