In this particular blog, we will delve deeper into the regulatory process of CMOs in various countries. Since the term “Collective Management Organisation” is a term, that we don’t come across very often, hence the meaning of the term needs to be understood first, which we will eventually study while going through the further analysis of the research paper. The operation and regulatory methods of CMOs might be different in various countries or even within the same country, however, the crux of the matter that holds on to the entire functioning of CMOs, remains the same throughout. Collective Management Organizations are the regulatory bodies without whom the functioning of the entire system of royalty collection would be extremely chaotic and haphazard. In the blog, we will also delve into the underlying interests that are held onto by these CMOs. The objectives of these CMOs and the process that they adapt to run themselves as an organization is also something that will be dealt with in the further analysis of the research paper.


To begin, the CMO must first obtain the authority to licence on behalf of the respective right holders. Once a CMO has obtained the authority to licence on behalf of several different rights holders, it can enter into ‘reciprocal representation agreements with other CMOs in different areas.  These “reciprocal representation agreements” allow the parties to license each other’s pool of rights, known as their repertoire (sometimes called repertory) in the area of the other party. GEMA (the German music CMO) has a similar agreement with its Canadian[1].  equivalent, SOCAN (Society of Composers, Authors, and Music Publishers). As a result, SOCAN and GEMA will be able to licence each other’s repertoire in Canada and Germany, respectively. It is basically an understanding between the respective countries where each of these countries increases the scope of the right holder in each other’s territory, as a consequence of which all these parties mutually benefitted. Once a license has been signed by a user there comes the role of the court or any other specialized body, these institutions intervene in the price-setting process in order to check the transparency and validity of the entire procedure. Once everything is found transparent, the CMOs eventually receive their payments from these users who sign these licenses for exhausting the rights provided by these respective licenses.

While talking about licensing and its uses, it is noteworthy to talk about certain other forms of use that cannot be licensed. If this cannot be understood properly, let us take an example. If someone copies any particular work in a certain way that is not legally permissible, then after the permission of the court and any other administrative authority, the compensation, as fixed by the administrative body, needs to be paid to the collective management Organisation pertinent to that particular territory or zone. So, we can therefore say that the CMO does not only receives the payment from the license users, rather they also receive compensation coming from individuals who violate the rules of copyright law.


Basically among all the components of work that CMO deals with, the CMO needs to deal with the two most important factors that are identification and ownership. The CMO simply cannot function without knowing the aforementioned factors. The first factor is necessary for the CMO in order to understand the types of works, performances etc. that the CMO is dealing with or needs to deal with. The second factor is important for the CMO in order to figure out who is the person who holds the original right to a particular work, the use of which deserves a particular payment on behalf of the CMO to the particular owner of that work. Hence, in order to know whom to pay, the CMO needs to know the owner or the right holder of the work

A user’s usage data may include the performer’s name, song, recording, composer, or any combination of the aforementioned. That identification data may or may not correspond to current ownership data, and the CMO requires both. For reprographic rights, CISAC and the International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organisations (IFRRO) have built worldwide databases of identification data. This enables its members to locate foreign works, performances, and recordings that have been licenced to them through reciprocal representation agreements. Some or all of the ownership data (contact information, etc.) is kept private by each CMO. Users’ or the CMO’s identification data will be utilised to match consumption data to individual works, recordings, or performances.[2]

Usage reporting is often required in licence agreements with users for all or part of the works, performances, or recordings used. Computer logs, for example, could be utilised by a radio station to report on the music played. It is more difficult to ensure 100% reporting from other categories of users (e.g., hotels, pubs, and restaurants). Surveys are sometimes employed. For instance, certain (ideally a representative number) of users may be polled for a set length of time, and the data acquired will then be extrapolated to the class of users in question using statistical regressions and other similar models.


In view of the growing detrimental impact of piracy on copyright stakeholders like musicians and record labels, the function of collective management organizations has become increasingly important. The collective administration of copyright and related rights is a technique of ensuring that the producers of this crucial aspect of modern life receive acknowledgement and fair economic rewards for their work. As previously stated, the widespread use of copyrighted works and related rights makes granting individual licenses and collecting payments practically impossible for right owners. When it comes to tracking the illicit exploitation of their works, composers, lyricists, songwriters, and publishers in countries without collective management associations face a number of obstacles. The creation of collective management societies in such countries would instantly create a framework for regulating the use of copyright works, issuing licenses, collecting license payments, and distributing those fees to its members and linked organizations. Forming new collective management organizations and enhancing existing organizations, whether in cyberspace or not, are two of the most effective approaches to battle the global epidemic of piracy.

[1] Daniel Geravis, Collective management of copyright and related rights, http://www.tripsagreement.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Gervais_9789041127242_Ch-01_Daniel-Gervais.pdf

[2] Daniel Geravis, Collective management of copyright and related rights, http://www.tripsagreement.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Gervais_9789041127242_Ch-01_Daniel-Gervais.pdf

About Shreyasi 2 Articles
I'm Shreyasi, a penultimate year student of law, from KIIT SCHOOL OF LAW, BHUBNESWAR. My interest areas include IP and Commercial laws. I have published several blogs based on the aforementioned areas of law.

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