Introducing the CEEMID Observatory

Daniel Antal, CFA



  • Data collection vs integration: the Feasibility Study places too much emphasis on data collection, although most of the data is already available - and often 95% of the data is never used. We would like to offer to release thousands of Pillars 1-3 indicators with full data maps, description and with open source data integration code for beta-testing an Observatory, and gaining more feasibility insights of use, data quality, missing data, cost, cost/benefit analysis.

  • Innovation & information: CEEMID was born out of necessity to support similar non-data collection aims as foreseen EMO. Given that we believe that the availability is far better than the Feasibility Study states, and we would be happy to release a beta version of Pillars 1-3, more weight should be given to this part.

  • Feasibilty contains our recommendations regarding the Feasibility Study. Because we believe that data availability is far better than presented by the draft Study, we transferring our know-how in finding data, data standards and requirements.

  • Pillars: We shortly introduce what could experience, cost/benefit analysis, data maps, data assets, open source data integration code could be transferred from CEEMID to the Feasibility Study, a beta-test version of the Observatory services in Pillars 1-3 and how could further feasibility efforts focus on Pillar 4: Innovation.

  • In each topic you can go deeper with pressing ⯆ on your keyboard, touchpad or on the screen - we offer more arguments, examples, visualizations. You can jump to the next main topic with the arrow on your keyboard or on the screen or by clicking the highlighted blue text. The first topic our disagreement with the ⯈ Data Collection priority of the study. ⯈⯈ Contact & More Info is at the end of the presentation.

CEEMID & Observatory: Data Collection

  • We believe that the Feasibility Study is based on a false premise of lacking data and puts too much emphasis in data collection. We believe that most data is available for Pillar 1 & Pillar 2, and the industry is making huge steps in Pillar 3. We have integrated thousands of indicators on EU28 and recently even on regional levels, and we believe that the Feasibility of an EMO could be demonstrated by granting public access via a web application to CEEMID.

  • CEEMID’s thousands of Pillars 1-3 indicators were created to allow small-country stakeholders and small stakeholders without significant market research, R&D, IT capacities to use all tools mentioned in ⯈ Pillar 4: Innovation and aims to ⯈ inform policymakers. More on our ⯆ geographical coverage of Europe and ⯆ re-use of data

  • We would like to publicly release in 2020 thousands of Pillar 1-3 data for all EU countries with up to 20 years of history, with proper documentation and a fully open source integration code, so that the evaluation of the an Observatory’s feasibility can be based on real user experience, on real data integration and collection costs.

  • We have offered the Consultants a pro-bono consultation and we are ready to transfer much of the documentation, or data maps to thousands of indicators, existing collection, cost, use experience within the ⯈⯈ Feasibility Study .

Different Views On Data Availability

The Feasibility Study states: Present a relevant and useful data collection framework covering the entire European music landscape, to help music sector operators and citizens better understand and benefit from this complex ecosystem

  • We believe that CEEMID has created much of the data collection framework. The problem is that it is financed from small contribution of small stakeholders, who do not want to open the system up to avoid free-riding and the tragedy of the commons, i.e. that nobody will eventually contribute to these costs. With a better funding model a music observatory would be already in place for all European stakeholders.

  • The current Open Data regime of the EU (formerly known public-sector re-use) allows access to publicly funded data collected for tax, statistical and research purposes, and it enables us to integrate from existing sources about 60% of the envisioned European Music Observatory ⯆ see our geographical coverage and observations on ⯆ data quality below. We are happily transferring this know-how to the EMO feasibility team.

  • CEEMID, while it also collects data to fill in some gaps in the existing data, is mainly a data integration framework that could produces thousands of indicators covering the ‘four pillars’ from existing European data sources. In our experience, most data exists, and about 95% of the data is never really used, partly because it is never displayed in a publicly available Observatory.

  • Review ⯆ geographical coverage, data quality and remarks below or continue to ⯈ system aims.

Geographical Coverage

  • CEEMID started as the Central and Eastern European Music Industry Databases, and one of its aims was to bring these seemingly data-poor areas on an equal footing with their competitors, partners and users on the EU Single Market. We have always focused on finding CEE data and compare it with preferably EU-28 data.

  • CEEMID is not focusing on the CEE in data collection, on the contrary: it collected data in data rich Western and Nordic countries, and out of necessity created the data on less covered CEE (and often, Southern) member states.

  • CEEMID as a default covers the EU28 on national, and in some cases, NUTS2 regional levels. However, CEEMID makes efforts to include EEA countries Norway, Lichtenstein, Iceland, Switzerland; future and current candidate countries Albania, North Macedonia, Serbia, Turkey; and neighborhood countries Armenia, Ukraine, Georgia.

Data Coverage & Quality

  • CEEMID like statistical authorities usually overcollects data. There are two reasons for this: often adding elements, questions to a data collection procedure is almost costless, because the fixed costs are high. Also, if data later will be needed, it is not possible to collect 2013 missing data in 2019.

  • The Open Data regime makes data abundant, and often free. However, this data is often semi-processed at most and not tidy, which means that very significant resources are needed to make it usable. This data processing know-how is often missing from microenterprise-sized music industry stakeholders.

  • We believe that the often cited example of the European Audiovisual Observatory is not very good, because this observatory was born before the EU, automated data processing and distribution, and the open data regime of the EU. CEEMID currently offers much higher data quality than the European Audiovisual Observatory (website) because it was designed under these circumstances. Creating the European Music Observatory, if technological and regulatory improvements are considered, are a much cheaper, simpler mercerize than the audiovisual observatory’s example would suggest.

