ASCAP strives to identify all public performances; however, It is not cost effective for ASCAP to survey all performances in bars, clubs, and other "general licensees" due to the significant number of performances and the relatively small license fees paid by these establishments. Our members can submit an OnStage claim via Member Access to notify ASCAP of each individual performance of their music. The resulting royalty is distributed to the writers and publishers of the songs based upon the license fee paid by the corresponding venue.
This is complemented by ASCAP's survey of all songs performed during the 300 top-grossing tours each year as reported by Pollstar. The remaining monies collected from these licensees are allocated to a general licensing fund and are distributed to ASCAP members on the basis of surveyed radio and television performances.
ASCAP Plus Awards for Writer Members
Through the annual ASCAP Plus Awards, ASCAP compensates writer members for substantial performance activity not included in our surveys and whose works have a unique prestige value. All award determinations are made by distinguished members of the music community who are neither members nor employees of ASCAP.
These panelists exercise their independent judgement to determine which ASCAP members receive awards and in what amounts. ASCAP is the only performing rights organization with an awards program of this kind. These awards encourage many of our active writers in the early stages of their careers as well as writers whose works have a value beyond the scope of performance surveys.
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