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Old July 3rd, 2013, 12:06 PM   #1
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Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

I know enough about copyright to know I don't know enough about copyright. This forum has pointed out Song Freedom and The Music Bed to get license to sync music with the highlight video, as well as other royalty free sites. However, is there still copyright issues with the ceremony/reception? I shoot the whole wedding and several dances at the reception, all of which include copyrighted music played from the venue's PA. Can I include the video/audio I took during the event on the DVD, or does all of that audio have to go?
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Old July 5th, 2013, 12:31 AM   #2
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

Speaking just for Australian law, there's a copyright problem. Unless this instance counts as "fair use" (I don't think there's any precedence that it does -- it's a grey area -- it's not like quoting a paragraph for discussion in a journal), then you need permission from all copyright holders (lyricist, composer, performer, etc) to reproduce the music, especially in a for-profit situation.

That's the official line, or so I believe.

But licences can be obtained for this sort of usage from the relevant collecting agency, if one exists in your country... Similar situation to copying free-to-air broadcast for educational purposes -- there's often a "one-stop-shop" collecting agency who gives you a licence for basically unlimited copying, then distributes licence moneys to rights-holders.

These sorts of licences don't usually entitle you to display the work online -- just to make X number of private copies for the couple.
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Old July 5th, 2013, 05:43 AM   #3
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

In the UK, the MCPS/PRS issue the Limited Availability licence for weddings. I haven't looked at the detailed information for some time as the last time I did I was well within the requirements, but I seem to recall it is a total duration of 25 minutes for music. Elsewhere on their site there are various details regarding clips of non specific venue played background music, which are not added by the editor and are incidental to the video being part of the captured audio. I also seem to recall that there are limits of about 10 secs on each of these clips, but could be wrong.

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Old July 5th, 2013, 07:45 AM   #4
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

Hi Adrian

Our licences here are supposed to be limited to 20 disks per wedding which is usually more than enough. You are correct in saying that online is not allowed as it's considered broadcast so I tend to use Royalty Free music on YouTube ... I don't think anyone is quite clear on the You Tube policy but it seems if they detect commercial music they zap on an ad and the proceeds of that go to the music distributor ..however I have even had YT tell me I have commercial content with Royalty Free music and it has taken many emails to show them the music has in fact come from a Royalty Free disk.

I did, a few years ago, ask APRA here about, since most videographers seem to use commercial music on their on-line demos, how they manage to do this and to date I have never had a response back.

Music is still a VERY grey area and there seems to be no straight forward answer but based on the fact that DVD's are for personal use by just the bride it's mainly overlooked.

Recording the first dance with the background music supplied by the DJ who has supposedly licenced to play commercial music at a venue is a whole different kettle of fish when it's being re-recorded during a video shoot .... Again a very very vague and unclear market !!

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Old July 5th, 2013, 10:42 AM   #5
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

Byron
All the answers you got were very good information the problem is, every country has different copywrite laws. As for the good ole US of A the answer is, I don't think anyone really knows. Ask 2 people you'll get 4 different answers.
My take is this (and I could very well be wrong on this so it's not gospel, it's my take and if I am wrong then the last 30 years have been a lie)-If you are recording the VIDEO and the audio that is being played is picked up by your microphone(s) and is not the sole purpose of your being there and recording the event then it's incidental and should be no legal issue. In my 30 years of shooting weddings and events I have never had a legal issue with the music that is being played at the event.
Once again this is only my view of it but frankly if the recording industry were to come after videographers because of music being played at the event and captured live and being included in the finished video, I think the recording industry could have a rather large fight on their hands and would be opening a can of worms that no one would be able to close.
Once again, this is NOT a legal opinion just my personal opinion. YMMV!
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Old July 5th, 2013, 01:53 PM   #6
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

In the U.S., part of it is what the finished product is for.

Private use is one thing, public use (which may include selling DVDs of a children's concert), is another. It's why we don't use the original copyrighted music in our high light videos we post online, but do use it on the couples' DVD. It's less about where we recorded the footage, and more about where that footage/music ends up being shown.
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Old July 5th, 2013, 05:34 PM   #7
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

Thanks! I just thought it would be weird to receive the DVD of your wedding to find the wrong song playing while you walked down the aisle or during your first dance. It would get really pricey to try and license every few seconds of music during the reception footage too. I couldn't stay in business. I use royalty free and licensed music in my highlight films and on my website. Thanks again.
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Old July 5th, 2013, 06:41 PM   #8
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

Just do it Byron. Thousands of private home videos are produced everyday, stored, copied, uploaded to YouTube and shared amongst family. Chances of you being dragged through the court system and made an example of are 0.000073% Live dangerously dude. Only the good die young.
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Old July 5th, 2013, 07:20 PM   #9
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Benda View Post
In the U.S., part of it is what the finished product is for.

Private use is one thing, public use (which may include selling DVDs of a children's concert), is another. It's why we don't use the original copyrighted music in our high light videos we post online, but do use it on the couples' DVD. It's less about where we recorded the footage, and more about where that footage/music ends up being shown.
Granted none of us are copyright lawyers, but I'm pretty sure you're wrong on this. There's a difference between it being legal, and Maroon 5's lawyers just not hassling you over something. Just cause we don't hear from them doesn't mean what we are doing is legal. It doesn't matter if it s for public or private usage, you can't burn a Star Wars DVD & sell it saying its for private usage, would this be much different.

Dons case is pretty much the argument, Incidental usage. If the news station is interviewing an athlete after a game, and ACDC is playing in the background at the stadium, that's not considered infringement. However, that doesn't mean someone can shoot a documentary & incidentally be in a car playing Pearl Jam... so it's a grey area.
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Old July 5th, 2013, 08:21 PM   #10
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Re: Can we keep the audio from the ceremony/reception?

It's actually not that grey of an area. Speak to an IP lawyer (I've had this discussion with a few) and they will tell you that your instance does not fall under fair use. The news and educational purposes are covered under fair use as a defense. It is not a license. Technically if you captured copyrighted music and you have any intention of doing anything other than using the captured footage for your own use to simply view it at home, you are committing copyright infringement. I don't even know if you can technically take that footage and edit it. You may need a mechanical and/or synchronization license to do that, even for your own viewing.

Again, if you are in doubt, speak with an attorney. And, as they always tell you in traffic school, ignorance is not a defense.
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