Reprographic Rights (Photocopying)
In many foreign countries, artists and rights holders receive royalties when their works, which already appear in authorized publications such as books and magazines, are photocopied or digitally republished. The royalties are paid by schools, governments, businesses, and copy centers. All VAGA members are entitled to these royalties; individual artists cannot collect this money without society membership as the laws only authorize payments to be made to other copyright collectives. Reprographic rights fees are not currently being collected in the U.S., but this may change in the future.
In some countries, artists and rights holders are entitled to a royalty payment upon the resale of their works of art. American-born artists are not currently entitled to receive this money because the U.S. does not have its own resale royalty law. VAGA and other American organizations recently introduced a bill to Congress that would make resale rights a U.S. law.
If an artist was born outside the U.S. or has residency outside the U.S., it is possible he or she or an estate may be eligible to collect royalties. The laws in foreign countries typically only authorize payments to be made to copyright collectives, who in turn, distribute the money to individual rights holders. If you think you may be eligible, please contact us.
Private Copying Rights
In certain foreign countries, royalties are collected for private copying rights: the right to make home recordings of television programming. The royalties are fees paid by electronics manufacturers for the right to make recording equipment that allows home users to record television programs. Royalties must be collected and distributed by a rights organization. VAGA already receives money from our sister organizations overseas and distributes it to our members.
Public Lending Rights
Public lending rights are rights for public libraries in certain foreign countries to distribute publications which contain copyrighted content. The royalties are fees paid to compensate artists for the potential loss of sales from their works being available in public libraries. This money must be collected and distributed by a rights organization. VAGA already receives the money from our sister organizations overseas and distributes it to our members.
Public Communication Rights
Public communication rights involve any event where several people may have access to the work without prior distribution of copies to each of them. These rights are often collectively managed in foreign countries, and only available in the U.S. via a collecting society like VAGA. The rights included are:
- Motion pictures and other audiovisual works
- Television, satellite and other wireless broadcasts
- Transmission through wire, cable, fiber optics or other similar process
- The retransmission of all the above
- Public exhibition of original works