Transforming Chile's new remuneration right into royalties for audiovisual creators
In 2016, Chilean society ATN was part of a historic legislative success, securing an unwaivable right to remuneration for audiovisual creators. Following that victory, ATN has played the leading role in ensuring this right is enforced in practice and paying royalties to its members.
As a result of the society’s work, ATN reported collections for the first time in 2021, totalling EUR670k for its member audiovisual creators.
Chile’s famous Ricardo Larraín Law (No. 20.959) was signed into law in 2016, establishing a non-transferable and inalienable right to remuneration for audiovisual directors and screenwriters.
Securing the law was one thing, but enforcing it was another, and ATN had to take a series of actions to ensure the new right is respected and complied with.
The first step was to develop a modern and objective tariff system. This was commissioned to the University of Chile’s Faculty of Economics and Business. Using the parameters of intensity of use and breadth of repertoire, the tariff system enables fair and adequate rates for users required to pay.
Based on these tariffs, an intense negotiation took place between ATN and user organisations, also taking into account the spirit of Chilean intellectual property legislation, which encourages compromise between the two sides. Eventually on 11 October 2019 a tariff agreement with the pay TV guild (Acceso TV) was reached that effectively translated the Ricardo Larraín Law into commercial reality.
This agreement was not the end of the story, however. ATN then faced several legal challenges from free-to-air TV operators, promoted by employee unions. These were overcome with resounding success, and favourable resolutions were obtained both in the Tribunal de Defensa de la Libre Competencia—endorsed by the Supreme Court of Justice—and before the Constitutional Court.
These judicial successes reinforce the legitimacy of the tariff system in the face of continuing resistance from the main free-to-air TV channels in Chile. The system is now the basis for other civil lawsuits initiated by ATN against those channels.
"It is extremely satisfying that ATN has played such a key role in enabling audiovisual authors to share in the success of their works through its collective management. This is what motivates ATN in building respect for this new right for which we fought for so many years." Cesar Cuadra, Director General of ATN.