Authors’ Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS)

Key Personnel

  • Executive Director and ALCS Chief Executive: Owen Atkinson
  • Deputy Chief Executive: Barbara Hayes
  • Head of Rights and Licensing: Richard Combes
  • Head of Licensed Works: Alan Smith


The ALCS is a membership organisation which represents writers and the successors of dead writers’ estates in the UK and overseas. They are interested in collecting secondary royalties from secondary uses such as photocopying, digital reproduction, educational recording and repeat use via the Internet. They track such use on a database and pay the money collected to the writers.


The ALCS campaign on behalf of writers to “ensure that writers receive a fair and adequate payment for the use of their work”. The Society also informs writers of issues which may affect them, such as changes to copyright legislation. They are in favour of the copyright regime and campaign for rightsholders’ interests. Their stance on secondary use directly opposes ours. They represent over 74,000 writers, which could make them important opponents.


Their principal allies are the Society of Authors; the National Union of Journalists and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain. They also work with other collecting societies such as the Copyright Licensing Agency; the Publishers Licensing Society; Educational Recording Agency and DACS. They also work with the UK Public Lending Right and the Royal Society for Literature. Their international allies are the International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organisations; the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC) and the European Writers’ Congress.

Further Information