PLR payment statistics

Designed by Statistics New Zealand, a sample survey is conducted of New Zealand libraries to determine the fund distribution.

Sample survey

The sample survey counts all titles held one year (full survey) and, in the following year, an updating survey counts only new titles. Payments for the year following a full survey are based on the statistics gathered in the full survey of titles.

Dividing up the PLR fund

Once the PLR survey has been conducted the $2.4 million fund is divided by the total number of copies estimated to be held in New Zealand libraries. This gives the book rate. The book rate can vary from year to year based on the number of copies held in libraries.

Authors may notice a change in the payment they receive from the fund every 2 years when all titles are re-surveyed. At this time, authors with older titles generally see a reduction in the payment they receive, while the payment for new titles can increase as they gain popularity and as library stocks are refreshed.

Payment statistics

The years 2010, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2018 were full surveys so all the data was freshly calculated. The PLR Fund increased to $2.4 million in 2020.

2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
Authors registered 1,812 2,023 2,221 1,725 1,788 1,811 1,764 1,829 1,801 1,507
Authors paid 1,666 1,703 1,634 1,576 1,514 1,557 1,553 1,461 1,492 1,180
Book rate $2.87 $2.76 $2.92 $2.82 $3.53 $3.46 $3.39 $3.61 $3.39 $5.61

Payments by genre (2009-2013)

'Children's short' titles have between 24 and 47 pages, and 'children's long' titles have at least 48.

Genre Percentage
Non-fiction, adult 49%
Fiction, adult 15%
Fiction, children's short 14%
Fiction, children's long 11%
Non-fiction, children's short 7%
Non-fiction, children's long 3%