Understanding licenses

What’s a license?

A license is an authorization for the use of recorded music or music videos. It sets the terms and conditions of usage in return for a payment.

Why do I need a license?

If you use recorded music or music videos for purposes other than private use you need to get a license. It’s an obligation under the Canadian Copyright Act.

Musical content

The musical content you use includes the musical work (music and lyrics) and the sound recording (the track).

As each has its own communication and reproduction copyrights, four different licenses are generally required to use musical content, two for the musical work and two for the sound recording.

Note that a license allows you to use content, it does not give you access to the musical content as such. It is the responsibility of the user to legally obtain the content.

When using music: different rights

Public performance or communication right
To broadcast recorded music, you must have the authorization to communicate to the public the musical content. Therefore, you need a license from:

  • SOCAN for the musical work
  • RE:SOUND for the sound recording

Reproduction right
You must also have the authorization to reproduce (or copy) the musical content when you are not using the original audio recording medium (LP, CD or cassette). In this case, you need an additional license from:

  • SOCAN (Reproduction) or CMRRA for the musical work
  • Soproq and Connect Music Licensing for the sound recording

The Soproq License

Reproduction License

Soproq has a mandate to grant non-exclusive general licenses for the reproduction of the sound recordings and music video of its members. This eliminates the need to obtain separate authorizations from makers, record labels and other rights owners.

General License

Soproq licenses cover the general use made of its repertoire. They do not cover specific track usage nor synch rights in films, television, video games or others.

Content

Soproq represents most of the music repertoire from independent French-Canadian labels. We also represent many sound recordings and music videos from other labels across Canada, U.S.A. and Europe.

License Categories

Licenses are divided into different categories according to the specific use made of the sound recordings and music videos.

Our licensees

List of our licensees by category

Radio Broadcasting

Commercial radios
Société Radio-Canada
Groupe Stingray inc.

In-flight Entertainment

Spafax Airline Network

Other Services or Customized

Ministère de l’Éducation du Québec

Who we represent

Soproq represents most of the music repertoire from independent French-Canadian labels. We also represent many sound recordings and music videos from other labels across Canada, U.S.A. and Europe

Helpful tips
  • To identify a rights owner: the (P) logo usually identifies the sound recording rights owner at the time of its release.
  • Content use: avoid using compilation albums because several rights owners may be involved. Use the original albums instead.