Organizations like ASCAP, BMI, and the RIAA have banded together

By Jessica Goodman
Updated December 14, 2016 at 04:12 PM EST
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Credit: DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images

Nineteen different music organizations banded together to write an open letter to president-elect Donald Trump, congratulating him on his win and urging him to enforce intellectual property laws during his term as President.

“Congratulations on your election to serve as the 45th President of the United States,” the letter says. “We look forward to working with you and your Administration on behalf of American music — one of our nation’s most valuable forms of art and intellectual property, and a powerful driver of high-quality U.S. jobs and exports.”

The letter — signed by organizations including Broadcast Music, Inc., Nashville Songwriters’ Association International, The Recording Academy, Recording Industry Association of America, ASCAP, and the Songwriters Guild of America — requests that Trump honor his promises to enforce laws that protect intellectual property, quoting his stance on the issue: “Intellectual property is a driving force in today’s global economy of constant innovation.”

The organizations’ requests are in line with past initiatives to push tech giants to do more to prevent piracy. They write, “With the rise of the digital economy, it has become even more critical that we protect intellectual property rights and preserve freedom of contract rather than create regulatory barriers to creativity, growth, and innovation.”

It’s no coincidence that the letter arrived on Tuesday. On Wednesday, Trump is scheduled to meet with Silicon Valley tech leaders, including Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Apple CEO Tim Cook, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, and Eric Schmidt of Alphabet (the parent company of Google and YouTube).

The note follows similar pleas that came from musicians earlier this year. This spring, Paul McCartney, Taylor Swift, U2, and more artists sent a letter to Congress, asking for reforms to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which was enacted in 1988 and allows hosting and streaming sites “safe harbors” from copyright infringement liability.

Read the full letter below.

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