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Old July 17th, 2005, 08:28 PM   #46
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The thread is dieing!

At this time, this is a dieing thread. How about some thoughtful input for change. Not just another place to get a license, or what ASCAP and BMI should do, but some changes to the copyright laws!

The location change may have something to do with it, but I think much more it is that most are afraid to respond. Let's make some posts here.

I am working on a post to help define the direction of this. When I do post it, respond, have some guts. Remember, this is a Digital Video forum, not a recording artist and producers forum. We should be looking to our interests and that of the public in general.

Think about it! Chris said that maybe we could make this forum an instrument for change, (can't get to the exact quote, but something to that effect), how about we really do it!

Mike
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Old July 17th, 2005, 09:02 PM   #47
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"Remember, this is a Digital Video forum, not a recording artist and producers forum. We should be looking to our interests and that of the public in general."

AS if there is a difference???? Copyright protects the AUTHOR of a work. Music, video, written, filmed... we are all 'authors' in the laws eyes.


Mike, there is no need to change the copyright law. Zero. Nada. Zip. The copyright law simply states the types of rights that reside with the creator.It also allows for penalties for theft and mis-appropriation of those rights. The "author" has the right to do with them as they please. There is absolutely NOTHING in the copyright law that says this cannot be done.

What is needed, is an appeal to the licensing agencies for a structure for licensing the songs at this level. Basically, that comes down to an appeal to the licensing agencies greed. "Hey, here's an utapped potential for lots more money for you and your artists... why not tap it?"

You seem like an earnest fellow, why not write a letter to BMI/ASCAP and ask them about it?

It's not an important issue to me, I don't do wedding videos. And that seems to be the biggest market for this. And I license music I use on a needle drop or buy out basis anyway.
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Old July 17th, 2005, 10:28 PM   #48
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I thought the idea of incorporating in Australia was an interesting one. What are the legal issues surrounding this idea?

For example at what point does U.S. copyright law have jurisdiction? If the production was shot in the U.S. but edited in Australia, but then sold in the U.S. would the Australian company be liable under U.S. law? What if the production was shot in the U.S., edited in Australin then given (like 5 copies)free of charge to the B/G?
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Old July 18th, 2005, 05:00 AM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Teutsch
At this time, this is a dieing thread. How about some thoughtful input for change. Not just another place to get a license, or what ASCAP and BMI should do, but some changes to the copyright laws!

...

Mike
But what changes in the copyright laws would you suggest that could help resolve the issue? There is nothing in the LAW as it stands that prevents one from licensing the synchronization rights to any music he wishes. The issue is really one of affordability more than availability. Want a license to use music from Phantom of the Opera in your wedding business? I'm sure Weber or whoever holds the copyright would be more than happy to license it to you - but will your clients go for the 250 kilobuck bill you'll have hand them for their wedding coverage?

There is nothing in the law as it stands that prevents the clearance houses from offering limited use blanket licenses for music to be included in wedding and events videos, etc, in exactly the same way they process performance clearance licenses now, should they wish to do so. I was chastized in an earlier post for suggesting people wanted to make offering blanket synchronization licensing mandatory but since it's already permitted under the law, that's the only sort of legislative action I can see that would affect the issue we're facing. Either that or change the law so as to remove synchronization and mechanical as rights separate from performance rights and lump them all together as one so that use in weddings, events, recitals, concert videos, theatrical perfrormance incidental and diegetic music, dance performance videos, etc would be covered by the existing ASCAP and BMI clearances. But I can't see the copyright holders of much popular music and the rights holders for arrangments and performances of even otherwise public domain traditional, classical, and jazz music, etc, going for that, not with the political clout the RIAA has these days.

One potential change in the law that might work is to get the right to use, or to commission the use on one's behalf, music from a recording one has purchased in a personal video that will not be shown publically or sold included under the doctrine of "Fair use." But the recording and movie industries aren't even happy with an individual's right to duplicate materials that you own for your own personal use. Right now it's legal for you to buy a CD and then make a backup or make a copy to take with you to play in your car or to rip it onto your MP3 player. But mark my words, those rights are under attack and they're not going to be happy until you have to buy a full-bore retail copy for each player you intend to listen to the disc on - one for the living room, one for the bedroom, one for the car, etc. Want a backup? Buy two copies! In fact, if they can figure out how to do with music CD's what was the original idea behind DiVX DVDs (and what they're doing right now with some online music sites), have the recordings self-destruct after some number of playings or elapsed time period, they'll do it. Their notion of heaven is where you have to pay them a fee every time you hear the song and they're going to stay as close to that as they can get. Heck, they'd even charge a licensing fee for letting you sing it in the shower if they could figure out how to administer it! So I'd be very surprised if any change to the copyright laws that grants even the most limited rights to consumers beyond what already exists would be tolerated.
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Old July 18th, 2005, 05:14 AM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Teutsch
...
When I do post it, respond, have some guts. Remember, this is a Digital Video forum, not a recording artist and producers forum. We should be looking to our interests and that of the public in general.
...
Mike
An addendum ... but we ARE recording artists and producers. it is only the recording medium and perhaps the scale of distribution that is different. Try to tell any of the "above the line" people in a film production that they aren't creative artists! <grin> A recording is a recording whether it is video or audio, the result of our creative work and a source of our livelyhood. But remember, every argument that we make why we should be able to use someone's music under XXX conditions for our purposes applies equally to others who wish to use our video production efforts for their purposes. What's good for the goose is definitely good for the gander and we shouldn't ask for privileges that we ourselves would be unwilling to grant to others regarding our own work.
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Old July 18th, 2005, 07:31 AM   #51
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I am all in favor of a streamlined process by which people who are interested in licensing their works to videographers are able to do so. I think, however, that it is several orders of magnitude more complex than some people are thinking so I wanted to mention why.

