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Publishers' Licensing Services

Publishers' Licensing Services

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Helping you manage, monitor and monetise your content

A not-for-profit organisation set up in 1981, Publishers Licensing Services (PLS) was founded by the publishing industry to serve their interests. PLS:

  • Provides collective rights management services to publishers by overseeing collective licensing for book, journal, magazine and website copying.
  • Offers a comprehensive range of online permissions services to help publishers optimise efficiencies. 

Collective Licensing

Collective licensing offers a simple and cost-effective solution for those who wish to copy from published materials without breaking the law, and for rights holders where direct licensing is inefficient and not cost-effective.

PLS appoints licensing organisations, mainly the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA), to license the rights granted to it by publishers. CLA licenses organisations in the education, public and business sectors, allowing them to copy extracts from a broad range of titles in return for a licence fee. CLA also has reciprocal agreements with equivalent organisations around the world. CLA is able therefore to collect licensing revenue for the use of UK publications abroad. PLS distributes the resulting licensing revenue to publishers according to the usage data collected from users.

For more details about signing up to PLS for collective licensing click here

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Permissions Services 

PLS Permissions is a suite of services designed to help publishers optimise efficiencies in their permissions management processes and reduce the administrative burden. A new feature launched in 2017 is fee payable licensing. The service is particularly useful for editorial staff and authors seeking to clear permissions.  

The suite comprises:

  • PermissionsDirect  - which enables publishers to manage their own permissions requests in one simple online account.
  • PermissionsAssist - a service by which publishers outsource the entire management of their permissions to PLS.
  • PermissionsRequest - a free service that enables anyone seeking to reuse published content to get permission to do so quickly and easily. 

PLS won the ‘Innovator of the Year’ award at the Stationers’ Innovation Excellence Awards in 2017 for its new PLS Permissions services.

Find out more: 

Contact PLS

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PLS services also include Access to Research.

The Access to Research service provides free access to over 15 million academic articles in public libraries across the UK. More than 80% of UK local authorities have signed up.

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