SOCAN Composers Digital Town Hall Contemporary composers learned how to better navigate the digital landscape, and had many questions answered, as SOCAN partnered with The Canadian League of Composers (CLC) and the Canadian Music Centre (CMC) to present a free online town hall presentation and meeting, “Classical and Art Music in the Digital Landscape,” on Feb. 9, 2022, from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. ET

The town hall focused on notated and contemporary music in the digital landscape, addressing the concerns of Canadian composers pursuing compensation for their music when it’s distributed online. It included useful information about synch licenses, mechanical rights, copyright, streaming, and more, supporting self-advocacy and equitable approaches to presenting music online.

SOCAN’s James Leacock, Director, Domestic Royalty Collections, offered a presentation explaining “Licensing for New Classical Music Composers,” while SOCAN Membership Operations Administrator Karen Richards walked through the registration of a composition in the member portal of the new website.

Leacock explained how SOCAN licenses the music used in digital streaming, online screen productions, user-generated content, videogames, music learning, VR, and the metaverse. He discussed how royalties work for ticketed online concerts, including those on social, media platforms, and why the rate to charge for a synchronization will vary with the budget of the music user, the length of time of the music use, the reach of their platform, and other  variables.

Leacock; Richards; SOCAN Creative Executive Racquel Villagante; and SOCAN’s Gary Laranja, Manager, Member Services, answered many questions throughout and after these presentations. Among them:

  • How SOCAN is working to license NFTs by applying a model we’re familiar with;
  • the difference in licensing fees, for presenters, between on-demand streaming versus a live online concert;
  • the timing limits for submitting a notice of live performance to SOCAN;
  • how to inform SOCAN about the use or reach of a YouTube video, so we can follow up on subsequent royalty distributions;
  • how SOCAN is able to handle synchronization rights on a non-exclusive basis, based on direction from our member;
  • how, If a member embeds a YouTube video on their website, it’s still licensed through YouTube; and
  • how, in a musical theatre production, it’s a good idea to register each song separately.

Also attending and overseeing the event were the Canadian Music Centre’s Matthew Fava, Director, Ontario Region, and Bekah Simms, General Manager of the Canadian League of Composers.

At the close of the event, SOCAN’s Vanessa Thomas, Vice-President, Member and Industry Relations, emphasized that this was only the first of many such gatherings to come, and encouraged our member participants to contact SOCAN with any further questions, via our information centre, at 1-866-307-6226, or at


Cameron Kennedy recently joined SOCAN as Director, Creative, a new role that focuses on driving member recruitment, retention, and repatriation for our reproduction and performing rights businesses. The position will help ensure that we continue to put the needs of our members and clients first.

“As the Creative team is constantly evolving with the changing needs of our members and clients, recruitment, retention, and repatriation are invaluable to ensure that our repertoire stays competitive,” says Vanessa Thomas, Vice President, Member & Industry Relations. “Cameron Kennedy comes to SOCAN at an exciting time, and I look forward to working with him.”

Kennedy is responsible for strengthening SOCAN’s repertoire by developing and implementing creative strategies to ensure our organization continues to be informed, and ahead, of various performing rights members and reproduction rights clients. He’ll work closely with the creative programing team to develop and execute membership events and partnerships. Kennedy will also lead and mentor the Creative team in Toronto, Montréal, Vancouver, and Los Angeles, as we work to develop new relationships, nurture existing ones, and provide information on our core member benefits to both emerging and established music creators.

An experienced and talented industry professional with more than 10 years of expertise in the music and entertainment world, Kennedy was most recently a partner of one twenty eight, a Toronto-based talent booking, cause marketing, and corporate social responsibility agency, developing and implementing strategies with such organizations such as the JUNO Awards, TikTok, and Kids Help Phone.

In honor of Black History Month, we’re creating content on our online platforms and social media throughout February 2022 to highlight historical contributions of Black Canadians in music. Check out our recognition of Black History Month 2022 on our timelines, and history-making Black music year-round at