MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT ISRC NUMBERS

 

Q)  Do I need an ISRC number for each single audio track(s) and each single video?

A)  YES (If you want to get paid for streaming and/or digital sales)

 

Q)  Do I need an ISRC number for a full album or EP?

A)  No

 

Q)  Why do I need an ISRC number for my music video?

A)  Since many music videos (including promotional videos) are now streaming online, on mobile phones and on OTT devices (ie., Roku/Apple TV)  you are entitled to streaming royalties.  If you want to be able to collect those royalties, you must have an ISRC number assigned to your video.

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT ISRC NUMBERS

ASIDE FROM AN ISRC NUMBER, WHEN DO I ALSO NEED A UPC BARCODE?

 

Q)  Do I need a UPC barcode also, for my single audio track(s)?

A) If you plan on your single being included in any of the following scenarios…
-  iTunes (more specific information here)
-  Nielsen SoundScan (which compiles the Billboard Charts)
-  Physical CD sales at retail locations
-  a percentaghe of digital aggregators, streaming sites, and download sites

…then YES, you will ALSO need a UPC Barcode for your singles as well as an ISRC code
 

Q)  Do I need a UPC barcode for an album or EP?

A)  YES. 

 

Q)  Can I buy a UPC barcode from Web ‘n Retail?

A)   No.  We do not issue UPC barcodes.  There are a number of resonable place to purchase them online.

 

WHAT DO I NEED TO SEND YOU TO ORDER ISRC NUMBERS AND HAVE THEM  EMBEDDED INTO MY TRACK MASTERS?

 

Q)  Do you have a form I need to fill out to send you?

A)  Yes, you can download it here

 

Q)  Do I have to pay before you issue and embed my ISRC code(s)?

A)  Yes, payment in full is required.  Once we receive your order form (above) we will send an invoice.  Your work will not be started until payment is received

 

Q)  Why do I have to answer all these questions on my application and include cover art image?

A)  You know when you go on a website and it says “Image not available”.   That’s what iTunes, etc., will say if you don’t include your cover art image.  All the other information (metadata) also converts to digitally

 

Q) Do I need to send you a computer file of the COMPLETED, FINAL VERSION of my track or video?

 A) Yes.  It must be in either of these formats: MP3 (Audio) or MP4 (video) file.

 

Q)  What will differentiate the file I send you, from the version I get back, so I know which one has the ISRC number and metadata from the form I filled out, embedded into it?
A)  We will return the file with the same name but at the end of the file name it will say “ISRC’D”

 

Q)  Once I get the “ISRC’d” File, what do I do with it?

A)  THAT FILE NOW BECOMES YOUR MASTER RECORDING.  You will use this new ISRC’d file for all uses from that point forward.  

 

Q)  What if I don’t have it in MP3 (audio) or MP4 (Video)?
A)  We can convert each file for you for a non-refundable $15 fee.  However we will return the converted file to you for your final approval.  Sometimes the quality diminishes and as the artist you will need to decide – use it, or don’t use it - it’s your call.

 

Q)  How can I see the ISRC number?

A)  You cannot.  Therefore it is best to make sure you are buying your ISRC number from a certified RIAA reseller, such as Web ‘n Retail!
 

 

 

 

Q)  Since I can’t SEE the ISRC code number, how do I know what it is if I need to fill out forms, etc.?
A)  We will send you the written code along with the revised Master file

 

MISCELLANEOUS Q & A’s

 

Q)  How long will it take to get my ISRC code embedded into my track or video file from the time you receive it?

A)  Within 24 hours Monday – Friday.  Within 72 hours if ordered on a Friday.

 

Q)  What if I need an ISRC code for my mastering facility to embed into my track before the track is finished and thus I cannot provide all the info (like BPM or Total Time)? 
A)  We can assign your number, hold it in our system and then when you are finished mastering, you can provide the balance of information.  You won’t be able to register with SoundScan until all that info is completed and embedded.

 

Q)  What if I already sent out individual tracks or videos to places that are streaming or selling it, prior to knowing I needed an ISRC number?

A)  You will need to file a “takedown” notice and replace the taken down track with the new ISRC’d master track.  Many sites that sell music have a link for this.  If they don’t you’ll need to contact their legal or support department.

 

Q)  What if I sell music in a variety of countries, can you still issue me a singular ISRC code to do so?

A)  YES.  “…ISRCs assigned will carry the Country Code [sic] of the ISRC Manager [sic-those assigning the code], not the Independent Artist. This is NOT a concern because, once assigned, the ISRC is a [sic] "just a number" and no inference should be made from the Country Code about the territory where the recording was made or is owned.”

