Phonographic Performance License
Under the Copyright Act, 1957, it is mandatory to take a phonographic performance license for playing pre-recorded music in a public place, irrespective of commercial or non-commercial nature of the establishment or event. Any communication or playing of pre-recorded music in commercial establishments like hotels, bars, cafes, gyms, restaurants, offices, shopping malls, airplanes and taxi or non-commercial places like college campus for concerts, fetes, festivals, etc requires license from the Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL).
PPL grants license to television, radio, telecom companies and organisations for using pre-recorded music. Moreover PPL grants license to establishment for playing background music or in events. An entity or establishment should take a separate license for playing of music in events like concerts, stage, dance-floor, and even for brand promotion activities, shows, etc.
If any entity plays pre-recorded music in a public place without taking PPL license may constitute violation of Copyright Act and is a cognisable and non-bail able offence.
How to obtain a PPL license?
A PPL license for playing background and event music can be obtained by applying in an appropriate format with license fees to the appropriate regional office of PPL. License for mobile, internet, radio and television can be applied at the Mumbai Head Office.
List of PPL offices can be obtained here: http://www.pplindia.org/contactus.aspx
Public Performance License
Another license that is important for establishment where music is communicated through live performance by musicians and singers, for example bars, pubs, events like concerts, shows, etc, and communication of the live performance through broadcasting medium and mechanical means like TV, internet and radio. It is important for the owner of the premises to take the license where such music is played.
The Application form for obtaining the license can be accessed here: http://www.iprs.org/Forms/Live%20Performance%20Form.pdf and http://www.iprs.org/Forms/General%20Licencing%20Form.pdf
The Tariff for Public Performance License can be accessed here: http://www.iprs.org/cms/Tariffs.aspx