Brands & Merch Business News Labels & Publishers The Great Escape 2015

Brands increasingly asking for cut of publishing rights on ad sync music

By | Published on Friday 15 May 2015

Better Brand Partnerships

Much of yesterday’s ‘How To Sell Out Gracefully: Better Brand Partnerships’ strand at The Great Escape looked at the positive ways in which music and brands can and are working together. However, the ‘How Sync Deals Work’ panel brought up one worrying trend – that of some brands demanding a cut of the copyrights in music they feature in their advertising.

“Brands are starting to get really savvy about publishing rights”, said Nathalie Du Bois, CEO at 6 Degrees Entertainment. “They’re realising that there are all these royalties that they’re missing out on. And that’s a really scary proposition because they’re starting to say that they want to own the publishing. That’s where the industry is starting to go”.

Highlighting the potential pitfalls of songwriters assigning their rights to parties who may not then exploit them as they would wish them to, Sentric Music’s Simon Pursehouse added: “Getting the right people to work on your behalf is really important, and you need to be careful what you agree to. I know an artist who was offered a deal by a guy who said he could get him a really great sync in the US, but in return he wanted 50% of the rights in perpetuity. The artist naively agreed, thinking it sounded great, but the sync never came off. It was one of the worst deals I’ve ever seen in paper”.

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