PPL confirms livestream licensing plans

PPL confirms livestream licensing plans

PPL has confirmed it is looking at livestream licensing opportunities.

The music livestreaming sector has boomed during the pandemic and PRS For Music moved to put in place a licensing payment structure for online events - although not without controversy.

While PRS For Music would be the primary licensing body in the UK covering compositions, PPL could also provide a dedicated licensing system for recorded music featured in ticketed livestreams (such as DJ sets) if labels, performers and rights-holders back the proposal.

“We're currently speaking to the rights owners,” said PPL CEO Peter Leathem. “There are going to be rights that need to be licensed. The more pressing issue has been the live side, hence PRS having to do something ahead of us, but there is a desire to use recorded music in livestreaming as well so we do need to get that covered off.

“We're currently consulting with members as to whether they want us to provide a role. The record companies are quite often keen to do direct licensing, so we're just trying to [determine] whether there is a service that PPL would be able to provide. That's an ongoing discussion at the moment.”

There are going to be rights that need to be licensed

Peter Leathem

During the pandemic, PPL and PRS worked together to facilitate online streaming of gym classes to allow instructors to carry on running their businesses and ensuring they were fully licensed.

PPL is currently reviewing its approach for paid-for linear webcasting and livestreaming, with subscription and per-event models being considered.

PPL’s Linear Webcast Licence can be used to license free livestreaming events. For paid livestreams, the collection society is dealing with individual licence requests on a case-by-case basis, as well as licensing individual platforms providing livestreaming facilities.

Subscribers can click here for our recent Q&A Spotlight feature with Peter Leathem.

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