Live musical performances (including online performances) are legally required to pay a percentage of proceeds to Performing Rights Organizations who collect and distribute funds on behalf of intellectual property holders (songwriters). PROs (or, widely referred to as CMOs in Europe) collect funds and then distribute those funds to their members (songwriters) based on the usage of their copyrighted material (songs).
PROs have sister agreements with other PROs. What this means is that if a Canadian performer is a member of SOCAN, they are, in essence, fit to be paid out for the usage of their songs from most other PROs from around the world.
Side Door collects remittances automatically and distributes them to the appropriate PROs. Remittance is directed toward the appropriate corresponding PROs for locations of the audience(s) - for example, ASCAP/BMI in USA, SOCAN in Canada, PRS in UK, etc. The location of the performance or performer has no bearing - it is the locations of the audience that matter.
Artists who are members of a PRO should submit their setlists from both online or in-person shows to their member organization. If the artist is performing original material, they will earn back the remittance revenue in due course via their PRO.
Note for Side Door Hosts/Venues/Presenters:
Any public physical space or business, such as a coffee shop or performance hall, where music happens (either as a live performance or even a playlist through speakers), may be legally required to have a license or agreement with the PRO in the country where the space is located.
As a host of live art and music, there may come a time when your local PRO will reach out to you and ask you to obtain a license. We would like to give you the tools to answer these questions, and also put your mind at ease. With the shows you book through Side Door, you are NOT required to acquire such a license from the PRO. Side Door covers all licence fees on behalf of ALL hosts for any show completed with Side Door, as stated in all settlement sheets. That means hosts who DO hold a licence for non-Side Door related activities do not need to claim these Side Door shows in their annual reporting.
For any show done *outside of Side Door* hosts are still responsible to acquire and pay for a licence to ensure music royalties are paid to artists. If you’d like to learn more about this, we would encourage you to research locally relevant rules and regulations. You can find out what your local PRO is HERE.