Myndstef shall collect royalties for public use of it´s members copyrighted visual work, according to Myndstef´s tariffs, available here, through special agreements or by individual agreements, collective agreements or ECL by law, according to the usage or other terms.
Myndstef undertakes collection of royalties for both members and non-members visual artists in cases where collective licensing contracts are made for the use of visual art works, and at the same time takes responsibility for the payment of these fees to the respective authors according to the Icelandic CMO bill no 88 from 2019, (Icelandic: “Lög um sameiginlega umsýslu höfundaréttar”, available here). Myndstef is authorized to do extended collective agreements (ECL) in reference to Art. 12 b, Art. 14.3., Art. 23.1 and article 25.5.b. of the Icelandic copyright bill, no 73 from 1972, available here.
Furthermore, Myndstef is granted authority to grant a general extended collective licensing based on paragraph 2. Art. 26 a, meeting further conditions and obtainment of recognition, cf. paragraph 2.-4. of the same Art.
In addition Myndstef holds a board seat at IHM and Fjölís, and is distributed collective royalties for retransmission rights (IHM), private copying (IHM) and reprographic rights for schools, churches, choirs and public institutions (FJÖlÍS) on behalf all visual artists, both it´s members and non members.
Myndstef undertakes collection of droit de suite royalties for the commercial resale of works of art, according to Art. 25 b of the Copyright Act, as amended by Art. 9 of Act no. 57/1992, and as per Section V (cf. paragraph 6 of Art. 23) of the Act respecting Professional Commerce no. 28/1998. Collection of these fees is also subject to the provisions of Regulation no. 486/2001.
Furthermore, Myndstef shall handle relations with comparable bodies in other countries, i.e. through reciprocal agreements, please see here.
Myndstef also represent members in relation to Fjölís, IHM, Bókasafnssjóð (the library fund), Bakland LHÍ (, Miðstöð skapandi greina, Fulltrúaráð KÍM (the Icelandic visual art export), Höfundaréttarráð (The Icelandic Copyright association) and other umbrella authors associations in accordance with relevant purposes, please see here.
Myndstef also monitors the development of laws, regulations and business practices in this area, and negotiates with public and private bodies on its members behalf in matters involving their copyright interests for the public presentation and use of their works. Myndstef nominates a representative for the Copyright Committee of the Icelandic Ministry of Culture, please see here.
Last but not for least, Myndstef provides free legal assistance and practice, up to a certain and well defined point, only to it´s members, and 20% is withdrawn for managing and legal costs if any copyright fee is collected through these individual cases.
The funds that Myndstef collects shall be allocated as far as possible individually to the respective copyright holder, according to the Icelandic CMO bill from 2019.
Allocation takes place four times a year for certain rights, and one time a year for others. Collection and management costs will be deducted from the allocation, as well as taxes. In some cases social cultural and educational services will also be deducted. All costs that are deducted are defined in the yearly transparency report from Myndstef, available (only in Icelandic) here.
These are the collective rights that Myndstef’s collects and distributes:
- Resale rights. Upon resale, the proportion of resale right is calculated on the basis of Article 25. b. of the Copyright Act 1972 no. 73
- Retransmission. IHM collects fund collectively from retransmission companies, through ECL agreements. This is then distributed between IHM rightholders groups, and distributed by Myndstef to it´s rightholders.
- Private copying. IHM collects fund collectively from the state budget, through ECL an agreement and by law (Art. 11.4. of the Icelandic copyright bill). This is then distributed between IHM rightholders groups, and distributed by Myndstef to it´s rightholders.
- Reprographic rights. Fjölís collects fund collectively from the state and other operators and entities, through ECL agreements. This is then distributed between Fjölís rightholders groups, and distributed by Myndstef to it´s rightholders.
- Public lending rights. Public lending rights are not collected through the copyright system in Iceland, but Myndstef holds a seat at the Library fund association, which distributes compensation for rental of books through libraries, only to authors (writers, visual artists and translators).
- Museum Myndstef holds numerous ECL agreements with Icelandic art, design, props and other visual art museums and collects copyright fee according to their usage.
- Educational use. Myndstef holds both blanket license agreements and collective licenses with some educational institutions, but reprographics right is mostly collected and managed by Fjölís.
- The Marrakesh treaty. Myndstef has an agreement with the library for disabled, for their usage according to the exceptions of the Marrakesh treaty, and Art. 19 in the Icelandic copyright bill.
Allocation due to extended collective licensing where enough data is not provided for the collection and distribution of royalties, abides a registration rule and is distributed through „Rétthafasjóð Myndstefs“. Rétthafasjóður Myndstefs is open for registration once a year, where visual artists and other rights holders register their works online, over one years period. Members as well as non-members can register for distribution. The Board appoints an allocation committee that goes over the registration and grants distribution in accordance with allocation rules. Please see more about the allocation rules for Rétthafasjóður Myndstefs on our homepage here. Myndstef has also recently purchased the same distribution program as STEF (The Icelandic composers CMO), and will shortly begin to distribute according to a point system, hopefully in the year 2025.
Non-members and individual members in demarcated cases may claim an individual fee for use on the basis of an ECL, according to and following the restrictions in Art 26 of the Icelandic copyright bill. A request for such a fee will only be addressed to the association and must be in writing.
The Board can also decide on allocation of grants to member associations for special projects under their supervision.
The Board is also authorized to allocate special funds which by their nature cannot be allocated directly on an individual basis or cannot be distributed through „Rétthafasjóð Myndstefs“. These funds will be distributed in the form of grants to working visual artists after the managing costs have been deducted.
On a rough average Myndstef retains 20% of payments for the administration and collection of copyright and resale rights, as well as 20% for social cultural and educational services. Each member and beneficiary must have collected ISK 10,000 or more in order to be paid out.
Copyright income is taxed according to Icelandic copyright tax law. On 2 September 2019, the Icelandic parliament approved amendments to the law, which means that copyright income ceases to be taxed as income tax (36.94% – 46.24%) but will be taxed as capital income tax (22%). The law entered into force on 1 January 2020 and will be implemented with withholding tax in the year 2020 and with the levy in the year 2021. Copyright income paid to authors / rightholders from Myndstef will therefore be taxed in income until 2019 (i.e. in the tax return for the year 2020).
In order to be able to submit copyright payments, Myndstef needs e.g. to have information on the ID number, address and bank account of the right holder.
Copyright is inherited and is valid for 70 years from the date of the author’s death. In order to be able to pay out to heirs, Myndstef must have a certified agent for all heirs, who is an advocate for all heirs in copyright matters and receives payments from Myndstef. Capital income tax is also deducted from payments to heirs.
Revised and updated
HFS, September 2023