Irish Music Rights Organisation to use big-data technology to process royalties

13 May 2014

The Irish Music Rights Organisation's Victor Finn and John Corley, CTO of Spanish Point Technologies

The Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO) is deploying Microsoft cloud and big-data technology to track copyrighted works online and match the legitimate uses of music to their rightful owners.

Using the Microsoft Cloud Operating System platform, IMRO will use the technology to sift through massive volumes of data via streaming providers, search engines and social networks to ensure copyright owners are paid for their work.

The task is made all the harder by the proliferation of smart devices on mobile networks and the changing ways consumers access music.

“Data volume is exploding,” explained Victor Finn CEO of IMRO. “We needed to keep pace with the ever-increasing evolution of online data. 

“We are continuing to see increases in new forms of data from a large host of suppliers, including online music streams, such as Spotify. We are experiencing a vast number of ways in which music is being accessed via a proliferation of new devices, such as smartphones and tablets,” Finn said.

Cutting through massive volumes of data

After weighing up various options, IMRO settled on Microsoft’s Cloud OS, which uses Microsoft SQL Server to manage the growing number of databases, and Windows Azure, to securely develop, manage and store critical information.

This gave IMRO the ability to adapt to new sources of revenue without having to re-engineer their existing software systems and also reduced their up-front capital spend, saving time for the not-for-profit organisation and its members.

“The platform-as-a-service solution delivered by Spanish Point Technologies gives members a secure, easy to use sign-on capability, enabling them to quickly upload their work so that they get paid for their use of without any delays,” said Finn.

IMRO licensed the software to its affiliate in Canada, and Spanish Point is also in discussions through IMRO with a number of other music rights organisations across Europe to deliver the solution on the integrated Microsoft Cloud OS platform.

John Corley, CTO of Spanish Point Technologies, said moving to Windows Azure enabled them to re-architect key aspects of the solution to boost performance. 

“A process which took three to four days to run now takes under a day,” he said.  

“Calculating royalties based on all radio plays, TV programmes and online downloads is a massive task, and requires a significant amount of data.  

“As well as supercharging performance, Windows Azure enabled us to build in high availability, based on geo-redundancy at a fraction of the cost of more traditional approaches,” Corley added.

Microsoft is a Silicon Republic Featured Employer, comprised of top tech companies that are hiring now

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years