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Taking Care of Business
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Old May 16th, 2010, 02:38 AM   #16
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Roger, glad you got the YouTube thing sorted. We too often use Smartsound & are glad to hear confirmation that their licence really does allow us to do what we thought it did.

Incidentally the licences available to videographers in the UK to use just about any commercial music or musical performance are only for producing limited runs of DVDs, BluRay disks or similar physical product. The question of taking that same video that you have licensed music for the DVD version & putting it on your website is still problematic. There are many different licences available from MCPS & PRS for all sorts of use e.g. playing records to entertain your employees or customers but no simple specific one for Internet use that is the equivalent of the Private Function Video Dubbing Licence & Limited Manufacture Licence for physical product.
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Old May 16th, 2010, 12:59 PM   #17
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Hello Nigel,

I'm certainly glad the mess with YouTube got straightened out too. Personally, I'm a stickler about honoring the intellectual property rights of others, and make a big deal about it on two different pages of my web site.

It really got under my skin for a while. At least now I have some real ammunition that comes from personal experience when I explain to them why I won't even consider using an unlicensed popular song in any of my productions, no matter how much they might want it.
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Old May 16th, 2010, 06:00 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Van Duyn View Post

Interesting. Still waiting to hear more from YouTube. Anyone else heard of anything like this?
I had adverts pop up one one of our videos a couple of months back. I knew I'd purchased the music rights and some investigation revealed that some of Youtube's "partners" can be a little "over enthusiastic" in identifying material they claim to own. Looking at various forums some people suggest that it's little more than a scam to try and rake in some adwords revenue. You become a Youtube partner, claim copyright with a scattergun approach and Youtube will put the adverts onto the video. You then sit back and then wait for the revenue to roll in before someone notices.

I emailed Youtube and the adverts were removed within about an hour. It is all very unsatisfactory though.
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Old May 16th, 2010, 09:46 PM   #19
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In Australia we do have a kind of 'blanket' licensing fee for some video productions. We can pay the fee on an annual basis ($700 last time I checked) or a per-project basis.

However, it does not give you total, unrestricted use of the songs. It does not give you a license to broadcast or distribute, so it is only suitable for private projects such as weddings. You are not allowed to post the video online, only to make the required number of DVD's for the client.

I think for projects you want to have shown online or in festivals or to distribute on DVD, you might have more luck contacting the individual artist (obviously this won't work with Beyonce or Lady GaGa, but might with smaller, but still popular artists). On each occasion I have done this, usually for short film festivals, the artist has replied almost immediately and said they just have to ask the powers higher up, and it's always been OK'd. They've sent out signed letters and I've never had to pay a cent. I think if you can appeal to the artist first, let them know your situation and also tell them why you think their song is perfect for your needs, it can tip their favour your way a bit, rather than sending an email to a faceless legal clerk at a giant music corporation and waiting for a generic response. However each time I've done this it has been for Australian artists, not top-40 stuff.
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Old May 17th, 2010, 04:12 PM   #20
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Thing that you've got to watch out for is the artist or even the artist's label may not be ABLE to grant permission. It depends on who owns the copyright to the words and musical notes. If you use a recording by Beyonce, for example, you need a sync license from whoever wrote and published the lyrics and melody to the music itself and also a master use license from whoever owns the copyright on Beyonce's specifc recording of those words and music.They are two distinct and separate copyrights. Her label may very well own the copyright to the audio recording but NOT own the rights to the words and music.
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Old May 21st, 2010, 09:32 PM   #21
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Well, I'm lucky in that my wife is a concert pianist and we have a lot of friends who are also musicians, conductors, etc.

So if I need something I usually can get it performed quite well in exchamge for at most a nice dinner out and a few beers and record it myself. SInce I only use classical/traditional music (a lot written before 1822 let alone 1922. I think I'm covered.

Anyone think differently? Just curious if there might still be a gotcha lurking somewhere.
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Old May 22nd, 2010, 07:16 AM   #22
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The only gotcha is a modern arrangement of a public domain original could still be copyright in its own right.
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Old May 22nd, 2010, 11:25 AM   #23
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Good point.

We often use so-called "Urtext" editions - ie unedited and unarranged reprints of original scores. Or in some cases I might re-arrange or transcribe a piece from older sources. But we aren't paranoid about it.
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