What you need to know about Music Licensing

What you need to know about Music Licensing

Do you need a licence to play music in a gym?

Music played out loud in a gym, music played in a yoga studio, music played in a cross fit session, music played in a PT session is legally different to music at home. A business needs permission – a licence – for the use of OneMusic’s catalogue. A licence is more important than music volume, choice of speakers, streaming service or music device.
If you run a gym, a yoga, barre or Pilates studio, if you run training sessions (either indoors or outdoors like cross-fit), or you run functional fitness, Zumba, circuit, martial arts, boxing or aquatic fitness classes or you run boot camps and the like and your use our music, the Fitness, Exercise & Wellbeing licence scheme is for you.

My music is supplied by a background music supplier, do I need a OneMusic licence?

A background music supplier (Supplier) is a company that creates and supplies curated playlists and tailors them to a business type and specific clientele. In the likely event that the music you use through your Supplier is represented by OneMusic you still require a licence from OneMusic. Although the OneMusic licence fee may be subject to a deduction if for example, all of the recordings are legitimately licensed by the supplier from another copyright owner (e.g. a record label).
However, if you are a retailer, service provider, café or restaurant, your Supplier may be able to cover your OneMusic licence fees within their contractual arrangements with you. This option is not available if you also use music not provided by your Supplier (e.g. live performances, karaoke, TV screens showing free or pay TV) and you will need a licence directly from OneMusic to cover all those uses including music from the Supplier.
If you are unsure of the option you have selected with your Supplier, please advise OneMusic of the Supplier details and we will be able to confirm this on your behalf. Alternatively, you may contact the Supplier yourself.

Why do I need to pay more to OneMusic to use a Personal Digital Music Service?

According to their Terms of Use, the digital music services that most of us use at home, may only be used for personal and domestic purposes.
You can verify this by reading Spotify’s Terms and Conditions of Use ‘Your rights to use the Spotify Service’ under clause 3Other services have their own Terms and Conditions you can research.
However, whatever the source of the music used at your organisation, if you use OneMusic Australia’s music then you’ll still need a licence from OneMusic to play it in your business.
In addition, if you copy OneMusic Australia’s music, for instance from one CD to another, or you stream it from a personal digital music service, then you’ll also need coverage called “Digital Copy/Delivery”.
You should be aware that a OneMusic Australia licence, even when it includes Digital Copy/Delivery only gives you permission to use our music in your business (or event); it does not override the Terms of Use for the personal digital music service you are using, nor does it give you permission to use that particular digital music service for a commercial purpose – that permission can only come from the owners of that digital music service.
Even with our licence, the use of digital music streaming services by you in your business may be in breach of the terms and conditions of your end user agreement with that service. You should check with your service provider.
You may be better to consider a commercially licensed digital music service.  A list of these music services can be found in the Background Music Guide.

Where do my OneMusic licence fees go?

We care about ensuring that the licence fees you pay are distributed (paid out) to the rights holders in the most accurate and cost effective way possible. OneMusic distributes the fees it collects to APRA AMCOS and PPCA, the bodies behind the licensing initiative. Both entities are the same in that, after the deduction of administration and operational costs, all fees collected are distributed to members or licensors.
Although separate companies, in the financial year 2018/2019 APRA AMCOS’ and PPCA’s costs to revenue ratio was similar at approximately 14%. This means that around 86 cents in the dollar earned in licence fees collected by APRA AMCOS and PPCA is being paid to each organisation’s rights holders. Those costs compare very favourably to organisations providing the same service overseas. 
Under OneMusic APRA AMCOS and PPCA maintain their own distribution practices and policies and are available online. 
Both APRA AMCOS and PPCA are always seeking to achieve a delicate balance in their distribution practices – a balance between accuracy on the one hand and minimising the administration that would be required in track by track music use reports that businesses would have to submit.
The following represent the main sources of music data the two organisations use to make their distributions to music creators:
  • Individual commercial radio and television stations reporting the music they broadcast;
  • Digital download services and record labels reporting the tracks or CDs they sell and their sales volumes;
  • Services using Music Recognition Technology like digital fingerprinting and audio-recognition to match performances/broadcasts to their databases;
  • Data from music providers who supply programmed curated music for specific industries, such as fitness;
  • Background music suppliers who provide us with music reports from their clients’ playlists; and
  • Set lists of musical works performed by artists and musicians at live/dance events and festivals supplied to APRA by event promoters.
Music licence fines from OneMusic Australia (APRA AMCOS or PPCA) are determined by a Judge at Court. Fines vary and can be based on how long the unlicensed music has been playing, interest charges, extra costs for damages and legal fees.

Posting videos with music online?

A OneMusic licence does not cover you if you want to record a video for your business, set this to music from our repertoire (or have music audible in the background) and then post that video online.
Other licences and permissions are needed.
In order to create a video containing commercial released music, and then post it online, there are three areas of copyright which must be cleared.
1. Synchronisation (Sync)
Whenever music is included in any type of video (an audio/visual production), this is referred to as a synchronisation. You must get synchronisation rights cleared to create any video, usually through the publisher of the song.
2. Master Rights
If you are using any recording of a song you have not created yourself, you must obtain permission to use the recording (or “master rights”) from the record label or owner of the recording. If you are using your own recording (e.g. a cover version you have commissioned) then you do not need to seek master rights.
3. Communication Rights
To then make this video available online, the communication right to “broadcast” (i.e. stream) the video from a website must be cleared through APRA AMCOS, as they administer these rights on behalf of composers and music publishers.
For more information on communication licences, please email medialicensing@apra.com.au with the website where the video will be hosted, whether the video will be generating any revenue, and if the video is an advertisement. They may require more information depending on these answers.
YouTube & Facebook
APRA AMCOS licences YouTube and Facebook directly, but only for for the ‘streaming’ of videos.  This means no additional rights need to be cleared with APRA AMCOS to upload a video directly to YouTube.
You will still need to get/clear/arrange Sync and Master rights, as above.

How much are music licence fines from OneMusic Australia (APRA AMCOS or PPCA)?

Music licence fines from OneMusic Australia (APRA AMCOS or PPCA) are determined by a Judge at Court. Fines vary and can be based on how long the unlicensed music has been playing, interest charges, extra costs for damages and legal fees.

Setting up your business?

You need permission for most music played for a commercial purpose including at a fitness or wellbeing business – outdoors or indoors.
The simplest way to get that permission is through a music licence from OneMusic, partners to AUSactive. Blanket licences cover the vast majority of the world’s commercially-released music.