SOCAN launches APIs to drive music royalties innovation

May 31, 2016

In another leading move, SOCAN has launched an application program interface (API) portal that enables a marketplace of new innovative apps, that will revolutionize how music creators and music publishers work with SOCAN, to get paid when their music is played.

SOCAN is using API technology – the digital glue that links large databases such as SOCAN's with apps, mobile phones, and websites – to push music royalty management innovation out to the marketplace, transforming how music rights are managed in the digital era.

The first two APIs announced today are “Song Registration” and “Concert Notification.” Song/Work Registration enables writers to use new workflow apps and software to register their songs more accurately with their music publishers, labels, digital services and SOCAN.

The Concert Notification API enables songwriters and music publishers to easily register their concerts with SOCAN to get paid faster and more accurately for their live performances.

The API launches with three innovative partners: David Murphy et ©ie, SongSplits and TGiT.

SOCAN's development partner and first user of the Concert Notification API is Montréal-based music publisher David Murphy et ©ie, which is now successfully registering clients' concerts with SOCAN through the API, ensuring faster and accurate payment. SOCAN anticipates that other medium and large music publishers, along with third-party providers, will connect their copyright management systems to the SOCAN database in this manner.

Toronto-based SongSplits is “the world's first cloud-based split sheet,” enabling co-writers to negotiate their percentage contribution, or "splits," and ensure that all of the associated data (title, writers, music publishers, etc.) is accurate and thorough when it’s registered with SOCAN via the Song/Work Registration API.

Montréal-based TGiT ("Tag It") is an open-source, music-tagging software platform that allows music creators to manage the descriptive information, tags and metadata associated with their original compositions and sound recordings, for export to SOCAN through the Song/Work Registration API.

David Murphy et ©ie, SongSplits and TGiT each contributed to the creation of the first API's and will continue to use them to develop future applications for their customers.

By ensuring that music creators can easily agree on and export the data on which the music royalty system depends, these apps and SOCAN's APIs will go a long way to clean up missing, conflicting and inaccurate data that bogs down the current global royalty system, particularly in digital streaming.

"SOCAN is leading the transformation of music rights by using technology to get songwriters and music publishers paid fairly when their music is played, especially in the challenging digital music royalty area," said Michael McCarty, Chief Membership & Business Development Officer at SOCAN. "We are enabling a new segment of what we call the 'RightsTech' industry – developers who are creating new digital tools that will help to modernize a royalty system that was developed for the vinyl era."

Companies that wish to utilize the SOCAN API's can do so at no cost through the SOCAN Developer Portal, where they can register, download software code, and develop and test their apps in a secure sandbox before going live, helping SOCAN members get paid when their music is played.