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What does playing or performing music ‘in public’ mean?

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Under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, permission is needed from the relevant copyright holders – those who create, record and publish music – in order to play or perform music in public.

Broadly speaking, this includes any presentation of music outside of a domestic setting. For example, it will include using music in the following ways as part of your business or organisation (for the benefit of customers and/or employees): playing recorded music via any device including the radio; showing TV broadcasts or other audio-visual content containing music; or putting on live performances of music.

All these uses of music will usually require permission from the copyright holders and TheMusicLicence will give you that permission, covering the vast majority of commercially-released music.


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