1. ASCAP and BMI handle songwriting rights only. When the laws were written songwriters had all the power, performers had none. Consequently, if I play Nirvana's version of "The Man Who Sold the World" on the radio or in my nightclub, David Bowie (and his publisher) gets paid, Nirvana gets nothing. This is all done under a compulsory licensing setup with a fixed fee. I can cover "The Man Who Sold the World" today, and I don't have to ask anyone... I just pay a fixed fee and go.

In the years since the arrangement was made, performers developed power. Any new agreements would have to involve not only approval of the songwriter, but also of the performer - in all cases a completely different entity (even when a band is performing originials - the performance rights include musicians who are not the songwriter, the songwriting rights include the publishing house).

2. Given that any arrangement would have to be an opt-in arrangement, rather than compulsory, the start-up would be something like this:

- decide on a rate scheme that everyone will accept, which probably means a tiered system so that David Bowie can be payed more for his songwriting than I am, and Nirvana can be paid more for their performance than I am.

- contact every single songwriting copyright holder and then every single performance copyright holder that has songs in the mainstream and ask them if they'd like to opt in.

- record all that, register all that, track it, accept payments and pay the copyright holders.

- police it, so that now since the public knows it is sometimes legal to use a smash hit in your wedding video, it doesn't just become an open license for everyone to do it for free. Also police it so that the songs that people did not opt-in for use are not used, and that the ones who opted-in at different rates are paid at the right amount.

And really that's just scratching the surface.

3. Because performers have been left out of the royalty structure on so much, they are not going to be generous on this one.


Anyway, those are just some of the majors. I am not saying it can't be done, and I'm not saying it shouldn't be done. I'm just saying it isn't happening this year, and if we started today it isn't happening the year after next either.
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Last edited by Barry Gribble; July 18th, 2005 at 02:23 PM. Reason: typo
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Old July 20th, 2005, 02:37 AM   #52
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Grassroots Music Copyright Campaign

