Natalja Chestopalova and Rudolf Olah have won the $3,000 first prize at the 2022 Cue-Sheet-Palooza event, held at a marathon 24-hour in-person session on April 9-10, 2022, in Toronto. The duo developed a CueConnect prototype that will help streamline the cue sheet process by which SOCAN members receive their royalties for on-screen music.

Cue sheets are lengthy documents that identify all of the music and its stakeholders in a particular screen production, in order to accurately distribute royalties; the process of using them has proven tedious and outdated. The Cue-Sheet-Palooza Hackathon, hosted by The Screen Composers Guild of Canada (SCGC) and SOCAN, offered an opportunity for teams of developers to explore ways music creators and stakeholders can get paid their screen-based performance rights royalties faster and more precisely.  Our goal was to free up a music creator’s time to make music, not spend hours on administrative work in order to get paid.

Chestopalova, a Senior Researcher and Project Manager at OCAD University, and Olah, a Senior Software Developer and Tech Lead, developed the CueConnect prototype, which uses API  (application program interfaces) and SOCAN cue sheet submission API to improve critical functions related to data accuracy and process automation, addressing process redundancies, unnecessary repetition and manual re-entry of data, lack of transparency, and more. Essentially, they developed a user-friendly starting point for simplifying existing cue sheet processes.

Their suggestions for further developments include improving the machine learning capabilities of CueConnect; improving data/knowledge networks by making cue sheet data available through public APIs; adding timely notifications for users and stakeholders when cue sheets are submitted; and exploring blockchain compatibility, in terms of novel approaches to payment streamlining.

The winner of the $2,000 Second Prize was Cue Underflow, a.k.a.Gideon Moyo, while the Third Prize of $1,000 went to the Awesome Team, comprised of Dillan Hoyos and Leandro.

Partnering with the SCGC and SOCAN on the hackathon were the Canada Council for the Arts, the SOCAN Foundation, Music Publishers Canada (MPC), the City of Toronto, and