Unless you are close to copyright legal matters in Australia, you may have missed the stoush going on between Copyright Agency and media monitoring companies, iSentia, Meltwater and Streem.
On one hand, The Copyright Agency is seeking to apply a new pricing regime it believes is more reflective of the digital useage of copyright material, and will ensure journalists and its publisher members receive a fairer amount for their work. You can read a summary of their position here.
On the other hand, iSentia and the other media monitoring firms have repudiated this change in pricing model, not believing it to be fair or evenly applied. You can read the latest statement from iSentia on this matter here.
So what does this mean for PR firms in practical terms? Right now, not much. There have been interim orders put in place which essentially put a stay on the application of the new pricing regime by The Copyright Agency until a final determination is made by the Copyright Tribunal of Australia. That means prices either stay the same for now, or may have even reduced a little depending on what content you consume or use from your media monitoring agency of choice.
Once the determination is made, there may be a positive or negative impact on media monitoring costs and, given the size of these charges for some PR firms, it will be just be worth noting as part of your business operation reviews.
At this stage, that determination appears set to be made in 2020 at some point.
If you're not up to speed on your obligations (and opportunities to reduce costs) in relation to copyright here are some quick tips. More information can be found here.
Please note: this is not legal advice, just general information. Contact The Copyright Agency directly to understand your rights and responsibilities in relation to the management of copyright material. Adam Benson, deputy chair of the RCG is also happy to provide general advice.