Aslice was already an intriguing idea – what if you could create a system to give music producers a share of the revenue DJs earn with their tracks? A new pilot program, though, promises to connect this with existing systems, as Aslice partners with Canadian performing rights organization SOCAN.
So, for those who don’t follow Canadian SOCANs, it’s that country’s equivalent of ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC (USA), PRS (UK), CISAC (FR/global), GEMA (DE), ACEMLA (Puerto Rico USA-based + international), and so on. These are Performing Rights Organizations (PROs). They have their flaws, but theoretically their role can be to ensure that as a producer (songwriter / composer) you get a share of the revenues other folks earn off your work in performances. (Here’s a half-decent explanation.)
Connecting to a existing PRO is promising as a two-way street. It could potentially offer more success for both Aslice and the more accuracy for the traditional PROs. Frankly, one of the things the PROs are worst at is accurately collecting data from DJs – which is funny, because it’s simultaneously the one performance that has a huge digital data trail.
Here’s what Aslice and founder Zak aka DVS1 are announcing:
It’s not just the first PRO that shares Aslice’s mission publicly; this collaboration is another milestone toward our goal of compensating music producers for their hard work. Under this new pilot program, after Aslice facilitates sharing directly from DJs to producers, we pass these playlists on to SOCAN to identify unmatched music in their system to pay producers their performance royalties. In short: the traditional PRO model.
Collaborating with a PRO of SOCAN’s caliber endorses Aslice’s overall mission for a fairer music ecosystem and supports our willingness to parlay with forward-thinking collections societies. We’re proud that Aslice’s community-centered model of sharing is already working. By utilizing playlist submissions via Aslice, we can be a more accurate source to help improve missing information about songs played in clubs and festivals for artists registered in Canada.
Of course, if it works, maybe we’ll see this rolled out in other places. And I wouldn’t underestimate the Canadian market, either, even if it’s smaller than a certain giant country to its south.
Aslice just did a talk at Berlin’s Tech Open Air which I think is not available online (at least not yet), but here’s what the founders had to say last year at Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE):
Also, it’s interesting to see the breakdowns. If DJs participate, arguably Aslice is fairer than even buying music on Bandcamp. (Though… please buy my music on Bandcamp etc. anyway!)