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Reps pledge to secure Mohbad’s compensation, royalties

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Reps pledge to secure Mohbad’s compensation, royalties

The House of Representatives on Wednesday assured the family of late Ilerioluwa Aloba, popularly known as Mohbad, of its commitment to secure proper compensation and royalties from his musical works.

 

Reps Olumide Osoba, Chairman of the House Committee on Justice, said this when the Copy Rights Commission appeared before it and the Musical Copyright Society of Nigeria in Abuja.

 

The appearance was an interactive session on the rights and royalties related to Mohbad’s music.

This is sequel to a motion of urgent public importance earlier moved by Rep. Babajimi Benson (APC-Lagos) to secure the royalties of Mohbad’s songs and lyrics.

Osoba emphasised the significance of securing compensation and royalties, acknowledging that these payments were essential sources of income for musicians.

He said such wouod enable artists to sustain their careers, create new music, and build a future within the industry.

He however, said that the current system often fall short in adequately protecting and providing for young musicians concerning their royalty rights.

He said many emerging artists face challenges when negotiating fair royalty agreements, particularly when dealing with major record labels.

He said this often wield significant power and could impose unfavorable terms, resulting in artists receiving only a fraction of the royalties they deserved.

He said,”it is crucial to recognise that young musicians are often not well-informed about their rights when entering into contracts.”

He said such knowledge gap placed them at a disadvantage, as they might not fully grasp the complex legal intricacies surrounding royalty rights.

He said the responsibility rests on society to bridge the knowledge gap and ensure that young musicians were aware of their rights while having access to legal support that safeguards their interests.

According to him, to address these issues, it is vital to work towards implementing stronger regulations and support systems within the industry.

This includes advocating for more transparent and standardized contracts for all artists, irrespective of their age or experience, to level the playing field and prevent the exploitation of young talent.

He further said that efforts should be made to provide accessible legal advice and assistance to young musicians through organizations, unions, or educational programs.

He also said that equipping them with the knowledge and resources needed to understand and negotiate contracts will empower them to protect their rights and secure fair compensation for their creative contributions.

“Additionally, there is a need to adapt the music industry to the digital age. While digital streaming platforms have revolutionized music consumption and distribution, young musicians often struggle to earn a substantial income due to outdated royalty structures.

“Advocating for revised royalty models that accurately reflect the value of music in the streaming era is essential.

He said, the committee is committed to this responsibility, adding that they have requested relevant information regarding the circumstances of his death and the measures in place to secure his royalties and other benefits,.

This he said is with a deadline of next week to expedite their action on this assignment.

He said the committee also welcomes any other information or challenges hindering the implementation of the rights and royalties of musicians.

He said the committee would ensure that the rights of young musicians regarding royalties is of paramount importance.

He said collective efforts should be made to guarantee that they receive fair compensation for their hard work and artistic contributions.

This according to him is by promoting transparency, education, and change within the industry, a future can be created where young musicians have a fair chance to thrive and build sustainable careers.

It would be recalled that Mohbad, passed away on Sept 12 under mysterious circumstances.

He said this underscored the urgency of addressing issues related to the rights and protection of royalties for young and upcoming artists in our country.

Entertainment

Burna Boy ventures into movie industry

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Grammy-winning singer, Damini Ogulu, aka Burna Boy, has ventured into the movie industry.

 

The ‘African Giant’ crooner is set to make his debut as an executive producer in Black Mic Mac’s upcoming movie ‘3 Cold Dishes.’

 

Burna Boy would executively produce the movie through Spaceship Films, a company he co-founded alongside Bose Ogulu, his mother.

The movie will be co-produced by Black Mic Mac, Ifind, Alma Prods, Asurf Films, and Martian Network.

Directed by Asurf Oluseyi and written by Tomi Adesina, ‘3 Cold Dishes’ is a story set across Nigeria, the Republic of Benin, and Côte d’Ivoire.

“This film is a testament to the strength and resilience of its characters, and it took us blood and sweat to get it to this stage,” the director, Asurf Oluseyi stated in an interview with Variety.

The film boasts of star-studded casts such as Osas Ighodaro, Femi Jacobs, Wale Ojo, Ruby Akubueze, Brutus Richards as well as some Ivorian and Senegalese actors.

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OpenAI stole my voice for Chatgpt-4o– Scarlett Johansson

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Actor Scarlett Johansson has on Monday that she was “shocked, angered and in disbelief” that OpenAI CEO Sam Altman would use a synthetic voice released with an update to ChatGPT “so eerily similar” to hers.

 

The statement comes after OpenAI said it is hitting the pause button on the update after comparisons with a fictional voice assistant portrayed in the quasi-dystopian film “Her” by Johansson.

 

The retreat by OpenAI follows a backlash to the artificial voice, known as Sky, which critics described as being overly familiar with users and sounded as if it had emerged from a male developer’s fantasy. It was widely mocked for its flirtatious tone.

“We’ve heard questions about how we chose the voices in ChatGPT, especially Sky,” OpenAI said in a post on social media Monday. “We are working to pause the use of Sky while we address them.”

Johansson said Altman offered to hire her last September to voice the ChatGPT 4.0 system. She said she declined the offer for “personal reasons.”

“Two days before the ChatGPT 4.0 demo was released, Mr. Altman contacted my agent, asking me to reconsider. Before we could connect, the system was out there.”

Johansson said she hired legal counsel, and said OpenAI “reluctantly agreed” to take down the “Sky” voice after her counsel sent Altman two letters.

“In a time when we are all grappling with deepfakes and the protection of our own likeness, our own work, our own identities, I believe these are questions that deserve absolute clarity. I look forward to resolution in the form of transparency and the passage of appropriate legislation to help ensure that individual rights are protected,” Johansson wrote.

The voice in question is not derived from Johansson’s, the company said in a blog post Sunday, but instead “belongs to a different professional actress using her own natural speaking voice.”

Altman reiterated the company’s stance that “Sky” was voiced by a different actress in a statement Monday, following Johansson’s claims.

“The voice of Sky is not Scarlett Johansson’s, and it was never intended to resemble hers,” Altman said. “We cast the voice actor behind Sky’s voice before any outreach to Ms. Johansson. Out of respect for Ms. Johansson, we have paused using Sky’s voice in our products. We are sorry to Ms. Johansson that we didn’t communicate better.”

OpenAI said that with each of its AI voices, it tried to create “an approachable voice that inspires trust,” one that contains a “rich tone” and is “natural and easy to listen to.” The ChatGPT voice mode that used the Sky voice had not yet been widely released, but videos from the product announcement and teasers of OpenAI employees speaking with it went viral online last week.

Some who heard Sky derided it as perhaps too easy to listen to. Last week, the controversy inspired a segment on The Daily Show in which senior correspondent Desi Lydic described Sky as a “Hot robot baby voice.”

“This is clearly programmed to feed dudes’ egos,” Lydic said. “You can really tell that a man built this tech.”

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