The MLC Process

Starting in January 2021, The MLC will issue and administer blanket mechanical licenses for eligible streaming and download services (digital service providers or DSPs) in the United States. The MLC will then collect the royalties due under those licenses from the DSPs and pay songwriters, composers, lyricists, and music publishers. The MLC is committed to performing this important responsibility effectively and transparently. The slides below provide an overview of how The MLC process will work.

How it works graphic

Connect to Collect™

All music publishers, administrators, self-administered songwriters, composers, lyricists and Ex-US CMO's will need to become Members of The MLC in order to access their data via The MLC Portal and receive payments from The MLC. This is how you Connect to Collect™.

Play Your Part™

“Play Your Part” is you can ensure data about your musical works is accurate and complete. The MLC has two initiatives to help you do this before the The MLC Portal roll-out – the Data Quality Initiative (DQI) and the Music Data Organization Form. Once The MLC Portal rolls out near the end of this year, you will be able to register new musical works, review and update existing works, and identify new sound recordings that feature your works. These are all ways that you can “Play Your Part.”

Learn how to Play Your Part

DSPs Stream or Sell Your Song

When audio recordings of your works are streamed or downloaded on services that operate under the blanket license from The MLC, the Digital Service Providers (DPSs) are required to send The MLC monthly usage data files and the corresponding royalties (calculated at the statutory rates).

Making the Mix

The MLC will strive to link the musical works data in The MLC’s database with the usage data received from DSPs for audio recordings that were streamed or downloaded on their services and then determine the royalties due for each work.

The Pay Out

Once The MLC determines the royalties due for each work, they will be paid to music publishers, administrators, self-administered songwriters, composers, and lyricists and Ex-US CMOs . Remember, it is critical that you Connect to Collect™ to get paid.

Commitment to Transparency

The MLC is committed to transparency. The MLC will make data on unclaimed works and unmatched uses available to be searched by registered users of The MLC Portal and the public at large. Registered users will also be able to submit claims for unmatched activity that they believe relates to their musical works via The MLC Portal. The MLC will continue to reprocess unmatched activity regularly, using any new data and claims we receive. Our goal is to match as much activity as possible.