September marks the 40th anniversary of the introduction of Public Lending Right (PLR) in the UK. The Society of Authors took part in a long campaign to get a PLR system introduced in the UK, and this was finally achieved through the Public Lending Right Act 1979. Since then authors have received a modest payment (currently around 8p) whenever their books are borrowed from public libraries. Last year our campaigning achieved the extension of PLR to e-books and e-audio books.
To coincide with the anniversary we are compiling a ‘Birthday card’ to PLR. We are encouraging authors to share short messages about what PLR means to you and why it is so valuable for writers, illustrators and translators.
Please share your messages by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will put these messages together into a 40th birthday card to PLR.
We should never take public funding for PLR for granted, particularly given that the Government plans to review all departmental spending later this year or early next year. We will need to make the case for maintaining the PLR budget and these messages of support from authors will form an important part of our lobbying work as well as celebrating the fantastic achievement of the introduction of PLR.