The term “Neighboring rights” is the English translation of the French words “Droits voisins”, and it’s considered ‘near’ to the Musical Work copyright.
These kind of rights are normally called ‘related rights’ or ‘secondary rights’, the primary or ‘main’ rights being the Authors’ rights and copyright. These rights relate to the sound recording of a musical work (the particular, singular and unique performance of a musical work, when performed by an artist and recorded on a media).
Nonetheless, this doesn’t mean that these rights are lower in amount or “quality”, simply they came after the Author’s Rights were already in place and are treated in a similar manner. To give you an idea of the economical importance of these kind of rights from an artist perspective, there are cases in which neighboring rights royalties overrides the amount an artist receives from record label’s royalties.
Whenever there is a commercial exploitation of a recording (e.g. radio and/or TV airplay, background music in a commercial activity), the licensee has to pay two types of licenses:
– Authors (composers & lyricist) & Publishers’ society fee
– Performers & Master owner’s collection society fee
Basically, if your recordings are played in TV or Radio, you are eligible for these rights.
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