Danny Michel, Facebook.
Danny Michel, Facebook.

SOCAN Expands Online Concert Payments Fund

Canada’s Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada has expanded its online performance royalties’ program, effective March 25.

SOCAN members will now be able to receive performance and reproduction rights royalties from free and ticketed online concerts on more digital platforms for one-time live digital broadcasts and copies of music.

The permanent change replaces SOCAN's well-received Encore initiative launched last May that paid royalties 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," PRO CEO Jennifer Brown, said in announcing the program. "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 to acts supplying set lists to a maximum of 30 concerts per quarter per performer. The funds will be distributed to the music creator and publisher rights holders 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 members 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 added.

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