Pilot Programme for the Promotion of Local Publications and Reading Culture

HKRRLSFAQ

FAQ

How to join the Pilot Programme?

After registering on the HKRRLS platform, you will receive an agreement of the Pilot Program. By signing the agreement, local publishers / authors agreed to provide and authorize the provision of bibliographic information on their published books such as cover images, additional information, and promotional / multimedia promotional materials for use by the LCSD and the public.

Do I need to pay application fee to participate in the Pilot Programme?

The Pilot Program is completely free and participants are not required to pay any fees.

Which books are eligible for the Pilot Programme?

Any books that are published by Hong Kong local publishers, and have been included in the collections of the Hong Kong Public Library (https://webcat.hkpl.gov.hk/search/query?locale=en&theme=WEB) are eligible for the Pilot Programme.

Is this Pilot Programme only eligible for members of the HKRRLS?

Any local publishers can participate in this programme without being a member of the HKRRLS. In order to participate in this Pilot Programme, the publishers will have to sign an agreement with the HKRRLS to provide and authorize the provision of bibliographic information on their published books such as cover images, additional information, and promotional / multimedia promotional materials for use by the LCSD and the public.

Eligible books: Any books that are published by Hong Kong local publishers, and have been included in the collections of the Hong Kong Public Library.

How is the distribution amount calculated?

The programme fees are allocated according to the annual loan tier record provided by the Hong Kong Public Library and will follow a simple 2-Category scheme:

Category A: for more popular titles with annual loan tier record ranked 1st to 20,000th.

Category B: for less popular titles with annual loan tier record ranked 20,001st and after.

The library has over 110,000 book titles, some publishers might no longer in operations, or the publishing contract between the publisher and the author has ended. How can I confirm whether the publisher or the author will still receive the distribution amount?

(1) As long as the book is available at the Hong Kong Public Library, the publisher and author of the book will automatically be eligible for the Pilot Programme.

(2) If the publisher is no longer in operations, all rights will belong to the author. Authors or their copyright holders have the right to join the pilot programme directly.

(3) Please note that the programme fee does not equal to royalty charges, if the contract between the publisher and the author has ended, the publisher must fulfill its distribution obligations and continue to distribute the amount to the author each year.

(4) The amount distributed by the publisher to the author shall be issued within 6 months upon the receipt of programme fee from HKRRLS and a copy of records such as cheques / bank transfers must be kept and filed as proof of payment.

(5) The primary registrant should be the publisher. But if the publisher is no longer in operations, the author may apply to the Pilot Programme directly. The distribution is based on the information listed on the copyright page of the book title.

(6) If the publisher has no interest or refuses to join the Pilot Program, the author may apply to the Pilot Programme directly

Regarding the distribution of the Programme fee to the authors, how to handle it for the following scenarios :
1. Titles with multiple authors
2. Titles without author(s) but with editor(s) only
3. Titles with Institutional/Publisher as the authors / editors
4. Titles with author and illustrators/artists
5. Titles are classic works with open copyright such as the Four Classic Novels of Chinese Literature Andersen’s Fairy Tales
6. Titles with author who is passed away;
7. Titles are translated works which are originally published in places other than HK.
Do the (a) authors and (b) translators receive the Programme fee?

The split ratio of Programme fee for Publisher/Author shall be fixed at 50:50 irrespective of the split ratio of royalty as stipulated in the agreement between the Local Publishers and Local Authors. Local authors refers to the main contributor to the bibliography. For example, if the role of editor / translator / illustrator / artist replaced that of authors, then editor / translator / illustrator / artist will receive the fee according to the split ratio of programme fee for Publisher/Author at 50:50.

If the author’s information is missing, the part allocated to the author will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and the publisher will still receive 50% of the allocated part.

If the author or other contributors such as editors/translators/illustrators/artists are not local authors, and the local publisher has already paid relevant royalties when publishing the book, LCSD and the public can use the bibliographic materials without obtaining the authorization of the authors or other contributors. Also, since the contract between the publisher and the author or other contributors does not specify that the publisher must pay the author or other contributors other income including the amount of the pilot program, local publishers should not distribute the programme fee to non-local authors or other contributors. The part allocated to authors will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and publishers will still receive 50% of the allocated part.

i-iii. Depending on the publishing contract, if the role of editor / translator / illustrator / artist is equivalent to authorship. If eligible, the amount will be allocated according to the split ratio of programme fee for Publisher/Author at 50:50.

Otherwise, the part distributed to the author will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and the publisher will still get 50% of the distribution.

Public copyright books such as Four Classic Novels of Chinese Literature / Andersen’s Fairy Tale, the part distributed to the author will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and the publisher will still get 50% of the distribution.

If the author passed away for over 50 years (such as the authors of the Four Classic Novels of Chinese Literature), the part distributed to the author will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and the publisher will still get 50% of the distribution.

If there are more than one person as authors, the amount will be divided equally by quantity.

In case of the authors being an institution or publisher itself, the part distributed to the author will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and the publisher will still get 50% of the distribution.

How to handle the distribution if the publisher is no longer in operations?

The publisher is no longer in operations, the part distributed to the publisher will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and the author will still get 50% of the distribution. The author or its copyright holder has the right to claim the amount directly from the HKRRLS.

How to handle the distribution if the author has passed away?

If the author passed away, the relevant amount should be paid to his / her heir who inherit property. For those who passed away for more than 50 years, the part distributed to the author will be temporarily kept with HKRRLS, and the publisher will still get 50% of the distribution.

What if the publisher fails to distribute the allocated amount to the author? Other allocation issues, such as unable to contact the author?

Publishers must do their best to contact the author or his heirs in order to distribute the amount. If the publisher fails to distribute the amount to the author, the publisher must return the money to the HKRRLS within a designated time.

How to ensure the transparency and fairness of the Pilot Programme?

The Pilot Programme was implemented after an extensive industry consultation, and the content of the project was highly transparent. The HKPLRA has also established a Distributing Committee to regularly review the level of distribute on and distribution methods to ensure the fairness of the programme. The HKPLRA should also provide the LCSD with an annual audit report issued by a certified auditor to verify, protect and prove that the expenses of the Pilot Programme meet the funding requirements.

Is there any monitoring mechanism for the Pilot Programme?

The programme fees are allocated according to the annual loan tier record provided by the Hong Kong Public Library. The Distribution Committee has formulated detailed distribution guidelines and will deal with various situations accordingly. The committee will also review the distribution amount and distribution method regularly. Within three years of implementing the pilot program (2020-2023), the HKPLRA and the government will be conducting regular reviews of the mechanism.

What should I do if I do not receive any email confirmation after my registration to the Pilot Programme?

First check your email’s junk mail folder to see if it’s in the junk mailbox, or you can email us at angie@hkrrls.org.

For further questions or inquiries, please feel free to email us at angie@hkrrls.org or call us at 2516 6268.

Click here for the Pilot Programme Registration.