Where does my money end up?

At BumaStemra, you pay a fair price for music use in your business. As an entrepreneur or company, you know that music is as important to your work success and enjoyment as a good cup of coffee. Whether you want to create a great atmosphere in your pub or motivate your employees with good tunes – music is a proven contributor to your business success.

And behind that music are the music creators. They work hard to create music and they deserve to be paid fairly when it is used. Licence all your music use in one go with BumaStemra and enjoy playing music without any worries.

How does a music licence work?

To use music for commercial purposes, you need to obtain a license. Different sectors and applications require specific licenses. We ensure fair compensation for music creators whenever their work is played. Our organization operates on a non-profit basis. Your payments directly support fair remuneration for these creators.

Licence agreements

BumaStemra enters into licence agreements with music users. Music users pay a fee for the use of all the music licenced by BumaStemra. This means music users do not have to make individual agreements with each music creator.

How do music creators get paid?

We distribute the revenue from licenses directly to all members affiliated with BumaStemra. Members associated with other copyright organizations abroad receive their payments through these foreign copyright organizations, known as sister organizations of BumaStemra. BumaStemra handles the administration of these arrangements internally with all sister organizations abroad.

How does BumaStemra keep track of who is entitled to payment?

We always distribute payments based on two things: the applicable distribution rules and the complete and correct usage information.
Distribution rules are the agreements BumaStemra has with its members on the use and remuneration of their music. For music creators affiliated to another collection society, the payment will be based on their own distribution rules.

We use several sources to track who uses music. We look at:

  • Setlists from live performances listing music played
  • Cue sheets with information on music used in films or TV series
  • Music use on radio and television and sometimes at live dance events. We do this using fingerprinting technology to recognise music.

We match all this information to our database. To give you an idea, we listen to over a trillion songs online per year. On top of that comes all the other music use. It's not an easy task.

We are here for Dutch and international music creators

We often have direct agreements with Dutch music creators. International music creators are usually represented by their local collection society. Almost every country has one or more music rights organisations that musicians belong to.

BumaStemra has reciprocal agreements with these sister organisations. BumaStemra handles payments for music creators affiliated to a sister organisation in the Netherlands. Similarly, the sister organisation handles payments for Dutch artists in their territory.

Uncertainty regarding who to pay

If we don’t know who to distribute the money to, the money is set aside and kept until we can identify who it belongs to. Money paid for unknown music use is not distributed to other artists or used by BumaStemra.

We collectively ensure that the money you pay for your music licence reaches the right creators as accurately and fairly as possible. This way, music contributes to your success and to the success of the music creators.

The music creator is unknown

Sometimes BumaStemra may collect money for music use, but information about who owns the music is missing. This may be because the author is not registered with us, or it’s not clear who wrote the music.

We check the international copyright database CIS-Net to find out the copyright information of the work and which music creator is entitled to payment.

Sometimes one of the song’s music creators is unknown. In that case, we send the money to the collection society of the creator whose details we do have.

If several rightsholders are unknown, the money will remain reserved until the missing information is identified. BumaStemra then distributes the money to the relevant creators.

Money always goes to music creators

We usually receive all the information to distribute the money paid by music users directly to the correct music creators. But sometimes details are missing. If this is the case, we do all we can to get information, so that the money paid by music users can be distributed to music creators.

Good for music creators. Good for your business success.

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