22 December 2017
The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) has concluded that the pricing practices of Teosto could have discriminated against providers of paid streaming services vis-à-vis providers of traditional pay-television services. Teosto has, however, changed its pricing model, which can be considered as a move in the right direction. Further investigation is not necessary at this time.
In July 2015, MTV Sisällöt Oy submitted to the FCCA a request for action regarding the activities of Säveltäjäin Tekijänoikeustoimisto Teosto ry, a nonprofit performance rights organisation that collects royalties on behalf of songwriters and composers in Finland. MTV alleged that Teosto had abused its dominant market position through its pricing regarding music use compensation for audiovisual content services.
According to investigations by the FCCA, Teosto’s pricing has not been technology neutral. Rather, competing actors have had different tariffs. According to the FCCA, a pricing model such as this could have resulted in distortion of competition.
During the course of the FCCA’s investigation, Teosto has changed its pricing practices and introduced new tariffs from the beginning of 2017. The revised tariffs treat traditional and new methods of distributing audiovisual contents equally. However, two separate tariffs continue to exist – one for free services and one for paid services.
The reform implemented by Teosto can be regarded as a move in the right direction with respect to technology neutrality. Application of the pricing model in practice will show whether or not Teosto’s terms and conditions or other practices continue to result in clearly excessive pricing or discrimination of customers. It is not necessary to continue to investigate the matter at the moment, but the FCCA may re-examine the matter if there are indications in the future that Teosto’s terms and conditions or other practices lead to significant anti-competitive effects.
Further information: Jarno Sukanen, Head of Research, tel. +358 29 505 3352, Milla Määttä, Research Officer, tel. +358 29 505 3714, email firstname.lastname@example.org.