Frequently Asked Questions - Changes To Your PPCA Licence

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Please find answers below to frequently asked questions regarding the new PPCA Licence for CBAA members. If you need more information, please contact Member Services Officer Danny Chifley or Marketing and Engagement Assistant Holly Friedlander Liddicoat on (02) 9310 2999 or via email: dchifley@cbaa.org.au or hfriedlander@cbaa.org.au.

What is PPCA?

PPCA stands for the Phonographic Performance Company of Australia Limited. PPCA is a national, non government, non-profit collecting society that represents the interest of record companies and Australian recording artists.

PPCA grants blanket licences for the broadcast, communication or public playing of recorded music (e.g., CDs, records and digital downloads) or music videos. PPCA then distributes the licence fees that it collects to the record labels and Australian recording artists that are registered with PPCA.

Information about PPCA can be found on the PPCA website.

I already have an APRA licence– why would I need a licence from PPCA?

There are at least two (2) copyrights in any recording:  

  1. The copyright in the song, being the composition and/or lyrics (i.e. the "musical work" in copyright language).  APRA grants licences for the rights in the musical work and distributes licence fee income to songwriters and their publishers. 
  2. The copyright in the recorded version of the musical work.  PPCA grants licences for the sound recordings and distributes licence fee income to record labels and directly to registered Australian recording artists.  

Further information on copyright for community broadcasters is available here

How much do the PPCA licences cost for CBAA members?

All licence fees are calculated on a per financial year basis (ie 1 July – 30 June).

Broadcast and Music on Hold Licence Fee

The licence fee to broadcast sound recordings on your station and to transmit sound recordings as music on hold on your telephone system is calculated for each financial year as the greater of:

0.4% of Gross Revenue; or $250 (GST exclusive) (Minimum Fee).

Simulcast Licence Fee 

Under the new agreement, CBAA members stations that simulcast will need to pay an additional licence fee of $250 (excl. GST) per financial year.

Please note that the Minimum Fee and the Simulcast Fee increase by CPI each financial year from 1 July 2015 onwards. 

How were the PPCA licence fees and terms set?

  • The licence fees and terms were set after lengthy consultation and discussion between PPCA and CBAA.
  • CBAA members are provided with the benefit of paying lower licence fees than non-CBAA members. Non member stations will pay a higher rate, reflecting the administrative tasks undertaken by the CBAA on your behalf, in order to deliver a more favourable rate for CBAA members.

Can you give me an example of the PPCA licence fee calculations?

A CBAA member station generated $65,000 in revenue in the Financial Year ending 30 June 2015. This radio station also simulcasts the broadcast of the station to listeners online.

Broadcast Licence Fee

The Broadcast Licence Fee is the greater of:

0.4% of $65,000 (GST excl) (0.004 x 65,000) (= $260 excl GST) or $250 excl GST

= $260 or $286 including GST

Simulcast Licence Fee

= $250 (excluding GST) or $275 including GST

TOTAL PPCA LICENCE FEES

= $510 excluding GST,  which is $561 including GST

My station doesn’t simulcast – do I have to pay the PPCA Simulcast Licence Fee?

If your station doesn’t simulcast – then you don’t need to pay the Simulcast Licence fee. If that is the case, when you are returning your signed licence to PPCA – make sure that you tick the “no” box for the question which asks “Does your station require a Simulcast Licence”?

What happens if my station decides to start simulcasting after my station has already signed the new PPCA licence?

  • A Simulcast Notification form is available to PDF icondownload here (PPCA Simulcast Notification Form).pdf. If your station starts simulcasting after it has signed the new PPCA licence, all you have to do is download the form, fill in the details and return the form to the CBAA.
  •  Your station will then be invoiced by CBAA for the Simulcast Fee for the entire year. You can’t pay a pro-rata portion of the Simulcast Licence Fee.
  • You won’t be permitted to start simulcasting until you have notified CBAA and paid the Simulcast Licence Fee.

If I have already notified CBAA that my radio station is simulcasting – do I have to advise CBAA about this each year?

Yes. Each year when you send your financial statements to CBAA, you will also be required to send in a filled out copy of the PDF iconPPCA Simulcast Notification Form.pdf.

What happens if I forget to send the Simulcast Notification Form to CBAA?

If you forget to send the Simulcast Notification Form to CBAA, then PPCA and CBAA will presume that the “status quo” applies to your simulcasting activities for the coming year. For example, if your station submitted a Simulcast Notification Form in 2016, indicating that your station is simulcasting and you forget to submit the Simulcast Notification Form in 2017, then CBAA and PPCA will assume that your station is still simulcasting and you will be invoiced for simulcasting accordingly.

What happens if my radio station stops simulcasting?

  • You will need to contact CBAA and advise that your station has ceased simulcasting as soon as possible. You will not be entitled to a refund of the Simulcast Licence Fee that your station has already paid.
  • You will continue to be invoiced and licensed for the broadcast and music on hold.

What do I need to do if I change any of my station's details?

if your radio station changes any of its details during the licence period (for example, if you change the website from which your radio station simulcasts, if the call sign changes, the radio station has a new ABN or contact details etc), then you will need to let CBAA know within 30 days of the change occurring. CBAA will then share this information with PPCA.

Do I have to get a sound recording licence from PPCA? Are other licences available from anyone else?

PPCA is not the only organisation from which you can obtain the required licences.  If you prefer, you can approach each copyright holder (usually the record company) individually to get a licence for the sound recordings that they control. However, PPCA is the only organisation in Australia that can offer you a 'blanket' licence that covers just about all recordings commercially released in Australia. 

Why deal with PPCA rather than the individual copyright holders?

  • If you use sound recordings as a part of your station’s activities (e.g. broadcast or simulcast), but don’t wish to deal with the PPCA, you'll have to incur the time, expense and difficulty of finding the appropriate rights owners for all of the protected sound recordings you wish to use. Once you identify these owners you must then negotiate individual deals and undertake the necessary administration/accounting activities with respect to each of the rights owners.   
  • PPCA provides an efficient “one-stop-shop” to entities who wish to undertake the communication or broadcast of protected sound recordings covered by the PPCA licence.