FAQs

Here are answers to frequently asked questions about Artists’ Royalty Payback, a royalty payment to eligible visual artists who have had images published in books, journals, magazines or shown on TV.

Why are we asking for this information?

Copyright Agency is a not-for-profit organisation that manages licences for copying and sharing of text and images. We collect copyright fees, and distribute those fees to writers, publishers and artists whose works have been used, or are available for use, by people covered by the licensing arrangements. We want to increase the information we have about images that are available for copying and sharing, so that we can share the licence fees more widely.

What will I be asked in the form?

In the form, we will ask you:

  1. Your contact details (email address and phone number).
  2. If you are a beneficiary, the name of the artist.
  3. If your artworks have been included in any of the following publications: books, ebooks, journals, online journals, newspapers, magazines.
  4. If so:
    1. The type/s of publication (e.g. education & reference; children’s fiction; art & architecture).
    2. At least one example (title and, ideally, International Standard Book Number or International Standard Serial Number).
  5. If your artworks have been shown on TV in Australia.
  6. If so:
    1. The name of the program
    2. If the program is part of a series, the name of series and the name of the episode, or the broadcast channel and broadcast date
  7. If you are a member of Copyright Agency and/or Viscopy.
  8. If you are a member of a professional association like the Australian Cartoonists Association, the Australian Institute of Professional Photography, Illustrators Australia or the National Association for the Visual Arts.
  9. To promise that the information you have given us is correct.

Where does the money come from?

The copyright fees come from the education sector, the government sector, corporations and others.  Copyright Agency manages licences for copying and sharing of publications such as books, journals, newspapers and magazines. Another organisation, Screenrights, manages licences for recording and copying of TV programs by the education and government sectors, and re-transmission of free-to-air broadcasts. Copyright Agency helps Screenrights allocate payments for images that appear in TV programs.

Who can receive a payment?

Any image creator whose permission is needed for the copying and sharing of their work can be eligible for a payment. You may be eligible to receive payments for some works but not others. You’re unlikely to be entitled to payment for an image created as part of salaried employment. For images created for clients, you’ll need to check what rights you’ve given the clients and what rights (if any) you’ve retained.

When will I receive a payment from THE Copyright Agency?

Copyright Agency is planning to distribute licence fees for images from a range of licensee types commencing in April 2017. We will make an allocation for all artists who complete the form with verifiable information, provided they have agreed to Copyright Agency membership terms (directly or via an agent), or are members of Viscopy. If you have applied to become a new member, payments are to commence in June. We are planning to make a similar distribution for image creators annually.

How much will I receive?

We make a minimum payment of $25 for all artists who have completed the form with verifiable information and agreed to Copyright Agency’s membership terms (directly or via an agent), or are members of Viscopy.  Artists may receive more than this depending on the types and numbers of work, and types and numbers of publications.

How are payments made?

We make payments by electronic funds transfer to members’ bank accounts. We ask members to provide bank details for this purpose.

Does it cost me anything to receive payments from THE Copyright Agency?

Membership of the Copyright Agency is free. The Copyright Agency is a not-for-profit organisation that covers its operating costs from the licence fees it collects. In recent years that has been about 14% of licence fees, 1.5% of which is for Copyright Agency’s Cultural Fund. If you are a member of Viscopy but not Copyright Agency, there is a deduction for Viscopy as well as for Copyright Agency. View Information on Payments on the Viscopy website.

Where can I find an ISBN or ISSN?

An International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a 10 or 13 digit number that is a unique identifier for a book. If you have a copy of the publication, you can find the ISBN on the back cover (usually next to the barcode) or on the ‘copyright’ page. An International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) is a similar unique identifier for serials such as newspapers, magazines and journals. If you don’t have the publication with you, you can use catalogue services such as National Library of Australia’s Trove website to find the ISBN or ISSN.

Does it matter when the publication containing my work was published?

No, we are interested in images published at any time.

I am both an artist and a beneficiary. How do I complete the form?

