Timeline of notable dates


1983 - CLA was set up by ALCS and PLS and a tripartite agreement formed in which the two societies appointed CLA as their agent to administer their member's rights and agreed how licence fee income should be distributed.

1984 - CLA started its first photocopying licence scheme and issued its first licence.

1986 - CLA issued a first blanket licence in the education sector; to state schools and colleges.

1987 - CLA made its first distribution, paying out £518k to rights holders.

1990 - The higher education licence was launched following a successful experimental scheme started in 1988.

1991 - The British Library Document Supply Centre became the first public body to be licensed by CLA. At this time CLA set up a joint working party with the CBI to develop a licensing scheme for the business sector - subsequently launched its first business licensing scheme.

1995 - Negotiations with the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) led to the licensing of virtually all of the major pharmaceutical companies. Similarly in 1996 a model licence for law firms was agreed with the Law Society of England and Wales.

1996 - To counter illegal copying within British industry, CLA established its Copywatch campaign. In the same year the campaign won a substantial out of court settlement from a major engineering firm and in 2002 successfully obtained a high court injunction, seizing over 500 illegally copied books from a copyshop in Nottingham.   

1999 - CLA led the way internationally by becoming the first RRO to introduce a licence scheme to scan printed material to create digital copies. In 2002 the first scanning licence for business was launched.

2000 - CLA's higher education licence scheme was referred to the Copyright Tribunal by Universities UK. Ruling was made in 2002.

2002 - CLA extended its agency agreement to DACS and a representative of DACS joined the CLA board. This meant that licensees would be covered to copy images and artistic works contained within articles being copied.

2003 - Copyright legislation was amended to comply with an EU directive removing certain legal copying exceptions and leaving businesses much more likely to need permissions for copying content. This paved the way for CLA to roll out a series of business licensing initiatives.

2006 - Total distributions of licence fees since 1987 reached £400million.

2008 - CLA celebrates 25 years working for creators and publishers. This year also saw the launch of the first CLA Licences to include permissions to copy from digital publications. 

2010 - The CLA Schools Licence was the first to include rights to copy free-to-view website content.

2011 - The first CLA Multinational licence was introduced enabling UK head quartered organisations to extend to overseas workers the same rights enjoyed by their UK based employees under the same CLA licence.  

2012 - CLA introduces the 'Title Search' facility which makes it easy to check what can be copied under the CLA Licence - the biggest improvement to the process since the excluded and included works lists were first searchable online in 2006.

Automated Content Access Protocol Alliance Against IP Theft