January 24, 2021

The future of SGAE and black magic | Culture

The future of SGAE and black magic | Culture



The SGAE has been locked in a maze for years. No matter how hard you search for the exit, you always end up at the same point. The president, José Miguel Fernández Sastrón, finally seemed to find a shortcut: an electoral advance, for next October 26, to renovate the dome and give a firm compass to the chaotic course of the entity. But nevertheless, the first days of the campaign for the elections they seem to move along familiar paths: reciprocal accusations and opposing sides. In the absence of two weeks for the elections, the forecasts show a single forecast: fog.

There are, yes, some references to get your bearings. On the one hand, around fifteen well-known musicians, from Álvaro Urquijo to Kiko Veneno, through Jota de Los Planetas, retired last Thursday his candidacy to the board of directors in protest at the absence of electronic voting in the elections and against the management carried out by Sastrón. They will not recognize the results of the polls, because they do not detect enough democratic guarantees, they ask the other members not to vote either, and they threaten to take their repertoire to another entity, already existing or that they found from scratch.

On the other hand, the most famous name in the house does continue in the race. The appearance of Eduardo Teddy Baptist in candidate lists The electoral process generated jubilation and concern, depending on the partner being asked. For the nostalgic, the former president who led the SGAE to the largest collections and distributions in its history, which led it to be the sixth most important management entity in the world and who did not hesitate to fight for the battles as unpopular as the defense of the Canon for private copying or against piracy is the only one that can guide the organism towards a solid future. "With 34 years of management, he has the most experience and the results of his time give him some authority," they emphasize in their surroundings, where they confirm their aspiration to return to the front of the SGAE, if so chosen by the 39 members of the board to leave the elections. "And if there is a majority that can govern," they add.

Some of the rebellious musicians, like Amaro Ferreiro, nevertheless, they discard that Bautista can represent "the face of renewal of the SGAE". Because in addition to his successes, in his past there is also his injured goodbye, in 2011, arrested for an alleged crime of misappropriation. Since then, Bautista remained practically silent and withdrawn. Although, at least since 2015, friends and proselytes had already suggested on several occasions that he return.

He does it now, just when, after seven years of investigations, he waits to know the date of the oral trial that the magistrate of the National Court José de la Mata opened in October 2017 against him and another 10 people. For BaptistIn particular, the prosecutor asks for seven years in prison. So, the critics point out, how can the entity preside over a leader waiting to sit on the bench? What if the process began during his tenure? What would it mean, in addition, to the already battered image of the SGAE?

In the environment of Bautista, remember the precedent of another case against him, for alleged diversion of funds, which ended up filed in 2016. And clarify, in any case, that his return would only be a parenthesis and that he has made it clear in several private conversations A brief presidency, with very marked deadlines and equally clear objectives: a professionalized dome, sign "top level" technicians and return to the "management philosophy" of the SGAE as a company "that straightened its previous stage. They defend that it is about achieving greater income and distributing it among the authors, since the entity, by law, does not have a profit motive.

Maybe, at least in this, the plan coincides with the opposition musicians. "The SGAE It is a monster that is feeding itself ", denounced last Thursday Amaro Ferreiro. The truth is that the fame of these two fronts hardly leaves light for the other more than 90 candidates who will compete for a position on the board of the SGAE. And that they fight for some visibility between the two most mediatic giants.

Meanwhile, from the environment of Baptist and of the rebellious musicians they confirm that between both sides there are contacts, even if by intermediaries. At the end of the day, also Sastron and his predecessor in the presidency, José Luis Acosta, have met several times with Bautista throughout these years. Perhaps they will comment on the curse that surrounds the most powerful armchair of the SGAE: Baptist, arrested in 2011; his successor, Anton Reixa, ceased by the board itself in 2013; Acosta resigned in 2016; and Sastron was forced to advance the elections. Whoever the future leader is, he will need an antidote to black magic.

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