The Portuguese Society of Authors, following what it has already announced in previous communications, being aware of the serious crisis that is affecting the creative sector, has been making all efforts to support its members. A clear example are the contacts made with the government, some of which have already resulted in initiatives announced by the Minister of Culture. SPA continues waiting with expectation for more measures on the part of the Minister of Economy, as well as from other sectors of the team led by the Prime Minister. On the other hand, SPA forwarded immediately to the Prime Minister a communication signed by CISAC’s (International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers) President and Vice-Presidents which was sent to governments around the world asking for effective support for the creative sector.
With the creative industry paralysed, authors, artists, and producers are suffering, in fact society in general is suffering, deprived of an important spiritual nourishment. For these reason we should pay tribute to the multiple initiatives of authors and artists who, generously, from their homes or studios are providing content so that the general population can, in this difficult period of social isolation, continue to enjoy art and even interact, at a distance, with their favourite artists.
We underline, that SPA, in addition to the efforts made with the political authorities and other institutions, took itself exceptional measures to support its members, which go beyond the action SPA already practices (from statutory subsidies to emergency subsidies):
Thus, in view of the exceptional situation created by the pandemic, SPA’s Board unanimously decided the following:
- The advance payments provided to intellectual creators (authors) under the terms of the regulation in force, whose limit is set at 25% of the average of the rights charged in the last three years, may exceptionally reach the limit of 50%, following the same procedures.
- The advance payments provided to music publishers under the terms of the current Regulation, whose limit is set at 10% of the total rights charged in the previous year, may exceptionally reach the limit of 20%, following the same procedures.
- The amount allocated to the Emergency Fund was increased by one hundred thousand euros (100 000€), a sum that was taken from the amounts SPA would have invested its own activities, such as SPA’s gala, author’s day or others.
SPA is aware that there are not enough measures given the dimension of the difficulties that authors are going through, however, it will never stop fighting and trying to gather all efforts to relieve the suffering of those, who with their creativity and talent, contribute so much to economic and social development. Without Authors, there is no Culture, this is the lever that can also contribute to stimulate all society that lives moments of agony and uncertainty. Better days will come and its quality and sustainability will depend on our discipline, our strength and our courage and also on the unity of the authors and artists around who truly represents them. SPA has already done a lot for Portuguese authors and it would have done more if this year of adversity had not stopped us.
SPA, after the long struggle for the normalization of our lives, will continue to be a powerful and creative reference in our cultural life, which is also so important for the revitalization of the weakened economic fabric. With reduced GDP and increased unemployment, Culture has to make from strength and creativity a powerful instrument of struggle. The measures announced will give the possible motivation, in this emergency context, for those who currently need it so much.
26 / 03 / 2020