SOCAN Foundation Executive Director Charlie Wall-Andrews was appointed as Co-Chair of Canadian Music Week for 2022, the 40th annual edition of the event.

“After two years of live music and gatherings being put to a halt, it’s a delight to be part of CMW’s 40th Anniversary,” said Wall-Andrews “It’s my hope to collaborate with the other extraordinary Co-Chairs to support Canadian Music Week in creating diverse and relevant programming that aims to resonate with the community.”

The full list of the 2022 Co-Chairs of Canadian Music Week are (in alphabetical order by first name):

  • Adam Countryman, Agent, Artist Group international
  • Alan Greyeyes, Director, Sakihiwe Festival
  • Charlie Wall-Andrews, Executive Director, SOCAN Foundation
  • Dalton Higgins, Publicist
  • Iain Taylor, President & CEO, Cadence Music Group
  • Jackie Dean, Chief Operating Officer, Music Canada
  • Jake Gold, Manager, The Management Trust
  • Keziah Myers, Executive Director, Advance Music Canada
  • Lisa Logutenkow, Vice President, Canada, The Orchard
  • Margaret McGuffin, Chief Executive Officer, Music Publishers Canada
  • Paolo Palazzo, Work Together Inc.
  • Steve Jordan, former Senior Director, CBC Music

SOCAN congratulates Wall-Andrews and looks forward to her contributions!

SOCAN has achieved an exclusive reproduction rights settlement with CBC that provides royalties to our clients for copies of their music made and used by the organization’s platforms. SOCAN reproduction rights clients have already benefitted from substantial royalties distributed for past uses, and will see additional royalties distributed on an ongoing basis.

The deal follows the 2020 decision by the Copyright Board of Canada for $1.5-million, further confirming the value of the right, and ensuring music creators and publishers are fairly compensated for reproductions of their work as “post-synchronization copies” made on all digital and broadcast platforms.

A “post-synchronization copy” occurs when a broadcaster uploads original video content containing copyright music to a digital content management system to make copies for internal use.

For example, video containing music is first received by a broadcaster as the original file. It is then copied as part of their broadcasting operations, to facilitate viewing on different digital or broadcast platforms, or for use in different regions.  The rightsholders are legally entitled to fair remuneration for any of these copies made by the broadcasters.

SOCAN is currently the only music rights organization in Canada licensing and distributing royalties on post-synchronization copies. The CBC agreement provides incremental value to reproduction rights holders, as SOCAN continues negotiations with other Canadian broadcasters that require the license.

The CBC agreement covers 2012-18, and extends to 2022. It follows a 2020 decision by the Copyright Board of Canada that awarded SOCAN clients $1.5 million, covering 2008-12.

“The new SOCAN post-synchronization copy agreement further illustrates SOCAN’s commitment to seeking out and demanding fair compensation for music creators,” said Martin Lavallée, Senior Legal Counsel and Head of Reproduction Rights at SOCAN. “After successfully advocating for the long-overlooked music use, SOCAN reproduction rights clients will reap the monetary rewards going forward.”

Recognizing the valuable work done between SOCAN and CBC on post-synchronization copy negotiations, CBC confirmed the same agreement would also be applied to CBC-owned ARTV. resolving an ongoing litigation concerning this channel.

Under the terms of the settlement agreements, financial details cannot be disclosed.

Compensation for this type of music use will evolve over time, as SOCAN continues to advocate for fair compensation for the work of its members. SOCAN has proposed a post-synchronization tariff to the Copyright Board of Canada which has not yet been certified. Without a certified tariff, SOCAN works with broadcasters to create licensing agreements that provide both fair value to the user and fair  compensation to the rightsholders.

SOCAN clients are already benefitting from agreements for television post-synchronization copies with Quebec-based broadcasters, and several English-speaking Bell and Corus channels.

Current broadcasting laws and regulations were designed for radio and television. While these rules have been effective, foreign digital platforms have zero obligations to support and promote Canadian creators, even to Canadian audiences. Reforming the Broadcasting Act is a necessary step to strengthening Canadian songwriters and composers’ place within Canada and supporting Canadian music in a digital world.

This article continues to explain SOCAN’s advocacy efforts to reform the Broadcasting Act. The three previous articles in this series can be read here, and here, and here.

In this series, we’ve looked at SOCAN’s aggregated collections and distributions data for performing rights to identify trends and discrepancies between traditional broadcasters and digital broadcasters. Although SOCAN also represents reproduction rights and the rights of visual artists, we’ve focused on performing rights royalties for musical works because this is our largest data set.

SOCAN processes billions of performances every month of every year, and licenses tens of thousands of businesses across Canada, including television, radio, digital broadcasters, as well as live concerts, restaurants, nightclubs, fitness classes, and other businesses. This series provides a glimpse into a specific sector (performing rights) for a specific subset of participants (songwriters and composers).

Because of this focus, this report cannot speak for the entire music industry, nor can it speak to the total income received by a songwriter or composer. However, performing rights royalties are a good proxy to reflect trends in Canada, and based on our data, the developments affecting Canadian songwriters and composers is sobering.

To summarize our findings:

  • Canadian songwriters and composers receive less money from digital broadcasters than from traditional broadcasters.
  • Digital broadcasters will soon be the top source of revenue for Canadian songwriters and composers.
  • If regulations for digital broadcasters increased the use of Canadian musical works, millions of dollars from these digital giants will stay in the Canadian economy.

If distributions are lower to Canadian songwriters and composers from digital broadcasters, then where is that lost money going?

When comparing the territorial distributions from traditional broadcasters as compared to digital broadcasters, we see a marked increase in distributions going to the United States from digital broadcasters.

For traditional broadcasters, around 49 cents of every dollar collected goes to the United States But for digital broadcasters this increases 31% to 64 cents of every dollar collected going to the United States:

Traditional Media Distributions by Territory
















Digital Media Distributions by Territory




















Keeping the current broadcasting regulatory structure means that the benefits from the digital transition flow to creators in the United States, rather than supporting Canadian creators. It’s worth reflecting that one of the main purposes of the Broadcasting Act is to encourage the development of Canadian expression and provide programming that reflects Canada. This policy has been successful for traditional broadcasters, and we urge the government to extend this policy to digital broadcasters, to ensure a thriving Canadian cultural sector in the future.

We hope that this series of articles presents a logical and compelling case, with irrefutable fact-based evidence indicating a serious problem that will only get worse if the Broadcasting Act isn’t brought up to date with the digital era.

Canadian music, our culture and identity as a country, and a significant part of our national, provincial, and local economies depend on it.