Tha Artist Network Blog

What is a Performing Rights Organization?

A Performing Rights Organization (or P.R.O.) helps songwriters and publishers get paid for the usage of their music by collecting one of the most important forms of publishing revenue: performance royalties.

As a songwriter, composer, or lyricist, you’re owed what is called a “performance royalty” any time your music is played on radio stations (terrestrial, satellite, and internet), used on TV shows or commercials, or performed in live venues.

Those performance royalties are paid by radio stations, venues, and TV networks to Performing Rights Organizations like ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, and SOCAN (in Canada) who then distribute the money to their affiliated songwriters and publishers.

For a complete list of copyright collection societies worldwide, click HERE.

Performing Rights Organizations collect:

  • Performance royalties for publishers and songwriters

Performing Rights Organizations do NOT collect:

  • Mechanical royalties
  • Sync fees
  • Digital performance royalties associated with the creation of a master recording (paid by SoundExchange to labels, session players, etc.)

How can you make sure you’re getting paid ALL the publishing royalties you’re owed?

If you’re  affiliated with ASCAP or BMI, they’ll pay you performance royalties, but you’d be leaving your mechanical royalties on the table — since it is not their mandate to collect mechanicals. To collect ALL the money that’s owed to you, sign up with CD Baby Pro!

By: Chris Robley

Got Music or Video?

Music can be submitted by sending an mp3, mpg, avi, mp4, aac file format along with your music image in mp3, mpg, avi, mp4, aac file format to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Videos can be submitted by copying and pasting your video URL in the "Add Remote Media" link area by clicking the "Submit" button below.  If your music or video is accepted, we will notify you by email and submit your music or video to our listings.

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