The American Federation of Musicians (AFM) represents musicians and (some) librarians employed by some symphony orchestras. The conditions for their participation in an electronic media activity are set out either in the basic local collective agreement (CBA) or in a national trade union agreement, or are subject to local negotiations on a case-by-case basis. The balance obtained provides for the payment of broadcasts and live broadcasts of the national anthem during « premium games ». He also ensures that any promotional activity offers recognition to the orchestra and its musicians. Advertising clips may not be used as testing or backing tracks or jingles that would otherwise fall under the AFM`s Commercial Ads Agreement. Extensive use by third parties may not be made without the agreement of the orchestra committee. In addition, anyone out of three authorized to use an advertising clip must sign an agreement with the employer to ensure payment in case of abuse. The employer has 30 days to clear an offence for the material he makes available to a third party before he becomes liable, and then must accept and fulfil all the conditions required by the corresponding AFM agreement. But as versatile and flexible as the IMA is, conductors sometimes try to get around the chord. Competition for hosting projects can lead to a breakdown of solidarity between orchestras that are signatories to AFM collective agreements.
This has the potential to lead orchestral musicians into a race to the bottom, which contrasts with why the AFM serves as a negotiator. The desire of employers to negotiate individual contracts in the media gave rise to some provocative litigation that eventually consolidated the role of the AFM as the exclusive bargaining agent for the use of electronic media. There are as many electronic media agreements as there are possibilities for recording performances. For example, the AFM has agreements that control the creation and sale of regular audio recordings such as CDs. Then there are agreements that cover the performances that are broadcast on radio and television. There is another agreement that allows the downloading and live streaming of performances. Finally, the AFM is negotiating with a consortium of symphony orchestras the Integrated Media Agreement, a contract that creates a virtual set of options through which symphony orchestras can use recorded performances. The IMA is an extremely diverse agreement, which takes into account the constant evolution of the field of music recording and playback.