The State of Affairs (4th Mar 2016): Government To Push For Media Overhaul, Gold Coast Musicians Receive $180K and China Quashes Foreign Competition.

  • Nicholas Price
  • March 4, 2016
  • Comments Off on The State of Affairs (4th Mar 2016): Government To Push For Media Overhaul, Gold Coast Musicians Receive $180K and China Quashes Foreign Competition.

This week in the music industry, Communications Minister Mitch Fifield is pushing for deregulation in the media industry, the Queensland Government is putting money into the arts in search of talent to showcase at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and the Chinese Government is introducing strict online publishing laws tying the hands of foreign competition.

Government Pushes For Deregulation In The Media Market


Communications Minister Mitch Fifield has announced that he would be pushing for a plan to substantially deregulate the Australian media market setting the industry up for the biggest changes in a generation.

Fifield’s plan would see the retraction of the reach rule; which prohibits a person controlling commercial TV licences that collectively reach more than 75% of the Australian population. If these plans go through, we could see a number of big mergers, including rumored Fairfax with Channel Nine and News Corp with Channel Ten.

More relevant to the music industry, this deregulation would see the retraction of the two-out-of-three rule where a single entity can not own two out of three of commercial radio, TV and newspapers in one market.  This could see additional radio stations enter the market or current stations bought out by larger entities and rejuvenated with new money.

“The media ownership regulations in our law were written before pay television. They were certainly before the internet. They are a relic of a past media economy and they have been out of date for years,” said Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull.

All this means a few things for the music industry, as the two-out-of-three rule is pulled the government has promised to encourage more content in regional centers possibly seeing more radio stations or at least more active stations. There will also be an incentive for local news to be filmed in local areas – hopefully leading to more regional shows receiving better coverage.

$180K Funding Boost For Gold Coast Artists


The Queensland Government has pledge $180,000 to the Generate program in an effort to find the Gold Coast’s best and brightest artistic and creative talent for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018).

The $360,000 Generate program aims to discover local artists who can deliver world-class performances and events that showcase home-grown talent in the lead up to the games.

The question is, how local will the talent be? Queensland is a jackpot for incredible talents including Ball Park Music, Violent Soho, Sheppard and Ayla just to name a few, however none reside on the Gold Coast.

“It’s for artists who define their practice as contemporary – it could be an individual or a group… We’re interested in working with artists who want to create site-specific and interactive performances and artworks for audiences who aren’t expecting it,” said Creative Lead for GC2018, Yaron Lifschitz.

The program will work in three stages. The first round successful applicants will have five days, spread over a few weeks to develop their ideas. The second stage includes funding for creative development and possible inclusion in the Bleach Festival 2017. In the final stage the idea is included in the arts and cultural program in 2018.

“The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games will be the biggest sporting event in Australia this decade and it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to showcase the best of Queensland’s culture and lifestyle to the world,” said Commonwealth Games Minister, Stirling Hinchliffe.

China Prohibits Foreign Online Publishing


China’s government has announced that a new law will be going ahead restricting the online publication of any video game, video, audio, article, map, art or literature by a foreign entity in China. Under these new laws only 100% Chinese-owned companies will be given a permit to published content online. The ruling will come into effect in less than two weeks, on March 10.

What this means for Australia is that artists and their management will be forced to enter into arrangements with local distribution companies in China to access the market even through the internet.

It should be mentioned that the impact on many music businesses will be minimized with a large number of those already in long-stand exclusive deals with Chinese distributors; for example Warner Music with Tencent Holdings, Universal Music Group with Dong Music and Alibaba with Beyond Media Global.

A company not covered by one of these deals is Apple Music possibly leading to a lock-out from the Chinese music market for the tech giant.

Despite a population in excess of 1.3 billion people the Chinese recorded music market is only valued at around US$82.6 million, the 21st biggest in the world.

This is not the first time China has introduced laws like these; in 2015 online publishing services were prohibited under the National Development and Reform Commission but an article from the Regulation on the Administration of Publication superseded the prohibition. These new laws are set to yet again prohibit foreign online publishing.

The Round Up

Foxtel’s Country Music Channel (CMC) have announced its finalists for the 6th Annual CMC Music Awards. Head HERE for the finalists.

Danah‘s latest single Side Effects has made the semi-finals for R&B/Hip-Hop Category inthe International Songwriting Competition.

4ZZZ is kicking off March Music Month and this month, the station will be hosting a bunch of events and activities across Brisbane celebrating music.

28th Annual Folk Alliance International Conference reaches highest attendance boasting 2500 registrants, 1000 musicians and 200 official showcases.

Methyl Ethel sign to 4AD and announce Australian tour.


ARIA Singles Chart
1. Lukas Graham – 7 Years
2. Flume Feat. Kai – Never Be Like You
3. Zayn – Pillowtalk
4. Twenty One Pilots – Stressed Out
5. The Chainsmokers Feat. Rozes – Roses
6. Hilltop Hoods Feat. Montaigne & Tom Thum – 1955
7. Flo Rida – My House
8. Charlie Puth – One Call Away
9. Kiiara – Gold
10. Rihanna Feat. Drake – Work

ARIA Album Chart
1. Hilltop Hoods – Drinking From The Sun, Walking Under Stars Restrung
2. Molly (Soundtrack from the TV series)
3. Adele – 25
4. SIA – This Is Acting
5. David Bowie – Nothing Has Changed (The Best Of David Bowie)
6. Justin Bieber – Purpose
7. David Bowie – Blackstar
8. Coldplay – A Head Full Of Dreams
9. Jack Garratt – Phase
10. Taylor Swift – 1989

AIR Independent Singles Chart
1. Flume Feat. Kai – Never Be Like You
2. Hilltop Hoods Feat. Montaigne & Tom Thum – 1955
3. SIA – Cheap Thills
4. Tim Minchin – Come Home (Cardinal Pell)
5. Missy Higgins – Oh Canada
6. SIA – Alive
7. The Rubens – Hoops
8. Vance Joy – Straight Into Your Arms
9. Hilltop Hoods Feat. James Chatburn – Higher
10. SIA – Chandelier

AIR Independent Album Chart
1. SIA – This Is Acting
2. Rufus – Bloom
3. The Jezabels – Synthia
4. SIA – 1000 Forms Of Fear
5. Vance Joy – Dream Your Life Away
6. The Rubens – Hoops
7. Adam Brand And The Outlaws – Adam Brand And The Outlaws
8. Hilltop Hoods – Walking Under Stars
9. Courtney Barnett – Sometime I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
10. The Wiggles – Wiggle Town!


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