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Creators' Digital Royalties Topped €1-Billion For First Time in 2017: CISAC Global Report

Global royalties’ collections for creators of music, audiovisual, visual arts, drama and literature rose to a record high of €9.6 billion ($14.4 billion CAD) in 2017, up 6.2% on the previous year, according to the 2018 Global Collections Report published by CISAC (International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers).

Royalties from digital income are reported over the €1 billion mark for the first time after a 24% increase in 2017. Digital collections have nearly tripled (up 166%) in the last five years, boosted by the streaming boom and, lately, by surging consumer uptake of video streaming services.

Music royalties have grown to €8.3 billion, up 6%, with digital also reported over €1 billion for the first time.
Despite digital’s rise for all repertoires to €1.27 billion, revenues from digital uses remain far below collections from broadcast, live, and background uses. Only 13% of creators’ royalties come from digital sources (up from 11%), a reflection of the "gross mismatch between the volume of creative work being made available via digital channels and the amounts being returned to creators," according to CISAC, seemingly taking aim at YouTube, in particular.

It is the fifth consecutive year of global growth for creators, and the first to see increases in all repertoires. Solid growth in TV and radio collections suggests surging digital revenues are not currently cannibalising traditional markets. In 16 of the top 20 digital collecting countries, broadcast royalties saw growth.

Commenting on the report, CISAC Director General Gadi Oron said: “This impressive performance proves that authors’ societies are delivering value to the millions of creators they represent around the world. They have responded to rapidly changing technology, licensing digital services in new flexible ways, and handling trillions of data transactions. And they are fighting for the best licensing terms and the highest royalties possible in a world where powerful users are determined to avoid, or minimise, paying a fair return for their work.”

CISAC President, electronic music pioneer Jean-Michel Jarre, said: “CISAC is at the heart of a battle for the future of over 4 million creators worldwide. I am passionately involved in this struggle. Europe has now recognised that it is time for change: it is not acceptable for the law to shield large tech monopolies and sustain a systemic injustice for creators. There is now a message to get to the rest of the world: it is time for other governments to sit up and follow.”

The CISAC Global Collections Report provides exclusive in-depth data and analysis from CISAC’s 239 member authors’ societies, including SOCAN, in 121 countries.

The 2018 Report includes:
 10 individual country case studies;
 breakdowns by region;
 global growth forecasts on video streaming;
 for the first time, comprehensive pages of raw data including country and repertoire rankings.

Global Collections Report highlights:
 Music collections increase 6.0% to €8.34 billion
 Audiovisual collections rise 6.8% to €611 million
 Literature collections climb 5.2% to €227 million
 Visual arts royalties jump 19.0% to €208 million
 Dramatic repertoire collections grow 3.7%
 TV and radio continue to be the top use category at €3.89 billion, followed by live and background at €2.74 billion

CISAC’s global network of 239 societies licenses content and collects royalties on behalf of 4 million creators for uses including TV, radio, live, background, digital and private copying.

To download the report, CLICK HERE.

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Mike Raine is the Senior editor of Canadian Musician.