The ECOWAS Court of Justice has declared some provisions of the the Nigeria Broadcasting Code as infringements on Nigerian citizens’ rights, including freedom of expression.
The affected provisions of the law, the sixth edition, are Articles 3 (1) (1), 3(1) (2), 15(2) (1) of the NBC and Article 15 (5) (1) of the Amendments to the code.
The court, according to a statement from its communications unit, delivered the judgement on 23 October, declaring that the codes “contravene Article 9 (1) & (2) of the African Charter on human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR)”.
“Consequently, it ordered the Respondent (the Nigerian government) to align Articles 3 (1) (1), 3(1) (2), 15(2) (1) of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (6th Edition) and Article 15 (5) (1) of the Amendments to the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (6th Edition) with its international obligations.
“In addition, it ordered that the Respondent ceases to give effect to Articles 3 (1) (1), 3(1) (2), 15(2) (1) of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (6th Edition) and Article 15 (5) (1) of the Amendments to the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (6th Edition) until it has aligned same as ordered.
“It dismissed all other claims by the Applicants,” the statement said.
The suit was filed by a civil society organisation, Expression now Human Rights Initiative.
JUDGMENT OF THE COURT IN THE CASE: THE INCORPORATED TRUSTEES OF EXPRESSION NOW HUMAN RIGHTS INITIATIVE AGAINST THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA
APPLICATION NO: ECW/CCJ/APP/35/40
The ECOWAS Court of Justice, on Monday 23rd October 2023 delivered a judgment in the case brought by the Incorporated Trustees of Expression now Human Rights Initiative before it alleging the violation of various human rights enshrined in fundamental human rights law, particularly the freedom of expression by the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The Applicant, The Incorporated Trustees of Expression now Human Rights Initiative, a Non-Governmental Organization, focused on protecting Nigerian citizens’ freedom of expression both offline and online, collaborates with bloggers and journalists.
It argues that the Nigeria Broadcasting Code, a federal law, restricts freedom of expression through specific provisions (Articles 3 (1) (1), 3 (1) (2), and Amendment Article 15 (5) (1)).
The Applicant alleges that these provisions infringe upon their freedom of expression rights, as well as those of their agents and collaborators, and seeks court declarations and orders.
The Respondent, the Federal Republic of Nigeria, denies violating the Applicant’s freedom of expression and emphasises its duty to protect citizens’ rights.
It argues that the Code aims to promote local content, prevent monopolistic practices, and boost advertising revenue for local broadcasters and content producers.
The Respondent states that the National Broadcasting Commission can penalise stations for broadcasting content that incites hate or public disorder.
It denies using the Code to stifle freedom of expression or harass the Applicant and seek court declarations, including dismissing the suit for lack of merit.
By its judgment of 23 October 2023, after acknowledging its jurisdiction and declaring the application admissible, the Court ruled that Articles 3 (1) (1), 3(1) (2), 15(2) (1) of the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (6th Edition) and Article 15 (5) (1) of the Amendments to the Nigeria Broadcasting Code (6th Edition) contravenes Article 9 (1) & (2) of the African Charter on human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR).
Unveil Your Audio Odyssey With Spotify’s Wrapped Personalized User Experience
It’s that time of the year again when music enthusiasts get to lean on Spotify to dive in and get a revelation of their top listening moments of the year. Spotify Wrapped 2023 is upon us and individuals are ready to embark on their sonic adventure.
This year, Spotify Wrapped introduces listeners to an overview of their music preferences through an access to their personalized 2023 Wrapped experience. Spotify users will be able to exclusively unveil their listening journey on the Spotify mobile app on iOS and Android and also via web view on mobile or Desktop on Spotify.com/Wrapped.
Please make sure your Spotify app is updated to the latest version to access. The experience started rolling out to users globally on November 29 at 2PM WAT/ 3PM SAST/ 4PM EAT.
As you check the receipts on your year in review, only your Wrapped results can reveal what you were really feeling in 2023. Here’s what to look out for:
New data stories bringing you to the heart of their listening: In addition to your top artists, genres, songs, podcasts and minutes listened, we’re adding a few new features to look out for.
Me in 2023 celebrates a streaming habit that defined your listening this year. The experience will reveal one of 12 listening characters that best describes the way you listened on Spotify this year – examples include the Shapeshifter (you’re quick to move from one artist to the next), the Luminary (you play light, upbeat music more than others), or the Alchemist (you create your own playlists more than others do).
