Public performance royalties: Government consults on new UK regime for US sound recordings

2 February 2024

UK law permits PPL to collect royalties on the public performance of recordings, but performers on US recordings are not eligible for distribution, except for digital transmissions, under the principle of material reciprocity. The Government may reverse this principle, with US labels (and their UK subsidiaries) likely to lose out.

The EU Member States are also grappling with the issue. Rethinking reciprocity is more disruptive there than it would be in the UK, because of how the 'artist's share' of royalties has been treated.

Progress has stalled in the US on legislation to provide for sound recording radio broadcast rights, which would be of huge benefit to performers and labels, but is ferociously opposed by broadcasters.

Recent reports