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Old November 24th, 2010, 02:34 PM   #1
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ASCAP music and YouTube

This was new information to me, but as of this summer, ASCAP allegedly entered into a licensing agreement with YoutTube and is finalizing the same agreement with Vimeo.

As such, they tell me that if you produce a video for a commercial client, and the client places that video on their for-profit website...as long as they embed the video on YouTube, and then link to the video (instead of placing it directly in their website), they can use all the ASCAP copyrighted music they want.

Local dentist wants to use Lady Gaga tunes for their home page video? No problem, apparently. Go figure.

Not sure if this also covers BMI and SESAC copyrights, though.
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Old November 28th, 2010, 09:11 AM   #2
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How do you find out what music is ASCAP?
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Old November 28th, 2010, 12:07 PM   #3
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FAQ: How To Acquire Music For Films

Has some nice FAQs, including a link to check for ASCAP status of music clips.
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Old November 29th, 2010, 09:27 AM   #4
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Not sure ASCAP thinks YouTube embeds are okay.

See this link:American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Look under the heading "Criticism"
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Last edited by Roger Van Duyn; November 29th, 2010 at 09:28 AM. Reason: further comment
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Old November 29th, 2010, 12:52 PM   #5
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Another thread on this....
YouTube and BMI: Performance Rights extend to Videos?
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Old November 29th, 2010, 01:51 PM   #6
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Text of a letter from ASCAP:

In a message dated 11/15/2010 7:02:57 A.M. Pacific Standard Time, BKrebs@ascap.com writes:
Hello,

Thank you for your email. Vimeo has applied for an ASCAP license, and we
are still in negotiations with them. Recently, ASCAP and YouTube reached
an agreement for YouTube.com, as well as YouTube embeds, which will allow
them to use ASCAP music. Therefore, it does not appear to be an unlicensed
use of music from your examples.

Feel free to contact me if you have any additional questions.

Kind Regards,

Bryan Krebs
Account Executive/Business Analyst
ASCAP New Media & Technology
One Lincoln Plaza
New York, NY 10023
ph: (212) 621-6271
fax: (678) 239-3595
Email: bkrebs@ascap.com

As well as this follow-up for clarification:


In a message dated 11/15/2010 10:34:24 A.M. Pacific Standard Time, BKrebs@ascap.com writes:
Hi Bill,

If the only music use on a website is on a YouTube embedded video, then
that site does not need a license as YouTube is responsible.

Kind Regards,

Bryan Krebs
Account Executive/Business Analyst
ASCAP New Media & Technology
One Lincoln Plaza
New York, NY 10023
ph: (212) 621-6271
fax: (678) 239-3595
Email: bkrebs@ascap.com
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Old November 29th, 2010, 04:42 PM   #7
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Therefore, it does not appear to be an unlicensed
use of music from your examples.

What are the examples? Just because some videos have the okay, does that mean they all do? And does Mr. Krebs have the authority of someone very high up in ASCAP?

From your letter, it appears hopeful the situation is improving. But I'm cautious. We're the above example videos a work for hire? Exactly what is allowed now? Your letter is very recent, but ASCAP has still played hardball quite recently with Creative Commons. Maybe YouTube has given them a very substantial sum of money. Maybe Vimeo will too. Maybe one of our biggest hassles as event videographers will soon be over. Maybe. I hope so.

I'm waiting to see. Right now, I'll stick exclusively to Royalty Free Music until the situation clarifies.

I'm also curious why I haven't been able to find anything about this by searching Help on YouTube. One would think that there would have been a MAJOR press release. After all, it would be very big news in our industry.
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Old November 30th, 2010, 06:30 AM   #8
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Roger,

If you want some other background info, YouTube in the UK recently did a deal with the PRS (UK equivalent of ASCAP). You can read some details of the deal at Youtube and PRS make peace as musicians protest about plans to punish file sharers | Technology | The Guardian

Cheers,

Anthony
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Old December 1st, 2010, 05:04 PM   #9
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Roger:

The examples I provided to the ASCAP guy were a commercial, for-profit website with an embedded video linked to Youtube that contained music from the Kill Bill sound track; and a queue of videos, on YouTube from the same video creator that used well known commercial music like songs from the band Queen.

I also would prefer to use music for the time being that I know is safe. As I scoured the interwebs in doing research before posting my queries to ASCAP, I found a bunch of hits about ASCAP going after exactly this kind of activity, and almost nothing about this reported licensing arrangement between YouTube and ASCAP.

The genesis of my inquiries was because of this video producer, who was very upfront about his position that anything he can find on the internet is freely available to use however he wants in his videos. I was actually quite shocked that ASCAP had apparently thrown in the towel on this kind of thing, especially in a for-profit situation.
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Old December 2nd, 2010, 11:30 AM   #10
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Thanks Bill,

Looks like you exercised due diligence. Maybe ASCAP and YouTube just want to keep it quiet, and not let the whole world know that things have opened up. You know, throwing in the towel and admitting you can't stop it is one thing. Spreading the word and starting a frenzy is another.

There are times a pop song might be nice to use, but you hear some of them way too much already. Being a little out of the mainstream can be a good thing.
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Old December 3rd, 2010, 11:07 AM   #11
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Hi Bill,
Interesting topic, but I think it would be wise to look a little further into this. I wonder if your reference is to the replace audio service on Youtube?
This basically searches the uploaded file for an audio match with music from the catalogue and then displays an ad for that track over the video whilst playing. While there might be a some clients who would be okay with this, I imagine that many wouldn't?
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Old December 3rd, 2010, 01:27 PM   #12
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Good question. That would be annoying.
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Old December 9th, 2010, 11:55 AM   #13
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Very interesting. Looking forwards to learning more. Sounds like this is terrible news for music artists though.
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Old December 20th, 2010, 05:18 AM   #14
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Is there a public reference to this agreement? I Googled "YouTube Ascap" and all I see are news articles from September and previous about ASCAP winning lawsuits against YouTube. TIA
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Old December 20th, 2010, 12:07 PM   #15
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I haven't been able to find a reference either. Personally, I'll stick to licensed music. Some risks just aren't worth taking. No pop song is worth the potential trouble that could come from using it.
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