From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Indian Performing Right Society
Mains level : Civil socities and their functioning in India
- The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Mumbai Police has registered an FIR against a film producer others for alleged criminal breach of trust and failure of payment.
- The FIR was registered on a complaint by the Indian Performing Right Society (IPRS). This is the first criminal case initiated by the IPRS after it was re-registered as a copyright society in 2017.
Indian Performing Right Society
- The IPRS is a representative body of artists, including music owners, composers, lyricists, and publishers of music.
- It collects royalties due to the artists if their work is used anywhere from a wedding to a New Year function or on radio or TV — in other words, wherever music is played.
- The body was set up in 1969, and re-registered as a copyright society in 2017, following which it started functioning actively.
- The IPRS has its offices in Mumbai, and lyricist Javed Akhtar is its chairman.
- A 2012 amendment in The Copyright Act, 1957 laid down that artists would get 50% of royalties every time their work was used, even if the copyright remained with the production house or the music brand.
- It meant that every time a song was played in, say, a large party in a hotel or by a radio station, or streamed or even used as a mobile phone ringtone, 50% of the royalty would go to the production house or music company.
- The other 50% would be split between the lyricist and composer of the song.
- The IPRS is responsible for collecting the 50% royalty that is due to artists involved in “literary work accompanied to music” — meaning lyricists, music composers, and publishers of music.
- While even individual artists can theoretically approach the users of their work directly, it is likely to be a difficult and long drawn-out process.
- As members of IPRS, they have better infrastructure at their disposal to press their claim and collect the money due to them.
How does the process of licensing with the IPRS work?
- The IPRS has a database of around 10 million songs, including Indian and international numbers, for which it collects royalty.
- If cases of big events, the IPRS generally approach the organizers beforehand to inform them about the licensing required to play the songs of artists who are registered with them.
- Most online streaming platforms are registered with IPRS, and licensed to use the artists’ songs.
- After being re-registered as a copyright society in 2017 under the amended Copyright Act, the IPRS sent letters to all media platforms, asking them to ensure that artists are paid 50% of the royalty as per the Act.