Today we received a call from OSDEL. For those who do not know, this is the Organization for the Collective Management of Speech Projects (OSDEL) is a non-profit civic cooperative, which operates with a license from the Ministry of Culture and Sports (in accordance with the provisions of law 2121/1993, as it is currently in force, for the protection of copyright), is owned and managed by its members, authors and publishers.
The organization's request was to remove a post that referenced “pirated content.”
We asked them to email us their request and received the following:
"We are contacting you due to a complaint we received regarding the posting of your article on 19/8/2022 entitled "Z-Library free ebooks and scientific books for everyone".
The article in question, in addition to advertising and promotion, makes a detailed reference to the pirated website Z-library with:
- extensive report on the circulation of the writings,
- report on free - and not illegal - distribution of books and publications,
- report to enable each user in uploading & downloading,
- while at the same time there are also active online links to the pirated website
So after reading the email, we've hidden the article from our page, but thought we'd see what else is out there on the web about the Organization in question.
The blog "road" contained a very revealing publication which we quote below.
"I am one of the contracted members and this year [the author means OSDEL], once again, I saw very large deductions being made on the rights that I would collect. I understandably wondered why such long reservations?
Looking at the data that OSDEL itself lists on its website, I found some very interesting information:
- In the Board of Directors there is an over-representation of publishers (6 out of 12 members) who also receive the lion's share of the distributed amounts.
- In the 2022 distribution, the publishers received the lion's share: 1.785.767,98 euros, against 1.109.986,80 of the creators! The picture is similar for almost all years from 2016 until today.
- The average amount of money collected by a creator for the reproduction of books is 149 euros, while a publisher 1.546 euros! (see details on the OSDEL page / Distribution 2022 - https://www.osdel.gr/ )
- The Director of OSDEL is also a legal advisor. The two legal advisers collect 40.000 euros a year!
- The fees for a staff of 12 people + the manager amount to 365 thousand euros per year.
- At 16,3% the deductions reach the amounts that are supposed to be distributed. Together with the VAT it ends up being almost 1/3 of the amount...
- The amount withheld reaches half a million! Money kept by the creators and publishers it theoretically represents.
- It is noteworthy that we are not even allowed to go to the offices of OSDEL (it must be the only organization in Greece that still observes the covid quarantine) but we have to pay a courier out of our own pocket for the invoice to go there in order to receive the crumbs that are left...
An organization called the Organization for Collective Management of Speech Works should also include the issue of copyrights which – as we mentioned in a previous article – are often not paid to authors.
But how could something like this happen when half of the Board is made up of publishers? How can this fact be explained, a minority of members running – in essence – the organization? Publisher members are few compared to creator members. How do they reap most of the revenue and why do they end up making the decisions that affect everyone?
I don't have the answers to all these questions, but I believe that the creator-members of OSDEL should claim a more active role in the immediate future so that the Organization can change course. Because there is definitely something wrong with what has already been mentioned.
Let us not be satisfied with the crumbs that are handed out. Silence is not golden by any means.
Until the next elections, which are in two years, a group should be formed to turn the tide..."
In addition to all of the above, let us recall another complaint of the Organization:
The demand of the Organization for the Collective Management of the Rights of Speech Works (OSDEL) was to the public relations companies, members of the Association of Advertising and Communication Companies of Greece, for the payment of royalties for the publication and distribution of press publications!
But after an investigative request from EDEE, was announced that there is no protected intellectual creation for either the authors or the publishers.
Of course the complaint had to be made because who knows? someone will bite and it's a lot of money Mars...