What are the challenges to authors’ earnings?
While authors contribute to the richness and diversity of culture around the world, too often we can see that authors' earnings are in decline or in some countries have remained far from sufficient to reward and encourage creation. In many countries earnings are declining despite growth in the creative industries that are driven by the work of authors.
There are a variety of causes for this, varying from country to country but many themes are recurring, these can include:
- Unfair contracts
- Expectations for authors to work unpaid "for exposure"
- Buy-out contracts negating authors royalties
- A lack of remuneration systems such as PLR and ARR
- Copyright exceptions
- Smaller advances paid
The status of authors
Authors face a variety of challenges around the world and our members are at the forefront of tackling them. One of the most important things we can do is help to inform about the issues in authors’ earnings. Please see below a range of authors’ earnings studies from around the world.
If you have any further studies or publications to contribute on this subject, please contact us.
Australian Research Council and Macquarie University research project “The Australian Book Industry: Authors, publishers and readers in a time of change”
- CEATL: Comparative Income of Literary Translators in Europe. 2009
- European Commission: Remuneration of authors and performers for the use of their works and the fixations of their performances. 2015
- European Commission: Remuneration of authors of books and scientific journals, translators, journalists and visual artists for the use of their works. 2016
- FERA&FSE: European survey on the remuneration of audiovisual authors. 2018
- FERA&FSE: European survey on the remuneration of audiovisual authors (summary). 2018
- FSE: European Screenwriters’ Income in 2012.
La Coalicion: Piracy Observatory and Digital Contents Consumption Habits 2015
- Presentation (English)
- Press release (English)
- Infographic (English)
- Presentation (Español)
- Press release (Español)
- Infographic (Español)
- AELC: To Write in Catalan. 2014 (Català)
- CoNCA: Professional Status of Artists and Cultural Workers. 2014 (Català)
- CoNCA: Professional Status of Artists and Cultural Workers. 2014 (Español)
- ALCS: What are words worth now? 2014
- ALCS: What are words worth now? Further findings. 2015
- ALCS: Authors’ Earnings : A survey of UK writers. 2018
- Report of the All Party Parliamentary Group Inquiry on Authors’ Earnings. 2019
- Royal Society of Literature: A Room of My Own, What Writers need to work today. 2019
Audiovisual Authors’ Right to equitable remuneration for the explotation of their works. Commisioned by CISAC written by Prof. Raquel Xalabarder
Cultural Times, a study carried out by EY gives an overview of cultural sectors around the world that may be illustrative to understanding authors’ earnings around the world.