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Broadcasters

Whether you broadcast a TV or cable TV show that includes music in some of the programming, or operate a terrestrial, satellite or online radio station that broadcasts music, getting Licensed To Play by SOCAN means that the people who created that music are compensated for your use of their work. You’re also making sure that the music used to build your viewership or listenership is used fairly, legally and ethically. The license fees that broadcasters pay to SOCAN for the public performance of music – whether via cue sheets for individual music performances or blanket licenses for all music performances within a given time period – compensate songwriters, composers and music publishers that make up SOCAN.

Question

I already paid for the music (i.e., purchased a CD or download), so why do I need a SOCAN license?

A.

When you buy a CD, or download music from a legal site, you gain the right to play music in private, but not in public. A SOCAN license allows you to perform that music in public.

Shawn Mendes
Member

Shawn Mendes

SOCAN member Shawn Mendes’ first hit single “Stitches” reached the Top 10 in the U.S. and Canada, and No. 1 in the U.K. His albums Handwritten and Illuminate both debuted atop the U.S. Billboard 200. In only a few years, the 20-year-old pop star has already opened a tour for Taylor Swift and headlined at Madison Square Gardens. He earned a SOCAN Breakout Award in 2015 and Pop/Rock Award in 2016, and the Allan Slaight Honour from Canada's Walk of Fame. After 10 JUNO Award nominations, in 2017 Mendes finally won the Fan Choice Award. A few days later, he joined his hero John Mayer onstage.