We pay royalties to our songwriter, composer and music publisher members, and to our overseas affiliated societies, who then pay those royalties onto their members. These royalties are a large part of how those who compose music can continue to make a living doing what they do. That means we all get to benefit!
Cost to revenue ratio
We ensure the licence fees you pay are distributed to songwriters, composers and music publishers in the most accurate and cost-effective way possible.
Administration and operational costs are deducted from the licence revenue we receive. The remaining fees are distributed to the copyright owners of the music we license to you.
For every dollar we collect, about 85 cents is paid to music creators. Our costs compare very favourably to organisations providing the same service as us overseas.
Licence fees are generally determined according to the nature and type of music use. We have various licence schemes for the different ways music is used by different industries.
For example, the value of music to a music streaming service or an FM radio station is very different to the value of music to a café owner. Our fees are applied to different industry types accordingly. Where music use is intrinsic to a business, our rates tend to be higher to reflect that value.
The main sources of music-use data used to calculate royalties owed to songwriters, composers, and music publishers are:
Radio and television stations reporting the music they broadcast,
Digital music services, streaming video on-demand services, websites, and record labels reporting the songs they stream or sell and their volumes,
Services using Music Recognition Technology (such as digital fingerprinting and audio recognition) to match performances or broadcasts to their song databases,
Data from music providers who supply programmed curated music for specific industries, such as fitness,
Background Music Suppliers who provide us with music reports from their clients’ playlists, and
Setlists of songs performed by artists or DJs at gigs, live events, and festivals.
The impact of digital
In recent years the volume of data we process has increased rapidly alongside growth in digital music services. We ensure the costs of collecting music use information are balanced against our need for accuracy.