Feeds

Despite pub massacre, British songwriter revenue nudges up

CDs now for Xmas only?

The Power of One Infographic

Performance royalties for British artists increased last year, driven by international agreements. Paid music use overseas was up almost 20 per cent to £166.9m, a healthy part of the £623m recorded by PRS For Music for 2009.

Britain is one of only three music exporters in the world - in other words, UK talent brings in more income from overseas sales and performance than we pay out to overseas acts*. PRS for Music collects performance revenue on compositions on behalf of composers and songwriters from radio, TV and venues such as shopping malls and hairdressers. It also collects mechanical royalties, which is the songwriters' (small) cut of a record sale. The PPL collects the other royalty, on the sound recording itself.

Digital revenues remain a small part of the picture - a mere £30m, but for the first time they grew faster than CD revenues declined. Deals saw songwriters benefit from MySpace, YouTube and Spotify.

"We are yet to see whether this sector is on the right trajectory to compensate creators for the loss of traditional CD and DVD royalties," the PRS notes.

Radio proved a tough market, since payments are related to advertising.

Historical anomaly: the mighty radio lobby always had far more clout than the fledgling record business. Politicians genuinely feared the nation's crystal sets booming out disparaging material, so when Big Radio asked them to jump, their only question was how high. Politicians don't really fear bloggers or tweeters in the same way.

Attempts by PRS For Music and the PPL to put the screws on offices have proved controversial, but snagged songwriters an extra £2.2m last year, according to PRS figures. It partly compensated for the desperate pub scene - 39 close each week, and pretty much each one paid its annual fee. Overall pub and club revenues fell 5.3 per cent.

Ominously, the PRS notes that "More sales are shifting into the fourth quarter each year as CDs become a 'gift purchase'".

Last year we noted how long the CD was taking to die. Maybe it's the new woolly jumper. ®

* Abba-riffic Sweden is the third net exporter. You can guess the other.

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330
If the person in front reclines their seat, this could get interesting
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
Want to beat Verizon's slow Netflix? Get a VPN
Exec finds stream speed climbs when smuggled out
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.