Creators’ Royalties Shift to Digital as CISAC Global Collections Hit Record €9.7 Billion

Worldwide royalty collections for creators of music, audiovisual, visual arts, drama and literature reached a record €9.65 billion in 2018, according to the 2019 Global Collections Report published today by CISAC (International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers). Royalties from digital sources jumped 29% to €1.64 billion, thanks to rapid global expansion of music and subscription video on-demand (SVOD) services. In the last 5 years, creators’ digital income has nearly tripled, now accounting for 17% of collections compared to 7.5% in 2014.

The increase in major markets’ digital collections – notably the United States, France and Japan – are the biggest drivers of global growth. This growth is helped by new and extended licensing deals between societies and digital platforms, from dedicated content services like Spotify to social media platforms such as Facebook and video on demand platforms such as Netflix and Amazon.

Global collections for music repertoire, accounting for the majority of the total, rose 1.8% to €8.5 billion, driven by a 29.6% growth in digital income and the continuing surge in subscription streaming revenues.

Total collections up 1% in 2018

Total collections in 2018, for all repertoires, grew 0.9%, the fifth consecutive year of growth. Over the five years since 2014, global collections by CISAC societies are up 25.4%. Digital growth, combined with resilience in the two other major uses (TV/radio and live/background), are continuing to offset declining income from physical media.

TV and radio, the largest collections source, declined 2.4% in 2018, while live and background revenue grew 0.5%. Combined, these two sectors have substantially grown since 2014, adding €653 million in revenue.

CISAC Director General Gadi Oron said: “This Report provides many reasons for optimism about our sector. Digital revenues show an impressive increase, have nearly tripled in the last five years and have enormous potential for further growth. More markets are seeing digital income taking the top position of all revenue streams, which is an extremely positive sign. In a landscape of fragmenting income sources, the role of authors societies in generating monetary value for millions of creators has never been more vital.”

Digital shows its growth potential

The Report shows other key indicators of the shift to digital: Asia-Pacific is a digital leader, with an online share of 26.3%, twice that of Europe at 13.3%; and Australasia, Sweden, South Korea, Mexico and China are in a growing group of “digital champions” where online revenues are now the top collections source. However, the Report also highlights the need for legislative action to bring fair creators’ remuneration, calling on governments to follow the example of the landmark EU Copyright Directive, adopted in April 2019.

Jean-Michel Jarre, CISAC President, said: “Digital is our future and revenues to creators are rising fast, but there is a dark side to digital, and it is caused by a fundamental flaw in the legal environment that continues to devalue creators and their works. That is why the European Copyright Directive is so momentous for creators everywhere. The Directive has sent an amazing, positive signal around the world, building a fairer balance between creators and the tech platforms”.

Other key highlights of the 2019 Report include:

• Global collections broken down by repertoire, type of use and region.
• Ten individual market case studies (Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, India, Italy, Malawi, Mexico, Poland, Senegal).
• Analysis of key legislative developments affecting creators’ remuneration in music, audiovisual visual arts, drama and literature.

Download Key Highlights of the Report
Download the 2019 Global Collections Report

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