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I read an article a while ago and have just found it again and would like to share the fact that the law states the use of DVDs or videos outside the home is deemed to be a public performance and requires a licence, therefore if you are showing the children in the setting with pre-recorded films or educational programmes you are making a performance and you need a licence. Complying with this can be very expensive. In some instances pre-schools and nurseries may be exempt but this should be checked.

We have occasionally shown clips of videos related to topics in the past but we will not be in the future. Do other setting use this resource? Will you now?


I am relating this to a nursery or pre-school not connected to a school (which is whre I work), where it may be different.



Patent Office helpline number 0845 950 0505 email enquireies @patent.gov.uk



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Hi Inge, this was breifly touched on in the thread 'copyright law' (I'd point you at it but...I cant!) Apparently you can show them if you're an educational establishment and they are for education purposes. :D

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Hi all -

I've been talking to the two groups responsible for licensing, and I think I can give a more or less reliable response! :ph34r:

There are two sorts of licenses that need to be considered - the Performing Right Society (PRS) license, and the Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL) license.

The PPL situation with regard to pre-schools and nurseries is fairly simple:

In terms of strict educational and curricular applications (eg, when playing a cd/dvd to children doing Music and Movement or another kind of activity - ie internal to the setting and session) the PPL waive any licensing obligations. (This means no charge - hurrah! :) )

If you are playing any music at an event which is for an external audience - eg if you want to put on a nativity play for the parents to see - a minimal PPL licence fee of £36.10 + VAT applies.

The PRS situation (with regard to nurseries/pre-schools) is slightly less clear because of some confusion about whether their lawyers accept that a proper curriculum is in place. However, anything which can be said to be curricular and covered by Ofsted is exempt from a tariff. As an Ofsted registered organisation, a pre-school following the Foundation Stage curriculum can play music to the children without charge. For example, if you want to play 'Bat Out of Hell' to your children while doing Music and Movement (PD) there is no charge.

If you want to have music playing in the background in a foyer where parents may be in attendance, or to staff in a restroom, then this is subject to a flat payment of £30.14 + VAT per year to the PRS, regardless of how much or whose music you play.

However, this sort of music will then become liable to extra licensing requirements from the PPL people, and you will then become obliged to, for example, send back returns stating whose records you have played and how many times...

In short it seems that if you can avoid the 'public' performance of copyrighted music or video (no parents or external audiences present for either background muzak or performances) then both the PPL and the PRS will exempt you from any licensing obligations.

Hope that's clear-ish... :blink:


Phonographic Performance Ltd (PPL)
Centre for Education & Finance Management Ltd (who administer the PRS license for educational institutions)

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Many thanks for that steve, has put my mind at rest and can continue to use for topics, ( we showed a video of fossils being discovered and dinosaur bones which led to a completely different topic and changed all the planning but it meant the children really were involved in the planning, would have been a pity to lose this resource.)



Why do they make it so complicated.


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Thanks steve for your clarity, just this week there was a write-up in NURSERY WORLD saying we should pay a licence but in PLA "CONTACT" magazine there was a write-up about not to pay and to contact the patent office.


The reason for these two conflicting write-ups is because a company has been sending letters out to nursery's, pre-schools etc stating the law on video's / music and requesting a payment per number of children on the register.


So, if you have had one of these letters, ignore it like I did and revue your use of Video's and/or music and don't part with any money.


It makes me so cross :o when people try to con money out of us hard working under paid professionals for using resources which can benefit our children. They also play on our honesty and integrity.





p.s. Steve your research and journalistic skills have put Nursery World to shame, well done.

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