It’s been a while since “raving” has been widely regarded by governments as counterculture. Nonetheless, earlier this week, the French Senate ratified a bill that considerably tightens event parameters for even mildly sizable “music gatherings.”
Republican senator, Pascale Bories says the legislation was drafted “to better supervise the festive musical gatherings (rave parties) and to make more dissuasive the sanctions against their organizers.”
Most notably, the law would require any festive musical gathering of under 500 people to be declared in town hall at least a month in advance while also redefining permissible noise volumes in private and public spaces.
According to Freeform, an association defending the rights of French event planners, the bill’s wording “is so broad that any type of party may be affected as long as there is music. […] Basically, whether it’s for a boom, an anniversary, or a private concert in your garden, you’ll have to make the declaration at the town hall at least a month before.”
The kicker is that the law makes penalties for rave-related infractions much more severe, not only sentencing offenders to up to 400 hours of community service and a fine of €3,750, but giving the police power to seize equipment used by organizers for any insurgent event.
The bill starkly resembles a piece of explicitly anti-rave UK legislature adopted in the ’90s, which stifled decibel, duration, and general parameters of “rave” gatherings of more than 20 persons. While the Senate accepted the new law, it still has to be presented to the National Assembly before public enactment.