The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #87321   Message #1629371
Posted By: George Papavgeris
17-Dec-05 - 07:01 AM
Thread Name: PRS at it again!!
Subject: RE: PRS at it again!!
Anahata, I agree of course with you about the principles on which PRS is (or should be) based. But a slight correction, if I may (I am in prize pendant mode this morning) - and this might also serve as part answer to Stu's frustration in his first paragraph:

I think the criterion that PRS uses to determine if the event constitued public entertainment is not whether the performer is getting paid, but rather whether the audience pays - either through a ticket or through increasing sales for the venue (drinks in the case of a pub, more custom in the case of a hairdresser's etc etc). In other words their thinking pivots around the potential benefit to the venue, and that is why it is venues and not performers that are licenced by PRS.

The only exception to this that I can think of is major public events (like festivals), where it is the event organiser that gets licenced, as he/she is the main "beneficiary" (i.e. collector of monies). This explains the temporary suspension of the venue licence during a festival, that Stu mentioned (otherwise there would be double licencing during the period of the festival).

The wedding example is exempted because it does not constitute public entertainment (the important word being "public" here, i.e. it is by invitation and not open to all), and no financial "beneficiary" exists to be licenced.

I have to say that I can understand this logic as a basis. But extending licencing higgledy-piggledy to other circumstances without thought about these basic principles is what produces travesties like the case of Steve Kowalski's shop. It seems to me that PRS itself, or at least some of its officials, do not understand their own basic principles - or they choose to ignore them when it suits their money-grabbing purposes.