Can I provide my music under a Creative Commons licence?

Creative Commons is a copyright licensing platform that encourages owners of copyright in all forms, including music, to make their work available for free for non-commercial purposes.

When your music is played in public, this is a right owned by us and can only be licensed by us. However, if you wish to make your music available through Creative Commons, you can do so by applying for authorisation to grant licences for the non-commercial use of your music. This information is set out in  Article 7(h) of our Articles of Association. 

If you do choose to apply a Creative Commons licence to your music, you are giving permission for it to be used for free for the full duration of its copyright. Before you do so, please read the following:

  • You can only apply for authorisation to grant licences under Article 7(h) if your music will only be used for non-commercial purposes as defined in our  non-commercial use policyIf your purpose is a commercial one, we can’t grant authorisation under the policy, although in certain circumstances we may be willing to consider applications for commercial-use purposes.
  • Some Creative Commons licences allow your music to be copied and adapted. If you are not the publisher of your own music and/or do not own the reproduction rights for it, you need to check with the publisher or owner whether they are happy for your music to be made available to the public and/or for copies to be made through the Creative Commons platform.
  • We can’t give you professional or legal advice on Creative Commons or the terms of its licences. You should seek advice either from your lawyer and/or a professional trade association on the legal and commercial impact of making your music available through Creative Commons.

If you want to provide your music under a Creative Commons licence, you’ll need to complete an Article 7(h) application form and provide the following details: 

  • You will need to put in writing that you would like us to grant a licence for the use of your music in a non-commercial capacity
  • Tell us about the context of the music usage which makes it non-commercial

Once you have done this, please send to us at writerquery@prsformusic.com and our Member Services team will be in touch. 

Please visit the Creative Commons website for more information.