Blackpink Vietnam concert license could be revoked

By Nhat Thu   July 27, 2023 | 06:25 am PT
Blackpink Vietnam concert license could be revoked
Blackpink perform at Coachella Music Festival in 2019. Photo by AFP
This weekend’s Blackpink concerts in Hanoi could have their licenses revoked because organizers failed to obtain copyright permission and pay royalties.

The Vietnam Center for the Protection of Music Copyright (VCPMC) announced Thursday it had asked the Hanoi People’s Committee and the municipal Department of Culture and Sports to cancel Saturday and Sunday’s performances at the capital’s My Dinh National Stadium due to copyright infringement.

A representative of the Hanoi Department of Culture and Sports said that they would investigate the matter further.

According to VCPMC, concert organizer IME has failed to obtain permission and pay royalties needed to license the copyright for use of Blackpink’s material in Vietnam.

VCPMC is representing the South Korea Music Copyright Association (KOMCA) under an agreement that grants VCPMC the right to license public performance rights of all works in KOMCA's portfolio to be performed in VCPMC’s territory.

VCPMC is the only agency in Vietnam authorized by KOMCA at this time.

KOMCA has stated: "If a copyright license is not granted before the concert, KOMCA requests IME to stop organizing performances of works that belong to KOMCA's portfolio."

VCPMC said that when the Blackpink concert in Hanoi was announced, the agency contacted IME and asked them to pay royalties for the copyright. However, as of July 19, IME had not obtained permission for the copyright.

On Thursday, VCPMC received an email from IME project manager Pham Tam saying the copyrights to all songs to be played in the concert are actually owned by Blackpink’s management company YG Entertainment, and thus IME was under no obligation to pay VCPMC.

"IME has organized shows in many countries around the world and fulfilled copyright obligations in those countries, but when it comes to Vietnam, they said ‘the copyright of the songs in the concert belongs to YG Entertainment’. Why do they fulfill copyright obligations in other countries, but not in Vietnam?" said a representative of VCPMC.

Blackpink was formed in 2016 and consists of four members: Jennie, Lisa, Jisoo and Rose. The group has since achieved international success with numerous hits like "Ddu-Du Ddu-du," "Kill This Love" and "Pink Venom."

Their YouTube channel is the most-viewed on the platform with 30.399 billion views. Outside of music, the four members of the group are also global ambassadors for famous fashion brands.

Blackpink’s world tour Born Pink, which started late last year, has grossed about $163.8 million so far, with more than 900,000 tickets sold. This makes Born Pink the highest grossing girl group tour of all time, surpassing the previous record set by the Spice Girls ($78.2 million).

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