[QUOTE=Mike Teutsch]At this time, this is a dieing thread. How about some thoughtful input for change. Not just another place to get a license, or what ASCAP and BMI should do, but some changes to the copyright laws!

~~~~~~~~~~~~

I am new here, thank you for this thread. I agree, change needs to happen and I am more than willing to do whatever I need to do.

So here is my input...let's take some action!

I am a WEVA member, but WEVA doesn't seem to be interested in lobbying. We will be in Vegas for a nat'l conference in 2 weeks though so I will talk to some people then.

How do we start a grassroots campaign to allow for wedding & event videographers to use copyrighted music? This is very important to me as I don't want to be doing anything illegal (or unethical) and I feel that favorite songs really do add such an emotional appeal to each wedding video.

I think that is what needs to be relayed to Congress, not just THAT we use copyrighted music but WHY we use copyrighted music.

I used my great-uncle's favorite Frank Sinatra song in a montage for him, it meant so much to them, and he died 6 months later. A wedding videographers work offers such joy to each client ~ I feel strongly that this issue needs to be resolved.

Thanks,

Emily Auer
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Old July 20th, 2005, 09:36 AM   #53
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Emily,

First, welcome to the boards... it is nice to have new faces (?). As you will see below, I disagree with you on this issue but I always welcome thoughtful debate so thanks for participating.

Emily, Mike,

If you are talking about a change to the copyright law then you are talking about creating a system that takes away a copyright holder's right to control his own intellectual property because you would like to use it to make money. While it is only an intellectual excercise to discuss it, because it is never going to happen, I'll go on record against it.

Emily, I am really glad that your great-uncle got to see your moving piece with his favorite Frank Sinatra tune. I love that type of thing, and you can do that kind of touching stuff all day if you are doing it free for your friends and relatives and no one is going to sue you for it. If you want to do it to make your services more valuable to a paying client, however, you can be sued. There is nothing ethical about using someone else's intellectual property against their will to make money.

But, guys, if you do happen to succeed in getting legislation passed that would let me use Sting's music in my videos, do you think you could tack on a rider that said I could use his house in Malibu too?
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Old July 21st, 2005, 08:43 PM   #54
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How many members does WEVA have? How many videographers in the United States? I think the numbers tell the story.
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Old August 4th, 2005, 11:56 AM   #55
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like i keep saying..
approach your local politician with the Australian model of copyright licensing for event videography..

in this thread there are posts from me with links.. head to AMCOS and look at their model. It works for everyone, and noone misses out. Laws dont need to be changed and theres no legislation which needs to be passed. Its a workable, logical system that WORKS and EVERYONE can have the best of both worlds, from the song writer, to the producer to the video guy whos using that track to sync his cuts to..

instead of jsut sitting here arguing about how its going to be done, take note of a workable system and DO something.. im amazed they dont have something like already established... i mean when u consider nightclubs, bars, pool halls, hell even telephone hold music... all these need to be licensed..

There is a means to satisfay OUR market as well as the artists themselves..
Why waste energy when its already been done for you?? the model is there.. use it.. why speculate and theorise when there is an actual working system already in place in other countries? What makes the US any different? Hell im using tracks published throughout the world and im doing it legally... thats why i pay 500 a year ... i pay them, they do the rest.. if they didnt exist, id STILL use the music due to the fact that the rest of the industry here and pretty much everywhere you go, uses copywritten music, even if it is illegal to do so....
Imagine a wedding guy teling you that you cant have your favourite song in your video, but you go and see another producer who says that even though he legally shouldnt, he will do it anyway.. who would they go with??
Go to most bridal sites online and youll see demos using cmmercial music... DO you mena to tell me know that this producer has gone to the publisher and requested permission?? I dont think so....
SO what theyr edoing is ilegal then.. yessireebob
its a catch 22 for you guys, but like i said dont waste you renergy theorising a solution when a solution is already modelled out for you..

hell anything to make money is acceptable within the music industry.. and this is just another moneymaker for them..
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Old August 4th, 2005, 12:22 PM   #56
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Peter,

I agree, the Ausie model seems to be a good one. No need to change the copyright law at all. BMI and ASCAAP just need to look at the aussie model and implement it.

By the way , you wrote " i mean when u consider nightclubs, bars, pool halls, hell even telephone hold music... all these need to be licensed.. '

They ARE licensed in the US, under BMI and ASCAAP, these people pay a fee to have the music playing in the background. So it's not a far fetched concept to ask for a synch rights licensing fee for a limited scale.

THAT"S what WEVA should be lobbying FOR, that's who WEVA should be lobbying TO (ASCAAP, BMI). Skip congress, not necessary.
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Old August 4th, 2005, 05:17 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by Richard Alvarez
Peter,

I agree, the Ausie model seems to be a good one. No need to change the copyright law at all. BMI and ASCAAP just need to look at the aussie model and implement it.

By the way , you wrote " i mean when u consider nightclubs, bars, pool halls, hell even telephone hold music... all these need to be licensed.. '

They ARE licensed in the US, under BMI and ASCAAP, these people pay a fee to have the music playing in the background. So it's not a far fetched concept to ask for a synch rights licensing fee for a limited scale.

THAT"S what WEVA should be lobbying FOR, that's who WEVA should be lobbying TO (ASCAAP, BMI). Skip congress, not necessary.
Here in Canada a couple of years ago the dentists all got letters informing them they had to begin paying licensing fees for the background music in their treatment rooms, even if they were doing nothing more than playing a regular commerical radio station over the PA.
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Old August 4th, 2005, 07:03 PM   #58
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Thats right. I knew a guy whose job it was, to walk into restaraunts, malls, stores, bars, and listen for the music playing. Then make a note, and send the letter if they hadn't subscribed.

Again, there is a NEED... for low-end videographers to license popular music. What's different from the restaraunts/bars/radio licensing... is the fact that the music is being SYNCHED, and therefore a derivative work is being created and DISTRIBUTED. This has more tail end value to the videographer than the restaraunt owner.

How much.... don't know.

So Someone has to convince BMI,and ASCAAP... to convince ITs SIGNATORY ARTISTS, that a viable income stream can be had by licensing their music in this manner.
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Old August 4th, 2005, 09:18 PM   #59
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Got a sync license

Yes after four months of struggle i got a synch license for a song. I have a post in this thread asking for the procedure. Finally i appointed a attorney to call them regularly and bother them so that i can get it done. Finally it is.
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Old August 4th, 2005, 10:57 PM   #60
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Harikrishnan,

Great... persistence pays - as annoying as it is. Can you tell us what the song was? What the video was? What is cost?

Thanks.
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