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Distribution information guide: Concerts, events & festivals

This information guide explains how the licence fees we collect from concerts, events & festivals are paid out as royalties.

Where does the money come from?

APRA collects licence fees from Australian and New Zealand commercial promoters of concerts, concert tours, dance parties, festivals and events.

What information does APRA AMCOS use to determine who should be paid?

The promoter of the concert, dance party, festival or event supplies a music setlist of main and support artists (or every artist on a festival bill) for each event. The promoter will often work with artist management to provide the setlist to APRA AMCOS. If setlist information is not received from the promoter in a timely manner, APRA AMCOS will directly contact the artist (if they are a member) or the overseas affiliated society who represents the artist, to obtain the setlist.

In some cases, in agreement with the promoter, APRA AMCOS will use Music Recognition Technology (MRT) to automatically identify songs performed at dance music festivals.

How are songs matched to the data APRA AMCOS receives?

The songs listed in the setlists provided by the promoters are directly matched to the vast repertoire of songs in our database.

Key terms used in our Distribution Rules and Practices document

The Copyright Act refers to compositions, musical scores in the form of sheet music, broadsheets or other notation as musical works. Lyrics or words to a song are considered literary works. When we refer to songs, we are referring to all the elements of a musical/literary work protected by copyright.

Music Recognition Technology (MRT):
A digital ‘fingerprint’ of each piece of music is created when it is used. This fingerprint is then compared to the digital fingerprints of many millions of musical works housed in a third-party fingerprint database. This database also contains each work’s metadata (that is, the names of writers, performers, recording details etc.) enabling the owners of each matched work to be identified and paid accordingly.