The long-simmering controversies around Spanish collecting society SGAE are coming to a head, with news that the government there is seeking a partial takeover of the organisation.
Billboard reported that the Spanish government has also blocked the distribution of more than €2.5m ($2.8m) of advance-royalties by the society, while requiring SGAE to ensure its advance payments are ‘verified’. This is being described by the Ministry of Culture as “a measure of control over what type of advances are going to be granted, under what conditions, to whom they are granted and if it will affect the overall allocation of rights”.
Meanwhile, the sanctions procedure launched against SGAE by global collecting-societies body CISAC late last year continues. Much of this situation stems from ‘The Wheel’ – a procedure that saw Spanish TV stations playing songs – owned by their own music-publishing subsidiaries – through the night, with a resulting impact on royalty payouts.