ACCC is seeking to add conditions to APRA's licencing | radioinfo

ACCC is seeking to add conditions to APRA's licencing

Wednesday 05 June, 2019

The ACCC is calling for feedback on a proposal to reauthorise the APRA’s musical works licensing arrangements for a further five years with additional conditions.

The strengthened conditions are aimed at increased transparency and to help protect songwriters and small businesses when dealing with APRA.

ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh says“It’s more efficient for APRA members to collect royalties jointly, rather than every artist having to collect their own royalties and monitor compliance.  However, APRA already has a near-monopoly, and the exclusivity provisions it has with artists makes its position even stronger. This raises a risk of higher prices for businesses that play music, and other inefficiencies or restrictions for APRA members.”

Respondents to the ACCC’s recent consultation process frequently expressed concerns about the lack of transparency and accountability of APRA, both to its members and also to those businesses from which it collects licence fees.

Under the ACCC’s proposal, APRA would also be required to publish information about how it calculates licence fees; to produce a plain English guide to its distribution policies; to publish an annual transparency report with information on rights revenue, operating costs and payments to members; and to continue the “Resolution Pathways” alternative dispute resolution scheme set up in response to a previous ACCC condition.

The ACCC is seeking submissions on its draft decision, including on the proposed conditions, by 5 July 2019.

Further information, including details about how to make a submission, and a copy of APRA’s application for reauthorisation, are available on the ACCC’s Public Register at Australasian Performing Right Association Limited.

 
 
 

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blackbird
7 June 2019 - 11:03am
I have tried, on a couple of occasions, to set up an online radio station. To be able to legally play music and broadcast to AUS/NZ IPs you have to pay APRA a nominal fee and then a significantly larger fee to the PPCA.

The problem for small businesses in this sense is that there are no options for small webcasters to grow. You really have to already be a major player with large market share and capital, due to the PPCA's fee structure (below).

For each Quarter, you must pay PPCA a Licence Fee (exclusive of GST) which is the greater of:

a. $0.0021 (exclusive of GST) per Stream (excluding Streams of less than 30 seconds in duration), per User (Stream Rate); or

b. a minimum fee which is determined according to the Total Revenue and the number of Channels offered as part of the Service (Minimum Fee) –

Total Revenue/Quarter (GST excl) - Minimum Fee/Quarter (GST excl)
$0 to $5,000 - $1,000
$5,001 to $10,000 $2,500
$10,001 + $5,000; or

c. 25% of Total Revenue (exclusive of GST).

The only way someone is paying $0.0021 per Stream per User is if they have huge Cume. For someone who wishes to start a small online radio station as a business, they would probably be earning under $5000 a quarter and also close to zero listeners, not until their branding starts to attract listeners.

If the ACCC wants to help small business, target the fee structure with the PPCA. I don't think any of us in radio wish artists to not get paid for their work, but this could open up more exposure to their music and perhaps increase jobs for radio people in general. We might even see a boom as we have with YouTube. Many of the big YouTubers are media businesses all with their own staff, like a typical media organisation.
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