Radios and TVs using audio with standard license ?


#1

Hello mastermind bros!
The sales are going well / not bad!
But on the invoices, I have noticed that radios and tv companies are buying my items with standard license.
Is this alright?
What do we do on those situations?


#2

Sadly, Envato didn’t come up with any idea to solve this.

One option Envato could do would be to change the license menu to a check box system so buyers have actively choose which license they need/want. The other solution would be to allow registering Audiojungle Items with a PRO (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Performance_rights_organisation), which Envato seems to have problems with. The only thing we Authors can do is letting broadcast buyers know that we are monitoring the broadcast use of our items (e.g. via TuneSat). I’ve already thought about adding a text to the description but I’m not sure if this is a good idea:

@ Broadcasters: I’m monitoring my Items via TuneSat (https://tunesat.com), please stay fair and choose the right license. Thank you.


#3

So tunesat is a PRO ? like Adrev? with the same problems? i already upload my track to Adrev but the only thing they detect is my own youtube channel.


#4

No @soundgridmedia , tunesat and AdRev are no PROs.

AdRev needs 4 months to display the first claims. Read the FAQ.


#5

But i read on the other thread AdRev is a PRO sites, and i already upload my track a year ago 11 track and i already saw several of them on some youtube channel but sadly AdRev didn’t find it, so what is the best for you? in terms of results?


#6

This is a common problem with the PRF (performance royalty free) business model. You can lose a lot of money with PRF both as a library and as a composer. AJ is telling people they need a broadcast license for broadcast use, but has no way to enforce it and loses compensation when the terms of a standard license are ignored. If the music had been PRO registered, it’s possible that the production company would have filed a cue sheet and a PRO would have caught it if the broadcaster didn’t have a blanket license, or, you would have received performance royalties if a blanket license for the broadcaster was in place or a single use license was paid to the PRO. In your case, if the name of a TV or radio broadcaster appears on the invoice, did AJ notice or question the use? Probably not and you may have lost the share of a higher priced broadcast license because of a failure to properly license the tracks, as well as performance royalties due to AJ’s use of the PRF business model. All I can say is that you should let AJ know what they may have missed and see if they will verify use as having been part of a broadcast and go after the broadcast license fee.

Why PRF?

The idea some PRF model users have is to charge a direct license to cover the right to perform the music publically in a production and include it as part of a broadcast license at a fee that’s higher than the standard license. This business model is mainly being used a few small libraries and micro-stock businesses that want to cater to small broadcasters doing in-house promos and productions, or media producers with productions destined to small broadcasters who don’t pay blanket PRO licenses because they don’t commonly broadcast productions with PRO registered music. This broadcast license/direct license is generally less expensive than a broadcaster would have to pay to a PRO for a per use license of registered music and some PRF libraries believe that provides similar compensation for the performance that performance royalties would provide if the music was PRO registered. The royalties that come from small broadcast use, like a cable documentary that airs a handful of times during off hours, can at times only be a few dollars, if that. So, the goal is to bring in more customers with small broadcast destined productions and issue the higher priced licenses. Things get more complicated…

Direct Licenses and PRO Registered Music Can = Headache

If you’re a library that issues a direct license on music that is PRO registered, you have to contact the PRO of the composer and publisher and let them know that you issued a direct license just in case a cue sheet gets filed. If you don’t, and a cue sheet turns up with a PRO, they will pay the royalties. If the broadcaster isn’t paying a blanket, the PRO will ask them for a license fee… but, you gave them a direct license and didn’t tell the PRO, and now there’s a possible argument. If you gave out a direct license on something, and the broadcaster involved does pay a blanket, by not telling the PRO, the composer and publisher get compensated a second time from the royalties when the direct license already covered the performance right and they should not have been compensated twice. Therefore, you have PRF, a model that does not allow for music to be PRO registered. That way, you can cater to small broadcasters, don’t have to run around talking to PROs about direct license issuances, avoid the aforementioned problems and get compensation for the performance without having to create publishing entities that would collect the publisher’s share of performance royalties for yourself. It should be noted, however, that technically, AJ would never be responsible for reporting these direct license to the PRO because it’s the obligation of the writer and the publisher to handle that and AJ is not a publisher. But for customer service purposes, the fallout for failure to inform the PRO would most harshly affect AJ.

