FIRST LOOK: THE DIGITAL BUSINESS IN SONGS
By Susan Butler
You are about to read a very special report, one that provides revenue figures never before shared and in a way never before calculated—by product category rather than by type of right. As such, it represents what I believe to be a very important turning point in the business of songs, one in which I initiated in the hope of providing useful business information for strategic planning in this segment of the industry. Before this report today, no one has had access to the information provided in this way.
CISAC, the Paris-based international trade group for collective rights societies in several copyright industries, publishes its Global Collections Report 2015, sharing general collections figures and trends among its member societies. The 65-page report is a big change from past reports in that it provides much better and more accurate figures from the CISAC-member societies and better economic analysis than in all of the group’s past reports.
This year CISAC also hired me to write some brief commercial marketplace highlights for the publication. In addition, we took a bold step further. We brought in some music publishers that make direct license agreements with digital service providers (DSPs) outside of the society network in six territories in order to take a look at the marketplace in a different way. This could only be accomplished with the full cooperation and efforts of all of the major music publishers, most of the largest independent music publishers that make such direct deals and the collective rights societies in those territories. We achieved a wonderful level of cooperation.
We call it the First Look project, taking just baby steps toward achieving a new way of looking at the digital music market for musical compositions.
In order to pull this data together, I agreed with the music publishers and the societies to only use and reveal in the aggregate the revenue figures I received from the participants and only as written for the CISAC Global Collections Report. For this reason, this week’s Music Confidential presents the First Look project as published in today’s CISAC Global Collections Report 2015. A link to obtain the full CISAC report (free) is at the end of this report. This full version also includes graphs not included in my report, below, and of course information about the society collections.