CEEMID & European Observatory: Innovation & Information

We would recommend a high-level documentation of the data sources we used to create the Pillars 1-3, the experience with user needs, costs, willingness to pay, so that further efforts and research competition can focus on the real value added Pillar 4: Innovation.

CEEMID’s data are used in AI algorithm training for concert and record promotion, in pricing the use of music in various services, in designing better royalty collection and monitoring routines, in creating hard ex ante and ex post grant evaluation indicators. The only Pillar 4 activity where all data is not used is blockchain.

  • CEEMID’s Pillars 1-2-3 were born out of necessity: CEE stakeholders were disadvantaged versus rich market stakeholders because of data asymmetries

  • The competition authorities and EU Courts require the same level of data coverage in all EU countries that is public available only in a few EU member states

  • CEE stakeholders only receive 30-50% of their fair royalties because of the information asymmetries versus large users and platforms, such as Alphabet’s YouTube.

Innovation & Information 2 (continued): System

The Feasibility Study states: Provide a system delivering genuine European added-value, designed to generate the relevant level of new data to inform policy-makers and built to avoid overlaps with existing public policy or funding tools.

  • We do not believe that EMO system aim should be to “generate the relevant level of new data to inform policy-makers.” We believe that 95% of the existing data is not used, because of a lacking public funding model, and an open data integration that we would recommend. ⯆ Data collection vs integration

  • CEEMID has proven that even in seemingly data-poor countries there is an abundance of data present, but the sector is lacking research and IT capacities to present them to policy-makers.

  • Instead of generating new data, better quality data and high level information should be delivered. In most cases, the data is already there and it is disused, even though it is collected at great cost.

  • CEEMID in itself proves the need for an Observatory, because it was created out of necessity and without any public funds available. However, it would be extremely cost-effective and give the industry a huge boost if CEEMID would be publicly financed and would be available for all music stakeholders in all EU countries, and not only for paying users.


  • The Feasibility Study should be amended with a comprehensive map of existing EU-wide data collection schemes, and clearly indicate that these sources are available via the ⯆ Open Data Directive⯆ Example 1-2. Furthermore, we believe that the emphasis from data collection must switch in the study to data integration, because most of the data is already collected.

  • The Feasibility Study should clearly state of CEEMID’s existence, the fact that it covers in a ⯆ reproducible manner almost all the identified potential uses and data of Pillars 1-2, and making a lot of progress with Pillar 3 ⯈ See Pillars 1-4. This is a proof in itself that the creation of the European Music Observatory is possible even without legislative action and public funds, however, releasing it for the public would vastly increase its use all over Europe.

  • We would like to explicitly spell out in the Feasibility Study that CEEMID would like to ⯆ release for the public data history up to 20 years for thousands of indicators, or alternatively the software code that produces CEEMID itself automatically with a public grant that would create either a web application to document and retrieve the data, or a well-documented open source code. This could be a beta version of the EMO with demo tools for ⯈ Pillar 4: Innovation, to better understand the missing elements, costs and benefits of running a European Music Observatory.

  • The Feasibility Study should review CEEMID’s and other similar initiatives, for example, bmat’s or MusiMaps’ experience with innovation, to make it clearer that music stakeholders are not facing lack of data, but in the abundance of data they are missing skills and innovative tools to use them. Because data is abundant, emphasis should be made on reproducible research principles & open source development to ensure that the already existing data can far better be exploited.

Data requirements

  • CEEMID would like to transfer its know-how on data availability, data quality and data requirements to the Feasibility Study and to the future Observatory, or make it public for any interested party.

  • CEEMID adopted the Standard U.S. / EU data mapping of the music industry for emerging markets (see ⯈ Pillar 1 - our mapping in the entire value chain of the music industry), too, and provides a far more comprehensive data map, i.e. the US/EU standard Three Income Stream Model for collection, processing and creation of music industry indicators than the proposed Four Pillar Model.

  • CEEMID understands how to acquire ‘big data’ and other important data via APIs using open source software. We can release the open source code, or the acquired data after consultation with API owners as open data (see ⯈ use case in Pillar 2 - Music diversity and circulation).

  • CEEMID can provide know-how on the best practices of following ESSNet Culture guidelines - large pdf on the creation of music indicators (see ⯈ use case in Pillar 3: Music & Society),

  • CEEMID can provide the know-how how to adhere to the IFRS Fair Value Measurements principles that are essential to royalty pricing, benchmarking or factual grant evaluation premises

  • CEEMID follows the jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the EU to provide stakeholders with indicators that are admissible as economic evidence, for example in pricing and royalty negotiation disputes, or damage claims (see ⯈ Use case in Pillar 4: Innovation).

Open Data, Re-Use of Public Sector Information

The re-use of public sector information and various open data initiatives made it possible that we integrated many existing, publicly funded, EU-wide data collections without legal hurdles and with very little cost into thousands of indicators that cover all Europe in Pillars 1-3.

  • inflation data is made from a vast array of price data collected in EU member states; CEEMID re-uses the price data of cultural goods and services.

  • national accounts data is mainly created from the tax and mandatory statistical filings of creative industries; CEEMID uses

  • cultural access and participation data are sometimes included in EU research programs,

  • music education and training data.

Re-Use of PSI Example: Who Pays for Music on Mobile?

The following indicator, which can be expressed for various target groups, is created solely from available Eurostat data.