 

Q)  Do I need an ISRC number for a cover song I re-recorded?

A)  YES.  To do so, on our submission form, you will list yourself as the artist and indicate the ORIGINAL title of the track.   (NOTE:  This does not affect nor protect you from the legalities of recording someone else’s material.)

 

Q)  Do remixes or other changes to a track that already has an ISRC assigned to it, need a new ISRC code?

A)  A new ISRC code is required if ANYTHING about the song changes (track length, title, audio mastering, etc.). To be more specific, a new ISRC must be issued when:
- A sound recording is re-mixed or edited.

-  If a new fade changes the length of a track by more than 10 seconds.
-  Edits that change the length of a sound recording by more than 10 seconds (playing time is measured from the first recorded modulation to the last recorded modulation).
-  A previously released sound recording is partially used as part of a compilation.
-  A "full restoration" of a historical recording is performed by re-mastering, re-pitching, re-equalizing, de-noising or de-clicking a sound recording to meet contemporary quality standards. The registrant of the recording has discretion when making the determination between full re-mastering (sound restoration) and simple re-mastering (reproduction without sound restoration).

 

OTHER ORGANIZATIONS YOU MUST ADVISE OF YOUR ASSIGNED ISRC NUMBERS:

Q:  Now that I have new masters with my identifiable ISRC code embedded into the new master – Do I need to do anything else?

A:  Yes.  You need to do do 1 or 2 things, you need to provide to the ISRC number(s) to  1 or 2 of the agencies below, your WRITTEN ISRC codes found on the info sheet that accompanies our “ISRC’d” master tracks/videos we returned to you.

 

#1) PERFORMING RIGHTS SOCIETY  (Applies to all new ISRC registrations)

 

Physical performance royalties are tracked by performing rights societies like ASCAP , BMI, and SESAC . They collect royalties from venues that use music as a means to make money or enhance their ability to make money. This includes Music clubs, Bars, Stadiums etc… A venue that need to play music or a music video as a part of their business must pay for a license to do so. Those royalties are divided up and paid out to registered members.

 

You need to let your Performing Rights Society know (BMI, ASCAP or SESAC) what your ISRC numbers are.    If you are not yet registered with any of the above PRS (aka PRO) agencies, you need to do that to be paid these types of royalties!  BMI is free, not sure about the others.

 

SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS FOR ASCAP:
IF YOU USED A DISTRIBUTOR (Universal, Tunecore, etc.) THAT HAS ALREADY REPORTED AUDIO ISRC NUMBERS FOR YOU. YOU NOW WILL ADD YOUR VIDEO ISRC NUMBER.

-  Go to Ascap’s member portal>Contact Ascap>

-  Topic:  My catalog

-  Word record update

-  Add additional ISRC

 

IF YOU DID NOT USE A DISTRIBUTOR AND ARE SELF-DISTRIBUTED, AND REPORTED YOUR OWN ISRC AUDIO NUMBERS ALREADY.  FOR THE MUSIC VIDEO:

-  Go to Ascap’s member portal>

>  Click on the song

>  Click EDIT

> Add additional ISRC number

(If that is giving you an issue, you can put the info into their “Contact ASCAP” form and they will do it for you or will respond with more detailed instructions)

 

#2)  SOUNDSCAN  (Applies only to Physical Hard Copy or Digital Download Sales)

 

IF YOU USED A DISTRIBUTOR (Universal, Tunecore, etc.) THAT HAS ALREADY REPORTED AUDIO ISRC NUMBERS FOR YOU. YOU NOW WILL ADD YOUR VIDEO ISRC NUMBER.

 

Most of these companies will provide ISRC codes for your AUDIO tracks when you sign up for their services. If they have issued your ISRC for your VIDEO as well, you will be required to enter in the ISRC code when registering your songs. The rest should be taken care of by the distribution service.

IF YOU DID NOT USE A DISTRIBUTOR AND ARE SELF-DISTRIBUTED, Physical sales are generally tracked through an agency like Nielsen's Soundscan.  This scenario is highly unlikely for music videos.   If you register your audio recordings there they will be registered and tracked in their database. You may also want to consider getting a UPC/EAN code before registering your songs with SoundScan.

 

Dear Rock 'n Retail, LLC:  As the National ISRC Agency for the  United States, we are pleased to advise that the ISRC Manager Code has been renewed to Rock 'n Retail, LLC.   Your ID remains QM-4LG

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