PROBLEMS with PRF

1 - PRF is shortsighted. While it might work if all your broadcast use is small-time with small amounts of expected royalties, you can lose BIG if that turns out to not be the case and you’re getting moderate to large scale broadcast uses that would pay well for extended periods from each sold license. Once your business develops a catalog of quality music and you begin to offer broadcast licenses more regularly, I think you should abandon PRF all together and move up the food chain. AJ is hitting that point in terms of incoming quality as there is good music here. If they weed out some of the older, lower quality tracks and up their submission standards slightly, there is no reason they could not move AJ out from under the micro-stock marketplace shadow and into the RF library business. At the moment, I personally do not consider AJ a real music library, but it won’t take much for them to get there quickly if they want to get there. I believe if done right, the money would be multiples of what it is now and that’s the bottom line, isn’t it?. Right now, it’s very primitive in terms of how it handles both marketing and licensing music.

2 - You’re using the honor system and not everyone is honest. You think people will ask for broadcast licenses if a production will be broadcast, but they can easily get away with only requesting a standard license if you aren’t talking to them and using an automated system. It is extremely easy for them to just pay $19 and do whatever they want. You already told them that you are a PRF library that isn’t going after performance royalties. That’s pretty much the same as telling them you won’t look for any abuses. Some libraries will claim that’s not true, but ask them what they’re doing to enforce the licenses and you aren’t likely to get a response, or you get one that will never work. And by the way, RF micro-stock sites that allow PRO registration but don’t go after performance royalties are only 1/2 step better than PRF. But at least you can go after performance royalties on your own as long as your know the use and who the buyer was.

3 - It’s lazy. There is a bit of controversy regarding the issuance of direct licenses in lieu of performance royalties as there are situations where it’s a very bad idea. But it’s an accepted practice for some. A caveat is that unless you don’t mind fraud and abuse due to misunderstanding or not reading licenses, this should not be the norm. It should be on a case by case basis after consulting with the client either in writing or telephonically regarding the planned use, what their budget requirements dictate, and whether or not the broadcaster involved pays blanket PRO fees. Many RF sites tell clients that they need to contact the staff for rates relating to productions meant for broadcast. This is one of the reasons for that. If you tell me your production is a commercial that will air on network television, you are not going to get a direct license for performance rights included in your broadcast license. If you say it’s for a documentary that will air one time on the Discovery Channel at 11 PM on Saturday, you might get performance rights thrown in. And for that matter, broadcast licenses do not have to include performance rights. Many RF sites have tier licensing that does not include performance in any of the tiers. So, perhaps you see why I’m saying PRF is lazy. You’re avoiding the work outlined above in favor of taking someone’s word and collecting your small, but guaranteed, fee upfront. But by not putting in this work, you’re at risk of losing money and there is no way around it. When your music offering is just a portion of what you do in a marketplace, you let a lot of things slide.

4 - PRF means you limit the quality you will be able to offer since many good composers with experience will not touch it or will not place their best current music in PRF due to potential devaluation of their better tracks and possible loss of valuable performance royalties. Since some PROs will not allow you to remove your music from a catalog once it’s registered, good composers with great music in a back catalog under those PRO’s cannot use AJ as a possible marketing choice to revive those tracks because they cannot unregister that music (although I can’t image why they would want to do that). Just because it’s too old for a large production music library does not automatically make it unusable for a lower level target audience. In fact, it’s great for that purpose and AJ is missing it. This is music that may have run its course in the upper tier market, but hasn’t had a shot at this level. It isn’t necessarily outdated and the quality can be high.

Why Can’t AJ Just Allow PRO Registration and Call It a Day?

They can do exactly that if they want. All AJ has to do is allow PRO registration and inform the buyers about cue sheets, who is required to pay performance royalties, etc. They do not have to issue direct licenses and can continue tier licensing with out including performance rights. They simply have to advise the buyer that if something is used in a broadcast, the broadcaster may have to pay for a performance license if they don’t already pay a blanket. That’s it. The vast majority of those coming here will be TOTALLY unaffected since their productions are not for broadcast or other performance royalty generating purposes. They do not have to go after performance royalties for themselves by adding publishing entities if they do not want to do that and take on those responsibilities (and money). But we should have the ability to go after those royalties for ourselves and we can’t unless the music can be registered and our PRO information is provided to the license purchaser for cue sheet filing. This isn’t rocket science and it’s done my many, many RF libraries. It’s up to AJ as to how far they want to advance and up to us as to whether or not we will continue with this issue. I came because I think AJ will eventually allow PRO registration. We’ll see.


#7

Absolutely. But since Envato has no plans for allowing PRO, they could at least consider implementing that check box system for licenses.