SOCAN has announced an expanded program to enable music creators and publishers to earn more money from online performances.
SOCAN members will now be able to receive royalties from both free and ticketed online concerts on more digital platforms. Both "performance" and "reproduction" rights royalties will be paid for one-time live digital broadcasts and copies of music.
The permanent change replaces SOCAN's "Encore" initiative launched last May 2020 in which royalties were paid for live performances on Facebook and Facebook-owned Instagram.
"Over the past year, online concerts have become an essential way for SOCAN members to connect with their fans and earn income," says Jennifer Brown, interim-CEO of SOCAN. "Our expanded distribution will return more royalties to those who have rightfully earned them for their work, helping music creators and publishers through this difficult period."
For qualifying free online concerts, including those on Facebook Live, Instagram Live, YouTube, and Twitch, $75 will be distributed. This applies to all setlists provided and to a maximum of 30 concerts per quarter per performer. The funds will be distributed to the music creator and publisher rightsholders of the music performed. More digital platforms will be added as they become licensed with SOCAN.
For paid/ticketed online concerts on any digital platform, performance royalties will be distributed to rights holders as they would be for in-person concerts. Reproduction royalties will begin to be distributed later in 2021. The new online concert distribution rules will remain in effect post-pandemic.
"Even when the time comes to welcome the return of in-person live performances, online concerts will continue to be an important source of music creators and publishers' royalties, as our members realize new ways to bring their invaluable music to all to enjoy," Brown adds.