The first step in tracking unpaid royalties is to ensure that your musical works are properly registered, including the associated sound recording metadata. You can do this by reviewing and updating your works in The MLC Portal or by engaging in The MLC’s Data Quality Initiative (DQI). This will help us to match and pay royalties attributable to your musicals works as quickly and accurately as possible. From there, your approach to tracking unpaid royalties may vary depending on whether the royalties were earned before or after the effective date of the blanket license on January 1, 2021.
For royalties earned prior to January 1, 2021:
On February 15, 2021, DSPs transferred to The MLC accrued royalties for unmatched uses of musical works that occurred prior to January 1, 2021 (“Historical Unmatched Royalties”), along with the supporting usage data. DSPs will send the remainder of their historical unmatched usage data to The MLC this June. After we review and ingest this data into our internal systems, we will attempt to match it to musical works in our database and pay out royalties. Any usage that remains unmatched will be made available to our Members in The MLC Portal to search, review and claim.
When available, the Portal’s claiming platform will be the primary income tracking tool for publishers to search unmatched sound recording usage and claim royalties attributable to their musical works.
We expect the unmatched usage data will be available to Members in The MLC Portal later this year, and we will continue to update you as we have more information.
Please note that if your musical works (or shares thereof) are subject to an existing voluntary license, any royalties attributable to sound recording usage that is matched to these works by The MLC will be payable to you by the applicable DSP or its third-party administrator.
If you believe royalties earned prior to January 1, 2021 were misdirected to another party, you should contact the DSP (or its third-party service provider) responsible for administering these payments.
For royalties earned on or after January 1, 2021:
Please review your MLC royalty statements carefully to identify sound recording uses for which you did not receive payment.
You will also be able to search and claim royalties for unmatched usage accrued on or after January 1, 2021 using The MLC Portal’s claiming platform when it becomes available. We will continue to update you on the timetable for the launch of the claiming platform.
If you have questions regarding potentially misdirected royalties earned on or after January 1, 2021, please direct your inquiries to The MLC’s Support Team here and ensure your Member Name, Member Number, impacted works and any other relevant details are included.