SABC royalty tariff for music played to be increased
The SABC royalty tariff for music played across its 18 radio station and television channels is to be increased from 3.2% to 4%.
This SABC royalty tariff announcement was made last Thursday, 19 May by the national broadcaster and should be welcome news for musicians, music producers and song writers.
A higher percentage is a welcome gesture although there has been quite a bit of negativity ever since SABC announced that all their stations would play 90% South African content for the next 3 months.
The main gripe seems to be the allegation that SABC are the worst at paying royalties and that their systems of tracking needletime – the playing of music – is flawed and not accurately reported on.
How do you get paid?
There are still many, many independent artists who are not registered with one of the 4 collection organisations. Simply put; you cannot get paid unless your compositions are registered.
The 4 organisations are Southern African Music Rights Organisation (SAMRO), South African Music Performance Rights Association (SAPRA), Independent Music Performance Rights Association (IMPRA) and the Association of Independent Record Companies (ARIC).
But right now there are reportedly millions of outstanding royalty payments that have not been made so question marks over the collection agencies have also arisen on a regular basis.
Then let’s also not forget that the SABC is running at a massive loss so it’s kind of strange that this new SABC royalty tariff has been announced which simply means they will need to pay out even more money.
SABC COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng on the new SABC royalty tariff; “This move [to increase the royalty tariff] is meant to stimulate the music industry, through creating jobs and unearthing new talent. The SABC also wants to restore the dignity of creatives to move away from a situation of creatives in the music industry dying as paupers.”
Whatever the underlying motive is (many say it is political), the new SABC royalty tariff and the 90% local content initiative can only be a good thing for local artists and composers.
How amazing would it be to see the music industry grow again in South Africa?