We have heard news of a planned new tourist attraction in the Music Hall of Fame in Camden where visitors will be able to get up on stage and sing alongside their favourite rock and pop stars. The attraction, set up by music entrepreneur Lee Bennett, uses the same hologram technology which allowed Tupac Shakur (who died in 1996) to perform with fellow rapper Dr Dre and Snoop Dog at last year’s Coachella Festival in the USA. The London attraction also boasts that fans will be able to takeaway a DVD of their performances with the holograms.
Commercially, this sounds like an exciting idea – karaoke on a new level. However, legally, the alarm bells are ringing themselves off the wall. Whilst the UK’s position is that there “no such thing as a general right by a famous person to control the reproduction of their image” (as the recent Rihanna case highlights), we have clear laws on copyright licensing and infringement (in terms of music performance, image reproduction and DVD compilation). We anticipate that the music publishers, agents, TV rights owners, and the musicians themselves might all have something to say on the matter (or at least their legal representatives will).