UK musicians to get paid for YouTube plays

31 Aug 2007

Over 10 million pieces of music will generate revenue for UK artists in the MCPS-PRS Alliance after an exclusive deal with video sharing site YouTube.

These works have been licensed to YouTube so that the 50,000 songwriters, composers and publishers will receive payment from an undisclosed one-off fee paid by YouTube to the MCPS-PRS Alliance.

“We’re pleased to be working in co-operation with the MCPS-PRS Alliance to provide the YouTube community in the UK with the best possible user experience,” said Chad Hurley, CEO and co-founder of YouTube.

“This agreement is another great example of how we are working with the music industry to explore new and creative ways to compensate music creators,” he added.

YouTube visitors that use music from these 10 million tracks will be able to play it over their own video clips without infringing on copyright as it had in the past.

This is one of the first deals of its kind where payment is made directly to the composers and songwriters instead of through the record company which represents them.

Steve Porter, chief executive of the MCPS-PRS Alliance, said that this was the “first collecting society outside the US”.

“Whether it is music videos, user uploads or other audio visual content, our agreement will allow our 50,000 songwriter, composer and music publisher members to be paid when their creative talents are being enjoyed on YouTube’s service across the UK,” said Porter.

The MCPS-PRS Alliance is a not-for-profit agency that works on behalf of composers to make sure payment is made from any use of their work, “from live performance to TV and radio, CDs to DVDs, downloads, streams and everything in between”.

By Marie Boran