back to article Brit musos now trouser more crumpled fivers from online music than radio

For the first time, online services are dishing out more money to British songwriters and composers than radio. Music authors bagged £641.8m last year worldwide from the performance of their music, up 1.7 per cent from 2011. The annual figures (PDF) from the Performing Rights Society (aka "PRS for Music" - still) provide an …


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  1. taxman

    Why is it

    that if radio pay PRS a fee for music 'performed' that a pub, say, also has to pay PRS for playing the same song on the radio to customers/staff. So double payment for one performance.

    Always found that odd - and that people agree to it.

    1. Colin Miller

      Re: Why is it

      I assume that its because the PRS works on the (false) basis of 1 radio = 1 listener. Does seem a bit of a rip off tho.

    2. Dr.S

      Re: Why is it

      It is due to how copyright is constructed. The radio company pays for the right to stream/broadcast the content, while you as a listener need pay nothing at all since the act of listening is not relevant to copyright (only copying the content and various forms of making it available to the public are).

      However, when you put the content on loudspeakers in a pub or such place, then you are the one making the content available to the public, and thus the one needing some form of license from the copyright owner.

      Each new act of copying or making the content available to the public needs to be licensed.

      Not saying that I personally think this is ideal, or that it must necessary be like this. In fact, copyright has historically solved this situation in different ways. But currently, this is the way it works.

  2. g e


    But I thought everyone in the music industry was at death's door due to piracy

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Graham Marsden

      Re: Oh

      Yes, they have been ever since the advent of the Cassette Tape prompted claims that "Home Taping is Killing Music!"

  3. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  4. Tom 7 Silver badge

    You say british musos trouser or

    do you really mean the people who own British musos

  5. Ron Eve


    This'll be the same PRS that cold call companies asking the question 'do you listen to music in your office?' And on a reply of 'yes' from the receptionist/ intern/ dogsbody, sends the company a massive bill for infringing licensing.

    No not making it up. I know 3 companies where this has happened (two of them very small, < 5 people).

    1. Graham Marsden

      Re: Hmmm...

      I work from home and had one of these calls saying they were from the PRS and asking if I listened to music whilst I worked.

      I replied "Hear that sound...?"

      "What sound?"

      "Exactly!" and put the phone down.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Ive had them call a few customers say PRS made inquiries about their hold music....i told them to tell them to put it where the sun doesn't shine as it all came from a royalty free archive.

    I had another customer where they (stupidly) answered the do you listen to music while you work, when PRS tried to start to try and give them a bill, they gave everyone headphones and explained that the receptionist miss understood and should have clarified the question being asked. Yes everyone was listening to music, was using a personal listening device (not through a loud speaker) and invited PRS in to observe. They eventually gave up realising they would have to leave there desks and went off to try and bill someone else...

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