Nashville, Tennessee (July 05, 2019) – The U.S. Copyright Office today chose the industry-consensus Mechanical Licensing Collective, or MLC, to be the new agency to oversee licensing of digital mechanical royalties for American songwriters.
“Songwriters have looked forward to this incredible advance in music licensing for years,” said Steve Bogard, award-winning songwriter and President of the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI). “The MLC creates a number of historic gains for American songwriters. These gains include, for the first time, our participation in the governance of a mechanical rights agency on both board and committee levels. We are, for the first time, guaranteed an activity-based share of unclaimed funds. And the cost of collecting our royalties is, for the first time, paid for by the streaming companies instead of being deducted from our songwriter earnings.”
“NSAI is very proud of our role in crafting guarantees for songwriter inclusion in the MLC governance, stipulating the payment methodology for unclaimed funds and mandating transparency. These things were all achieved as part of the Music Modernization Act. These landmark accomplishments also included heading up the national selection process for MLC songwriter board and committee members,” Bogard continued.
Now the MLC will set about the business of hiring a staff and preparing to ensure the new collective can efficiently license tens of millions of songs by January 1, 2021. The MLC, while awaiting designation, has been working tirelessly and is well on its way to achieving that goal. The Mechanical Licensing Collective was spearheaded by the National Music Publishers Association, NSAI and the Songwriters of North America (SONA). The MLC was endorsed by nearly the entire American music industry when it submitted its application to the U.S. Copyright Office earlier this year.