No sync license. Exclusive and in perp, only PRO. Would you sign it?

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    Hi Everyone:
    I just receive an offer to sign one of my songs with a library that only gives you PRO royalties, and ask for exclusivity and in perpetuity. No money upfront. I never saw something like this.
    Is this a new tendency that composers needs to accept?
    Advice please.

    Thank you.


    Hi there Walden, I think the biggest question is:
    Is the Library/Catalog big enough, or famous enough to propel your career by signing music to them?

    Sometimes, we have to let go of a few things to accomplish a “Bigger Picture”. Songs/Music come all the time, so it’s not necessarily a loss if “It is a strategic move towards a much more lucrative music career”.

    See what they are doing, marketshare, who writes/composes for them, and see if it is a move in the right direction for your career.


    Thank you BEATSLINGER for your helpful comments.
    For what I see is a small company, led by a well-known musician, look for information from them, but I did not find much. They tell me they are supplying music to important TV channels. It’s all the information I have.


    hi walden, so basically the deal is you’re signing off a track to a boutique lib forever without a chance to sell it elsewhere for no money down with the hopes they would push it to make some backend monies…..tough one, i guess it depends on the song…is it a one off masterpiece or can you conjure up a similar one in a few hours??


    Walden, Do not take that deal under any circumstances. It is horrible on principle alone. I really do not care if you can write a “similar” one in 30 minutes. One just never knows.
    Collecting sync fees should be 50% to writer and 50% to publisher. Why would you sign a track over to someone to only collect PRO back end royalties? What if they were to collect several 4 to 5 figure sync fees over the next several years?

    You really never know what can happen and you certainly do not want to risk missing out.

    I would counter in 2 ways: Tell them you’ll accept the deal if they share the sync fees
    or if they refuse that, then they should buy your track for an agreed price. This is also known as an “advance” or “consideration fee”. If they really want the track it’s because they probably feel like they can and will generate some sync fees from it. Ask who they deal with? Only TV production Companies? Or are they actively selling to Big ad agencies. If they sell to ad agencies there can be really nice sync fees involved.

    By just signing this deal you are devaluing yourself and the entire industry by setting a weak precedent. Never be afraid to walk away from deals. I personally would never ever sign a deal like this. It is clearly predatory.


    This is about the worst deal I could imagine. I’ve been offered it as well and would never sign it.

    If your track is on a corporate video – you get zero.
    If your track gets a big license fee to go on a Netflix show, you get very little from backend and no share of the license.
    And this is exclusive, forever, with no up front! It’s totally unfair (IMO).


    I agree with you guys, I think signing an agreement like that devalues us all. Probably the track is not a masterpiece, but it is a professional track. What struck me is that the owner of the library told me that all the composers were signing with him with those conditions. I do not understand why they do not want to share the synchronization licenses? What logic is behind this? It does not seem fair to me. That’s why I put this post here, to know if there is someone who has had a positive experience with this type of contract.
    BEATSLINGER,boinkeee2000, Tbone, I appreciate your comments very much,I will follow the advice of Music 1234, and if things continue the same, I will reject the offer.


    My very first sync was exactly like this. I didn’t know any better and I felt validated. The library took 5 compositions. Over the last 4 years my tunes have been included in deals this library made with other distributors. They can also do that an infinite number of times, license to 3rd parties. Clearly they’re making money off of including my tracks in these sub-deals. I’ve received $7.94 in royalties from a placement on a Spanish language tabloid-like news show.
    I’ve thanked the boutique library owner, but made it clear there will be no more from me.
    Now I work with sync agencies and I make my own connections with music supervisors.
    Don’t take the deal.

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