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Digital Repertoire Exchange: IFRRO Principles

IFRRO Principles for the Operation of Digital Repertoire Exchange Mandate (REM) 

Adopted by the voting members of the IFRRO Board 30 April, 2007

IFRRO recommends to its members that they follow these guidelines when an RRO that has a collective licence covering digital rights wishes to add repertoire from other countries. 

Starting Point
1. IFRRO supports individual and, where in the view of rightsholders appropriate, voluntary collective licensing for some digital uses.

2. Where rightsholders in a particular territory are able to opt into digital collective licences the same option should be directly available to rightsholders from other countries. Nothing in this document is intended to affect the freedom of any rightsholder to enter into direct relationships with RROs or any other third party.

3. As an alternative to direct licensing of RROs in a particular country, IFRRO encourages rightsholders to consider a Repertoire Exchange Mandate (REM) engineered through a network of RROs. The REM allows a rightsholder, who does not have the capacity or inclination to manage a large number of collective licensing arrangements, to reach out to foreign territories, where the rightsholder's work may be used in digital formats. The REM is to be non-exclusive, and may apply to any type of voluntary licence, whether transactional or blanket or otherwise. The REM enables voluntary licensing to take place on a broad and inclusive basis.

4. The REM is based on the principle that any RRO who wishes to use an REM is voluntarily mandated by its rightsholders to do so.

5. For practical reasons the REM leaves the rights to be granted unspecified. The rights to be granted, to the extent that they are held, are those required under the voluntary collective licences to be entered into in the country of destination. Whilst the REM is not available in case of mandatory statutory licensing, RROs operating under a statutory licensing system may seek to obtain the required mandates from rightsholders in order to benefit from the REM.

6. In order for rightsholders to retain control over the exploitation of their works, RROs authority under REM is guided by a series of principles set out below. Abiding by these will be part of the conditions for a Repertoire Exchange Mandate envisaged by IFRRO.

These principles are to be carefully scrutinised when an RRO that has created a collective licence involving digital rights (Licensing RRO) is seeking to add repertoire emanating from other countries to its licences from another RRO (Repertoire Holding RRO).

a) RRO undertakes to abide by and complies with the IFRRO Code of Conduct.

b) The collective licence provides terms that allow monitoring and enforcement of the licence terms. The licensing RRO  undertakes to conduct ongoing activity to ensure that the terms are complied with.

c) Licensing RRO undertakes copyright and compliance awareness and education activities.

d) Licensing RRO will grant licences that are specific and circumscribed in a way that neither conflicts with the primary uses and markets for the works in question, nor with the normal exploitation of the works, or the legitimate interests of the rightsholder.

e) The Licensing RRO will ensure that the collective licences that it will enter into are generally supported by the relevant representative group of national rightsholders.

f) Where the collective licences to be entered into primarily rely on repertoire from particular Repertoire Holding RROs, the Licensing RRO will ensure that the collective licence is generally supported by the relevant representative groups of those rightsholders.

g) Licensing RRO will ensure that relevant information enabling the rightsholders/rightsholder groups to assess the licences is available to them.

h) Where the RRO is obliged to act in a particular way because of a particular legal obligation, the RRO will substantiate the obligation to the rightsholder and offer an easy opt-out procedure.

i) The scope, terms and limits of the collective licence in questions must be made clear to Repertoire Holding RROs.

j) The Repertoire Holding RRO will be informed by the licensing RRO of changes in mandates and licensing conditions.

k) Transparency: The RRO will provide information to its mandating rightsholders, whether foreign or local, within reasonable periods of time, on a regular basis and in clear language that is fit to facilitate easy understanding of: 

- The way in which it operates 
- Details on all programmes abroad in which the rightsholder takes part through it 
- The amount collected for the rightsholder concerned under title-specific licences and under non-title specific licences and in the aggregate in each case to all rightsholders 
- The total administration costs deducted from the amount originally collected on behalf of the rightsholder 
- The rightsholder can ask the RRO to produce such supporting documentation as appropriate and in particular title by title reporting

l) Efficiency: the Licensing and the Repertoire Holding RRO ensure:
- Short payment cycles 
- Cost efficient administration 
- Expeditious changes to mandate/pricing when instructed

m) Accountability: the RRO pays out to the rightsholder all such fees it collects on his behalf through such channels as was agreed (directly, via an RRO, via other organisations)

n) The licence must provide for an expedient, effective and simple opt-out mechanism.

o) The REM applies to each category of collective licensing separately, i.e. the collective licensing of digital uses in a new segment requires a separate approval. Changes to existing collective licenses may be made, subject to notification of rightsholders. 

p) Moral rights be respected
- Integrity 
- Attribution 

q) Pricing:
In the absence of a price set by the rightsholder, the Repertoire Holding RRO may set a default price. In the absence of such a default price, the licensing RRO in the country of destination may set, at its own discretion, a default price.