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MLC UPDATE: ROYALTIES SPIKE, DATABASE SKYROCKETS, MEMBERSHIP SWELLS
7/26/22

The Association of Independent Music Publishers (AIMP) New York Chapter held a webinar on 7/26, which featured an update from the Mechanical Licensing Collective (The MLC). Co-hosted by New York Chapter board member Melanie Santa Rosa and MLC CEO Kris Ahrend, the virtual presentation included some promising metrics regarding the entity’s growth since its launch under the Music Modernization Act (MMA) in January 2021.

Royalties distributed to music publishers, songwriters and other rightsholders totaled over $564.1m as of this month, while new MLC memberships increased by over 13,000. As for newly registered works, that number came to over 14m, with a nearly 98% process rate.

The MLC Database itself has skyrocketed from 17.4m to 26.8m songs since The MLC’s inception plus works added to date totaled roughly 9.4m.

Ahrend also pointed out The MLC’s website has become much more user-friendly, thanks to the addition of various tools to streamline the process.

The U.S. Copyright Office—with the backing of the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA), Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) and Songwriters of North America (SONA)—designated The MLC to be the licensing and admin entity under the MMA after it was passed in 2018.

Under the MMA, all streams from 21 different DSPs—including Apple Music, Spotify, Pandora, Amazon, Google Play and YouTube—must be reported to The MLC in order for creatives to receive proper payment. (Hey, somebody has to do it.)

As of July 2022, Ahrend announced, the 21 DSPs have transferred over $427m total in previously unmatched royalties to The MLC. (Month-by-month breakdowns can be found on The MLC website.) Toward the end of the presentation, Ahrend hailed his Publisher Services Team, which includes Head of Rights Management Maurice Russell, Publisher Services Manager Sean McNamara and Rights Management Team Lead Baylee Kuss.