Please complete the form twice: once for your own artworks, and once for the artist for whom you are a beneficiary.  Provided we are able to check the information in each completed form, and you are a member of Copyright Agency and/or Viscopy, we will pay at least $25 for your works and at least $25 for the works of the artist for whom you are a beneficiary. If there are other beneficiaries, please decide which one of you will complete the form (we only need the information from one beneficiary).
Please contact us if you need assistance toll-free phone number (landlines only): 1800 066 844 or 02 9394 7600 or email Member Services.

I am a beneficiary for more than one artist. How do I complete the form?

Please complete the form for each artist for whom you are a beneficiary. Provided we are able to check the information in each completed form, and you are a member of Copyright Agency and/or Viscopy, we will pay at least $25 in connection with each completed form. If there are other beneficiaries, please decide which one of you will complete the form (we only need the information from one beneficiary). Please contact us if you need assistance toll-free phone number (landlines only): 1800 066 844 or 02 9394 7600 or email Member Services.

I am unsure if I am a member of Copyright Agency or Viscopy, what do I do?

OK. Please contact us if you need assistance toll-free phone number (landlines only): 1800 066 844 or 02 9394 7600 or email Member Services and our Member Services team will let you know if you are already a member.

How will you use the information I provide?

We will use the information about published images to help us allocate licence fees. We will provide information about images that have appeared in TV programs to Screenrights to help Screenrights allocate licence fees. We will use your contact details to contact you about matters relating to allocation and payment of licence fees, and membership-related matters. We will use the information about your membership of professional organisations to help us understand what type of image creator you are. We may provide your name (but not your contact details) to Screenrights to help Screenrights allocate licence fees to artists, and to professional associations to confirm your membership. View our privacy policy.

How the information will be used?

  • We will use the information about published images to help us allocate licence fees
  • We will use your contact details to contact you about matters relating to allocation and payment of licence fees, and membership-related matters
  • We will provide information about images shown on TV, and your name (but not contact details) to Screenrights to help Screenrights allocate licence fees it collects for educational and government recording of TV programs and re-transmission of free-to-air TV programs
  • We may provide your name (but not your contact details) to professional associations to confirm your membership.

You can view our privacy policy.

How does Copyright Agency store my personal information and is it secured?

Copyright Agency takes reasonable steps to protect your personal information from loss, unauthorised access, modification, disclosure, interference or other misuse. These steps include electronic access restrictions for electronic files that contain personal information, securing paper files containing personal information in locked cabinets and physical access restrictions. View our privacy policy.

Do I need to be a Copyright Agency member if I’m already a Viscopy member?

No, Copyright Agency can make payments to you as a member of Viscopy. But you can choose to be a Copyright Agency member as well. This means that payments will be made directly to you from Copyright Agency, and the deductions will be lower.

How are ROYALTIES from Copyright Agency different to ROYALTIES from Viscopy?

Copyright Agency manages ‘blanket’ licences for the copying and sharing of text and images by the education and government sectors, corporations such as PR agencies and financial institutions, and associations. The licences for education and government cover non-member’ works as well as members’ works, due to special provisions in the copyright legislation. Viscopy licenses the use of its members artworks on a pay-per-use basis (e.g. for inclusion in a publication), and on a multi-image basis (e.g. by public galleries and auction houses). An artist may receive copyright fees from both Viscopy and Copyright Agency. For example, an artist may receive a copyright fee from Viscopy for inclusion of an artwork in a book, and also receive a copyright fee from Copyright Agency for copying from that book in an educational institution.

Do I need to be a Copyright Agency member if my agent is a member?

No, we can make payments to you via your agent, provided your agent is authorised by you to collect payments from us on your behalf.

What happens if I don’t become a member?

We will not make a payment to you unless you agree to Copyright Agency’s membership terms, or your agent has agreed on your behalf, or you are a member of Viscopy.

Do I have to apply to be a member every year?

No. Once you are a member, you remain a member.

If you still have further questions, check general FAQ page. For any queries, please contact us if you need assistance toll-free phone number (landlines only): 1800 066 844 or 02 9394 7600 or email Member Services.

 

Apply to become a Copyright Agency member

 

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Melinda Harper

Artist Profile

Melinda Harper

Visual Arts

Copyright is very important to an artist; it provides an income and acknowledgement. It protects the work and the artist's intentions.

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