Access Copyright, the copyright collection society that collects money from universities for people copying written works, has been somewhat controversial. Even putting aside its silly attempt to claim a trademark on the © symbol
, it's also been looking to increase its fees massively
(over 1,000% in some cases). Michael Geist has been digging in on some of the numbers behind Access Copyright (something the non-profit does not make easy, since it appears to obfuscate the money flow), and appears to have worked out that less than 10% of the money it brings in goes to authors
. You can read his methodology at the link, where there are some important caveats, including some money that's being held back until the results of a lawsuit are worked out. However, it does seem quite eye opening to find out that the group brought in $33.7 million last year, and only about $3.1 million of that went to authors directly, while $8.7 million went to administrative expenses. Kinda makes you wonder who Access Copyright is really representing.