Sound Town matches you to a city based on your listening and shared artist affinity. Listening habits are shared in surprising ways across communities around the world, and 2023 Wrapped celebrates that.
Wrapped fan-favorites appear in a refreshed way users haven’t seen before:
Top 5 Genres story shows you how your top five music genres stacked up with a new sandwich-inspired design.
Top 5 Artists lets you see the month your listening peaked for each artist – painting a fuller picture of your entire year and all the moments that made it.
You will also get to hear from one of your top artists directly within your personalized Wrapped via Your Artist Messages. You can then visit the Wrapped feed for video messages from more than 40,000 artists including Taylor Swift, Burna Boy, Bad Bunny, SZA, Dolly Parton and more. See HERE for a video compilation of the artist’s messages.
Wrapped Feed: Right on your Spotify Home screen, the Wrapped feed is the one-stop shop for all things Wrapped, including the best of editorial playlists, merch from your top artists, concerts near you, and more.
Spotify’s AI DJ will guide listeners through their personalized Wrapped – serving up the music you loved this year and sharing commentary about some of your favorite artists, genres, songs and more. The experience will be available for the first week after Wrapped launches.
This year, you can invite your friends to create a Blend and tap the ‘2023 Wrapped Top Songs’ filter to combine all of your top songs from this year into one shared playlist. 2023 Wrapped Integrations
Wrapped on the Pitch with FC Barcelona: As a part of the continued partnership between Spotify and FC Barcelona, fans can find videos from some of their favorite players, including Robert Lewandowski, Alexia Putella and Pedri, guessing each other’s Wrapped. Additionally, 2023 Wrapped will be featured on the LED screens at upcoming matches for the men’s team December 3rd and the women’s team on December 10.
Wrapped themed integrations: Easily access Your Top Songs 2023 by asking Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri. You can also find Wrapped stickers on social platforms like WhatsApp and anywhere GIPHY Stickers are integrated.
Additionally, Spotify has also launched its Wrapped creator experience for podcasters and artists. With access to their own individualized Wrapped microsite experience, creators can dive into all the ways in which their fans listened this year.
NCC Affirms Commitment to Strengthen Visual Arts Sector
The Nigerin Copyright Commission (NCC) has reiterated its commitment to strengthening the visual arts sector and guarantee adequate protection and reward system for creators and other stakeholders in the industry.
Dr. John O. Asein, Director-General NCC, stated this while receiving the Society of Nigerian Arts (SNA) Honourary Fellowship in Abuja on November 9, 2023.
Dr. Asein acknowledged the significant contribution of the sector to Nigerian history, culture and economic development.
Recounting some of the recent initiatives of the Commission, including the Women Empowering Women in Intellectual Property (We Win IP) programme, he called on visual art practitioners to familairise themselves with their rights under the new Copyrigh Act.
He also announced the Commission’s intention to visit tertiary institutions across the country to propagate copyright knowledge and sensitise them on safeguarding their rights.
The Director-General thanked the Executive Committee of SNA for the honour bestowed on him and other awardees, saying that it was a wake up call for him to devote more time to art as a hobby.
Speaking earlier, the SNA President, Mr. Mohammed Sulaiman noted that as the umbrella body for all Nigerian professional visual artists, art groups and business associations in the country, SNA will continue to uphold the highest standards of professionalism to promote the sector and its contributions to national development.
Mr. Sulaiman commended the laudable efforts of the NCC, particulalry under the leadership of Dr. Asein, stating that “SNA has never had it so good.” He thanked the Federal Government for the new Copyright Act and reassured the Commission that the Society will collaborate with it to ensure that the objectives, as far as the visual art sector is concerned, are met.
Awards were also presented to distinguished individuals and institutions, including: Prof. Bruce Onabrakpeya, MFR who was conferred with the Lord of the Arts Award; His HRH Alh. Aminu Ado Bayero, the Emir of Kano (Grand Patronship Award); Prof. Abba I. Tijani, Prof. Sunday Enesi Ododo and Dr. Simon Ikpakronyi (Distinguished Service Awards).
