Should Performers Get Paid for Radio Plays?

April 5, 2013{ 7 Comments }

Should Radio Pay Performance Royalties to Performers and Sound Recording OwnerAccording to a story on Digital Music News, the National Association of Broadcasters is lobbying to block legislation that would force radio stations to pay royalties to musical performers and owner of sound recordings. As the law currently stands, they’re only required to pay royalties to publishers and songwriters.

In many countries around the world, performance royalties for radio play are paid to all four entities: songwriter, publisher, performer, and owner of recording.

Those countries who don’t? Iran. North Korea. Rwanda. The United States.

According to the Digital Music News story, the US radio industry made more than the entire worldwide record industry. Do you think they should have to share some of that money with the people who actually recorded and performed that music?

Let us know in the comments section below.

An Indie's Guide to Getting 
Played on the Radio

  • You closing statement would be true if radio actually played anything close to "New music".

  • to Garnet Hawkins: Not possible to pay the bills with happiness as currency.

  • Nothing is free in this world, everyone should be compensated accordingly. To receive something when you give, it's only natural and fair!

  • Over here in the UK all radio stations (even non-commercial) have to pay P.R.O license fees, mainly to PRS. I've always found it odd that they have to pay since they help to promote the tracks they play.

  • ZackAttack51

    I assume we all realize that in the USA, most radio stations are owned by a few large corporations, who use music (without compensation to the creators/owners) to attract listeners, and sell high priced ad time based on the estimated number of these listeners, to the tune of millions per year. Sound about right?

    Do you know why YouTube serves copyright enfringement notices? Or why companies like Apple and Samsung sue each other all the time over patent issues? Because even in America you don't get to make a bunch of money 'exposing' somebody else's hard work. When was the last time terrestrial radio alone 'broke' a new act? The 90's?

    In counties that have Performing Rights Societies (except the 4 you mention), radio stations pay a small royalty to the creator(s) of the songs they play. The people I know at radio stations are happy to pay it – they love music and want to support their favorite artists, and get to make a fair profit from their advertising because, not in spite of it. They do not pay US-based artists however, since US stations do not pay international artists there for radio play.

    Since when are corporations entitled to profits at the expense of the people who make their 'products'?