Livestreams of events
Apply for a licence
Apply here for the licence for livestreams from events
If you livestream an event on social media or websites, you must comply with the licensing terms and conditions.
The licensing terms and conditions apply to the transmission of individual events such as concerts, DJ sets, religious services, dance or fitness lessons. The terms and conditions also cover the archiving of livestreams. Our customer service will be happy to answer your questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Providers of livestreaming platforms that charge fees should apply to email@example.com for licensing purposes.
Please bear in mind that other rights may be involved.
Other rights: you must also obtain a licence for the following rights:
The synchronisation right is the right to combine music with your own images, i.e. to add music to a film. As a rule, this right is managed by the publisher of the work and SUISA cannot issue the relevant licence. You must apply directly to the music publisher for the right to use the desired work. You can find the publisher’s name on the CD or in our works database under “shareholders” in role "E" ("E" for publishers) .
Rights in pre-existing recordings (neighbouring rights)
If you use pre-existing recordings (e.g. from a CD or an MP3 file) in a livestream, you must obtain the requisite licence. These rights are generally managed by the producer of the recording (sound recording producer, i.e. the record company or label). You must therefore apply to the sound recording producer for a licence for the relevant music pieces. In most cases, IFPI Switzerland (the umbrella association for Swiss producers of sound and sound and video recordings) will be able to assist you.
FAQ: Frequently asked questions
Live streaming is (as a rule) the direct transmission of music or events disseminated live via the internet.
In principle, the remuneration is charged as a percentage of revenues. If there are no revenues, remuneration will be based on the total costs, or a minimum fee will be applied.
For more information and the licensing terms and conditions for livestreams.
As a private individual, you do not need a licence from SUISA to place non-commercial livestreams on YouTube and/or Facebook/Instagram because SUISA has direct agreements with both platforms (YouTube and Facebook/Instagram). In this context, non-commercial means that no money is charged for the livestream and that it is not produced by or for a company. Charity actions whose proceeds go entirely to the needy, as well as religious services and association events qualify as non-commercial provided no money is charged.
On social media: whenever money is charged for the livestream, or if it is streamed by or for a company.
On your own website: as a rule, whenever you use music protected by copyright.
Exception: a performing artist (e.g. a band) which only ever plays its own compositions (“own use”).
In the case of objections, you are often told who the objecting rightholders are. In that case, it is advisable to contact them: that is the best way of finding out why the notice appeared.
YouTube treats archived livestreams in the same way as any other uploaded videos: rightholders can claim the content of the videos, thus enabling advertising. YouTube then shares the advertising revenues with the rightholders. This is perfectly admissible: you can only avoid it by using material that you wrote or produced yourself.
That depends: if you do not play music from a recording (and only stream concerts, for example), you can assume that the stream will not be blocked. However, SUISA is only responsible for copyrights and not for recording rights which are represented by the labels. Therefore, if you play music from recordings, you need to contact the labels to avoid blocking.
SUISA is just about to conclude a contract with Twitch. As in the case of Facebook and YouTube, you do not need a licence from SUISA for any livestreams you make available for free on Twitch. For livestreams that are not free of charge for the user, or which you otherwise monetize, you need a licence in accordance with the livestream licensing terms and conditions (https://www.suisa.ch/de/kunden/online/video/livestreams.html)
In your planning, you should also consider that, in addition to the authors rights, you will need to obtain a licence for performance rights (in other words, the recording rights, also known as master rights). These must be obtained directly from the labels. As a rule, it is not advisable to use any “well-known” music in your game streams on Twitch because unlicensed streams can always be blocked.
That may well be the case for the time being because those platforms have less effective fingerprinting systems than YouTube or Facebook. But that will change soon.
Warning: streaming unlicensed music is not allowed on any of these platforms and may lead to the blocking of your account.
If your club is planning to stream commercially available recordings, you must expect the livestream to be blocked by the labels. However, if the event is streamed free of charge, you may assume that the copyrights are covered by contractual agreements with Facebook.
No, only if you charge money for it. Otherwise, the rights are covered by the agreement between SUISA and YouTube.
If you are planning to stream commercially available recordings, you must expect the livestream to be blocked. For the authors rights, a licence has to be obtained in accordance with the livestream licensing terms and conditions (https://www.suisa.ch/de/kunden/online/video/livestreams.html).
- From your organ/live/concert
a) on social media: the rights are generally regulated by contracts with the platforms. You do not need a licence from SUISA.
b) on your own website: you must obtain a licence from SUISA in accordance with the livestream licensing terms and conditions (https://www.suisa.ch/de/kunden/online/video/livestreams.html).
- From recordings
a) on social media: you should expect the stream to be blocked (see FAQ 6)
b) on your own website: in addition to the authors’ rights, you need licences from the labels.
- From your organ/live/concert
Yes, you must obtain a licence in accordance with the livestream licensing terms and conditions (https://www.suisa.ch/de/kunden/online/video/livestreams.html).
Moreover, DJ sets also contain recordings; the record companies or “labels” hold the recording rights.
As a rule, the labels do not allow DJ sets on social media and will block them.
To livestream on your own website, you will need to license the recording rights directly from the labels beforehand. Without a licence, you will be infringing those rights and may expose yourself to prosecution.
For the time being, to the best of SUISA’s knowledge, Mixcloud is the only platform that has concluded a contract covering DJ livestreaming with most major labels. Therefore, it is advisable to livestream your DJ sets only there.
Yes. As soon as the stream generates revenues, you must pay license fees.