The youngest fellow, Master Kanyeyachukwu Tagbo-Okeke, received a special Award for his outstanding performance in the field of visual arts while the United States Embassy, the Embassies of the Republic of China and Spain also received Awards of Outstanding Cultural Diplomacy.
Nollywood Targets to Generate $14.82B by 2025
A report recently released by the Nigerian Entertainment Conference (NECLive) has revealed that the Nigerian entertainment industry is projected to reach an estimated $14.82 billion revenue in 2025, up from $4 billion revenue recorded in 2013.
The report, titled “Growth, Trends and Opportunity in Nigerian Creative and Entertainment Industry”, was written by NECLive, an entertainment research organisation.
According to NECLive founder, Ayeni Adekunle, the projections are based on the Africa Entertainment and Media Outlook 2023-2027, by PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC), a global expert in accounting and business reengineering.
“In 2012, the industry encountered formidable challenges, causing frustration and disillusionment.
“However, that very frustration became the catalyst for a transformative spark, giving birth to the visionary concept of NECLive. This audacious initiative aimed to unite the nation’s finest creative and industry minds, facilitating dynamic brainstorming sessions, fostering invaluable networking opportunities, and showcasing exceptional talent.
“In 2013, the realisation of this dream became a remarkable reality,” Mr Adekunle said.
He said that for the many aspiring actors and actresses who have come into Nollywood and made it big, the growing numbers in revenue stand as a testament to the sweat and work of the last 10 years.
Mr Adekunle also said that the industry has undergone a remarkable shift from struggling to sell music tapes and gain airplay on radio stations to a phase where artists, managers, producers, directors, and labels are thriving on established structures, leading to increased international recognition and acceptance.
According to him, this paradigm shift highlights that music is not merely an art but a substantial source of revenue and that the film and comedy sectors have become intricately linked, transitioning to online platforms to adapt to modern technologies, and fostering sectoral growth.
The report provided an in-depth analysis of the financial performance across various industry sectors over the past decade, spanning from the music industry to film, fashion, and comedy.
Projections indicate an impressive 16.5 per cent Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) in revenue over the next five years. This growth is attributed to various factors, including the rising internet accessibility among mobile users, with an expected increase from 54 million to 78 million subscribers within the timeframe.
Additionally, the surge in streaming platforms and the integration of innovative technology like Generative AI are poised to drive double-digit revenue growth.
The report also delves into the growth, trends, and opportunities in the Nigerian creative and entertainment industry over the last decade and outlines its future expansion plans.
The film sector’s evolution from producing and distributing 1,800 films worth $5.1 billion in 2013 to 2,500 films valued at $6.4 billion currently has positioned Nigeria as the world’s second-largest film producer.
The entertainment industry has undergone a remarkable shift from struggling to sell music tapes and gain airplay on radio stations to a phase where artists, managers, producers, directors, and labels are thriving on established structures, leading to increased international recognition and acceptance.
The era of cassette tapes and DVDs, the group further said, “had given way to a thriving scene marked by sold-out global concerts and tours, international and local awards such as the Grammys, Billboard, BET, MTV Europe Music Awards, and AMVCA, exclusive movie premieres and cinema viewings, topping charts and grossing billions through extensive streaming on digital platforms like IrokoTV, ShowMax, Netflix, and Amazon Prime Video.
“The entertainment industry boasts an impressive track record of milestones, projecting its superstars, projects, and creative works onto the global stage”.
The report stated that “For the many aspiring actors and actresses who have come into Nollywood and made it big, the growing numbers in revenue stands as a testament to the sweat and work put in place within the last ten years and beyond.
“The sector has moved from the production and distribution of 1,800 films worth $5.1 billion in 2013 to 2,500 films worth $6.4 billion and counting. This makes Nigeria the 2nd largest film producer in the world.”
“Amid progress, it’s essential to acknowledge the challenges that once plagued the entertainment industry, such as high cases of piracy, which crippled profitability, and limited funding that hampered creativity as well as lack of international exposure.
“However, today’s landscape, shaped by the internet, streaming platforms like IrokoTV, Billboard, Netflix, and social media giants like Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, Youtube, Facebook, and Snapchat, along with forums like the Nigerian Entertainment Conference (NECLive), which has for the past decade served as gathering for the industry giants, facilitated dialogues, provided solutions, and steered transformative changes within the industry,” the report stated.
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