CISAC, the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers, have today released their global collections report — showing that royalty collections for creators of music, audiovisual, visual arts, drama and literature has reached a record €9.65 billion in 2018.
One of the biggest factors highlighted by the report is the uptick in royalties from digital sources. These have exploded up 29% to €1.64 billion due to rapid global expansion of music and subscription video on-demand (SVOD) services with France, the USA and Japan highlighted as particular growth markets.
The potential of digital is clear to see, however the report found that for audiovisual authors digital only accounts for 2.2% of total royalty collections. This only underlines the need for proper legislative action to ensure fair remuneration for creators for the online use of their works. The EU Copyright Directive, adopted earlier this year, is a good example of this, and it is now vital that it’s implemented by EU member states and replicated across the globe.
Directors UK member and Suffragette director Sarah Gavron highlighted the importance of digital royalties as a source of income for creators: “The industry will only become stronger and the stories more varied and richer if it allows access for creatives — at the moment many creatives drop out or don’t even begin as it is financially unviable.”
Screenwriter and Writers and Directors Worldwide (W&DW) President Yves Nilly concurred: “In Europe, 85% of screenwriters and directors are freelancers and half of us already need a second job to survive. This means that we have no negotiating power against the giant digital distributors that have emerged on the back of our work. If we’re to hold on to our rights, they need to be unwaivable and set into law.”
Meanwhile, Okja director Bong Joon-ho said: “Directors, as creators, rightfully deserve fair remuneration. Let's work together to implement a proper system.”
Away from digital, the report found that total collections across all repertoires grew by 1% in 2018 — however the report also shows that collections in TV and radio declined globally by 2.4% in 2018 despite an overall increase in collections in the audiovisual sector of 22% across the 5-years since 2014.