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PICSEL joins the Smart Fund

Artist holding paint brush

The Picture Industry Collecting Society for Effective Licensing (PICSEL) has joined The Smart Fund campaign.

PICSEL joins cultural industry organisations Design and Artists’ Copyright Society (DACS), The Authors' Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS), The British Equity Collecting Society (BECS) and Directors UK in supporting the Smart Fund, which looks to introduce a mechanism to ensure creators and performers are paid fairly when their work is distributed across digital devices.

We very much welcome the support of PICSEL and their membership, which demonstrates wide-reaching support for The Smart Fund from visual artists and rightsholders. By acknowledging the value added by creators to our experience of technology, we can help foster a sustainable ecosystem where artists can thrive and continue to practice and produce artwork that often shapes the content we all enjoy.

Christian Zimmermann
DACS Chief Executive

The invitation to join The Smart Fund is warmly welcomed at a time when co-operation between creator organisations has given the sector a voice that is clearly heard, and strength to stand firm for the rights of creators. The concept behind this particular initiative has been a personal passion of mine for more than a decade, and it’s heartwarming to see it develop as it has so effectively, and with equal passion by others who should be roundly commended.

Paul Seheult


PICSEL launched in December 2015, as an independent not-for-profit collective management organisation (CMO) in the UK providing healthy competition in the marketplace to benefit rightsholders within the Image Sector. We would like to believe that this has contributed to the fivefold increase in rightsholder representation by visual arts CMOs in that time.

PICSEL exclusively represents a significant number of image-based rightsholders, including individuals, by contract. PICSEL members collectively represent over 300m content items available to license. Our objectives are to ensure fair and equitable remuneration reaches our rightsholders, as well as be open and transparent about the management of rights, collection of data and distribution of rights revenue, and for members to be central to the governance and decision-making process of PICSEL.

PICSEL is a member of CLA, ERA, IFFRO, BAPLA, CEPIC, the British Copyright Council and now we are delighted to add The Smart Fund.

About The Smart Fund

The Smart Fund is a proposal that enables technology manufacturers to pay creators and performers for their work when it is shared across devices. Currently, the UK has no mechanism in place to fairly pay creators and performers when their content is shared and copied on devices like smartphones and laptops. Such schemes exist in 45 other countries, where technology manufacturers pay a one-off fee from the sale of each electronic device into a fund to benefit creators and performers.

The Smart Fund would use these funds to directly invest in creators and performers. There is no cost to government or consumers and economic research shows this could generate £260m a year for creators in the UK. This will also enable UK creative workers to continue to benefit from these schemes overseas (something which is under threat post Brexit) by creating a reciprocity between the UK and other countries.

Who is proposing the Smart Fund?

The proposal has been put forward by a coalition of organisations who protect the rights of creators and performers from across the cultural sector. These organisations currently are: ALCS, BECS, DACS, Directors UK and PICSEL.

The Smart Fund is supported by international organisations who represent bodies in other countries that currently have similar schemes. These organisations include EVA – European Visual Artists, and CISAC, the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers.

You can read more about The Smart Fund here.