March 2018 distribution: Vital statistics

Did you get paid in our latest distribution? Do you wonder where the money comes from? As usual, we bring you a breakdown of the facts and figures on the type of work for which we paid out.

Last month we paid out a record £23.4 million gross to just over 80,500 writers. While March is always the larger of our two yearly distributions, we’re delighted to announce that this was our biggest ever distribution in our 40-year history.

It was also our first major paperless distribution, which is not only better for the environment, but the colossal savings made on both paper and postage means we can return those savings to members. We’d therefore like to say a huge thank you to all the members who logged in and downloaded their statements from their online accounts.

Top facts about the March 2018 distribution

  1. In our first big paperless distribution, ALCS members helped to save 500,000 sheets of paper and 32 trees!
  2. Compared with March 2017, we paid £540,165 more to an extra 2,440 writers.
  3. Almost 70% of the money was generated from income from the Copyright Licensing Agency, mostly for educational use.
  4. The highest paid book was a guide on hairdressing.
  5. Of the total income paid to members, 25% was generated from retransmission fees for audiovisual writers.

Where are our members?

Our members are not just based in the UK – last month we paid more than 18,000 overseas members. The USA represented the biggest concentration, with 9,062 writers being paid more than £2.25 million.




How much was paid?

  • More than 15,000 members received between £10 and £100.
  • The majority – 58,000 members, which is 72% of payees – received between £100 and £500.
  • Almost 7,000 members received more than £500.





Our top three paid books were a hairdressing guide, an accounting book and a medieval history book. Other books in the top ten were on criminology, flower arranging, social care, orientalism, classical times, and semiotics.





Our top ten TV shows in order of highest paid were Heartbeat, Casualty, Holby City, Silent Witness, Hollyoaks, New Tricks, Eastenders, Timmy Time, Sarah and Duck, and All Creatures Great and Small.


Our top ten radio works were The Archers, Home Front, The Museum of Everything, Maigret, Midnight’s Children, GF Newman’s The Corrupted, Dad’s Army, Meet David Sedaris, Poetry Please, and The Men From The Ministry.

What our members say

On a more personal front we heard directly from many of our members during distribution time (or ‘ALCS day’ as some of our members have named it!). Twitter interactions were off the chart and we were delighted to hear from so many of you. During the flurry of the distribution, 600 new writers signed up because so many of you recommended us. Thank you to everyone who contacted us and tweeted about us.

Reading your Twitter messages is one of our favourite things during distribution, and more specifically, hearing how your secondary royalties are going to be spent. Below are some of the ideas members shared with us on social media.

Our team

If you have been in touch recently with any questions about your account (thank you for your patience – we know the phones were very busy at times), you will have spoken with one of our Membership or Distribution team members, the people on the front line who answer your queries. We thought it would be nice to put faces to those names.