London-headquartered collection society PRS for Music has extended its Nexus program with an aim to link songwriter and composer information to music recordings before they are released.
This ensures that royalties are quickly paid to rightsholders, the company said in a press release on Wednesday (September 6).
PRS for Music unveiled its Nexus works metadata portal last year, with the goal to “make it easier for streaming services to provide writer credits alongside existing performing artist information.”
“For the first time we are publishing large volumes of the data we use to track and pay royalties. Giving greater access to this data opens new possibilities which will ultimately improve accuracy and writer credits,” PRS for Music CEO Andrea Czapary Martin said in June.
Most recently, the CMO said it is extending its Nexus program to help the group “more quickly and cost-effectively, maximize the value of members’ works online.”
PRS for Music represents the rights of more than 165,000 songwriters, composers, and music publishers worldwide, working to protect and enhance the value of their rights. In 2022, PRS for Music collected £964 million and paid out £836.2 million in royalties.
In an era where hundreds of thousands of new recordings are uploaded to streaming services daily, music creators and publishers grapple with the challenge of identifying when and where their works are being used, PRS for Music said.
This problem is exacerbated by the lack of metadata, which includes composition and lyric details, provided to streaming services by those uploading recordings. As a result, it can take months, or even years, for songwriters and composers to be connected with their works in recordings, leading to delayed royalty payments, the CMO said.
“Incomplete or inaccurate metadata too often results in significant delays in royalty payments to creators. The industry has long recognized the value of providing complete recording and works data at the point of release, but progress towards achieving this has been too slow.”
Mark Krajewski, PRS for Music
PRS for Music’s Managing Director of Strategic Alliances and Chief Information Officer Mark Krajewski ,said: “Incomplete or inaccurate metadata too often results in significant delays in royalty payments to creators. The industry has long recognized the value of providing complete recording and works data at the point of release, but progress towards achieving this has been too slow.”
Supported by the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC), PRS for Music’s Nexus program aims to address this issue by allowing music release contributors to instantly generate a unique identifier for their work.
This identifier establishes a connection between the International Standard Recording Code (ISRC) for the recording and the International Standard Works Code (ISWC) for the work. The program is claimed to simplify the process for contributors to include an ISWC alongside their existing data submissions to streaming services.
“We have taken on the challenge of simplifying the process of obtaining an ISWC, removing one of the key barriers in the existing data chain,” added Krajewski.
PRS for Music CEO Andrea Czapary Martin said: “This pioneering initiative is designed to solve a worldwide issue and revolutionize how songwriters are paid. Linking ISWC’s to ISRC’s at the point of release is crucial and has long been an obstacle for music creators.”
She added: “We are committed to driving the entire music industry towards a single and unified data strategy, a common rail which is built on transparency and trust. This is why we launched our Nexus programme, which is aimed at moving the industry from merely discussing its data problems to solving them.”
“Bringing together the ISWC and ISRC at the point of release of a song has a huge potential for creators and rights holders and would be a giant leap forward for the industry, as a whole.”
Gadi Oron, CISAC
CISAC Director General Gadi Oron also commented on the move, saying “CISAC is delighted to support PRS for Music in this project. Bringing together the ISWC and ISRC at the point of release of a song has a huge potential for creators and rights holders and would be a giant leap forward for the industry, as a whole.”
CISAC is a global network of authors’ societies with 225 member societies in 116 countries, representing over four million creators from various artistic fields. Established in 1926, CISAC protects creators’ rights and interests on a global scale.
The new project will run for six months, with PRS for Music overseeing testing and Spanish Point Technologies creating a new test environment that interfaces with CISAC’s existing ISWC system. Upon completion, the findings will be evaluated and, if successful, handed over to CISAC for further development.
The initiative is part of the Nexus program, which also encompasses the metadata portal introduced in 2022 and the recently launched Get Paid Guide, an educational initiative developed in collaboration with The Ivors Academy, the UK Music Publishers Association (MPA), and the UK’s Intellectual Property Office.
Music Business Worldwide