Frequently Asked Questions

Licensr provides a streamlined method of acquiring the ICE Direct licence, one of the music licences required for online music services operating within Europe and MENA.

If your query is not answered here, please contact us.

The Licence

1. Who is this licence for?

If you are operating an online music service, you will need to secure permission to use music in the form of a licence.

The ICE Direct licence is for multi-territory music services (meaning active in at least two of the territories listed below) with annual revenues in these territories of less than €500,000 in total. If your service has projected or actual revenues of more than €500,000 per annum please contact ICE directly.

The ICE Direct licence offers coverage for download services (from mp3 to high definition) and streaming services with varying levels of user interactivity and different commercial models.

2. Who is this licence NOT for?

The ICE Direct licence does not cover single territory music services. If your service is only available in a single territory listed below, please contact the local collection society for a licence.

Application forms for the UK, Belgium, Germany, Ireland and Sweden can be found by following these links:

The ICE Direct licence does not currently cover the following service types –

If you require a licence for any of the service types above, please contact ICE directly.

3. Which countries does the ICE Direct licence cover?

ICE Direct is a multi-territory licence which covers online music services available in the following countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) including Switzerland and the United Kingdom, Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Countries are bucketed into tiers for the purpose of licence fee calculation (see section 6 for more details):

4. Can I get a licence for a territory outside of this territorial scope?

The ICE Direct licence currently only covers use of music in the territories listed above. If you are seeking a licence for territories outside of this, then please contact us.

5. Why can’t I get a licence from the respective local society?

If you are only active in one territory you should still get a licence from the respective local society. If you are operating on a multi-territory basis in Europe, then you will need a multi-territory licence. Licensing multi-territory services directly allows services to report usage for multiple territories to one single entity and improves the flow of royalties to songwriters and publishers when their repertoire is used across multiple territories.

6. How does ICE calculate the licence fee?

Licence fees are calculated using the usage information you provide in the application and precedent royalty rates as a percentage of revenue, and a minima per usage or subscriber. Royalty rates and minima are dependent on the functionality of the service and our minima take account of local economic factors to reflect the value of music in specific markets. Our repertoire share is determined using information from similar services as an analogy. This method avoids costly reporting and processing which helps to minimise costs. A table of the licence fees can be found here.

7. Does the licence cover music video services?

The ICE Direct licence covers all of the rights in the ICE catalogue required for services providing streaming or downloads of official music label provided music videos. If your service includes synchronisation (the initial fixation of musical works with visual images) these rights can also be cleared via the tool.

8. What is the term of the licence?

The ICE Direct licence has a duration until the end of the calendar month, one year from the point of payment. There is functionality within the application to start the licence period from an earlier date, but it will always expire at the end of the calendar month, one year from the point of payment.

9. Why can’t I forward date the licence?

To be able to provide a self-service application, while ensuring that the repertoire picture and T&Cs are correct for your licence period, we don’t allow for forward dating the licence commencement. Licence fees are calculated based on your expected usage and revenue within the licence period, so you aren’t paying for time that you aren’t using.

10. What happens if I buy a licence and don’t launch my service within 12 months?

Please contact ICE Licensing team.

The Repertoire and Rights Included

11. Which rights are included in the licence?

When music is made available to stream or download online, there are a number of rights exploited that need to be cleared by way of a licence.

The ICE licence includes the mechanical and performing rights in the ICE Core repertoire.

The following rights can be included in the licence at an additional cost:

The following rights are not included in the licence:

12. What is the ICE Core repertoire?

The ICE Core repertoire is the repertoire ICE licenses directly on a multi-territory basis, on behalf of multiple rights holders. In general, this includes the repertoire of PRS, GEMA, STIM, IMRO, MCPS, independent publishers that have joined up with PRS’ multi-territory initiative, as well as additional publishers directly affiliated with ICE (Peer, Downtown and Concord).

Please see the licence terms and conditions for a detailed breakdown of the repertoire included in the licence.

In addition and through the reciprocal agreements with collection societies around the world, GEMA, PRS, STIM, IMRO, MCPS and SABAM are able to offer residual blanket repertoire in their home territories (UK, Ireland, Belgium, Germany, Sweden, Malta, Cyprus and Gibraltar) which is also licensed directly via ICE.

13. What other licences might I need?

An ICE Direct licence grants the rights to 1. communicate to the public (“performing rights”, which is distinct from public performance) and 2. mechanically reproduce the underlying musical works (or compositions) of the repertoire ICE represents. There will be additional licensors of these rights in different repertoire which your service will need to secure a licence for. There are also separate rights to use sound recordings that you may need a licence for.

The Application Process

14. What do the different service type functionalities mean?

Full definitions can be found within the terms and conditions of the licence agreement, which are made available (and may be downloaded) as part of the application process, but the following summary may help with completion of the application.

15. What do the different business models mean?

16. What is a Sound Zone?

A Sound Zone is an area within a Customer’s Venue which plays an individual Stream of content (e.g. bar area). A Venue of a Customer may have one or several Sound Zones that must be licensed individually. For example:

17. What is the definition of a Subscriber Month, Sound Zone Subscriber Month, Stream, and Download?

18. What do the various repertoire types mean?

Where services specialise in offering only Dance, or Classical music, please select these options. If the service offers a combination of these or any other repertoire types, please select Mixed or Other Not Listed.

We ask you to let us know which kind of music your service offers as this determines the typical repertoire share that ICE represents and therefore the applicable licence fee (see section 6 above).

19. Can I get a refund if my service has under-recouped within Usage Caps or Revenue Caps?

ICE Direct licence fees are non-refundable but recoupable against the caps set out in your licence document. Therefore, when applying for ICE Direct licence, please ensure you make reasonable and sensible projections as they are one of the main factors taken into consideration when calculating the fees. If your service performed better than expected, top-up fees will be issued to cover excess revenue or usage.

20. Can I make preview clips available on my download store?

Preview clips of up to 30 seconds can be made available as part of a download store.

21. How do I report the usage information once I am licensed?

Please provide usage information for all retrospective periods and at the end of each licence term in the specification set out in your Welcome Pack (a simple excel spreadsheet).

22. Do I need to tell you which music is played/artist etc?

To avoid the administrative burden of providing track-by-track usage information, and reduce costs, we do not currently require this information. Licences are calculated based upon our repertoire share on similar services and royalties will be distributed to songwriters and publishers by analogy to a similar service.

23. What about usage outside of these territories?

ICE Direct is only currently available in the territories stated above. For usage in territories beyond this scope, please contact ICE or the local collection society.

24. My service is no longer active, what now?

The ICE Direct licence covers retrospective usage and a forward-facing term of 1 year. If the service is no longer active the licence will simply run out at the end of term and won’t be renewed.

25. How do I renew a licence?

Please complete a new licence application.

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