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Old August 20th, 2017, 07:19 AM   #1
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Music Licensing basics - Help

Dear fellow forum members,

Can anyone tell me or send me a link that I can read to acquaint myself with music licensing?
I have quite a few question I don't know much about.

1) Is licensing music necessary? What happens if I use copyright music?
2) If I license music, what advantages does it give me vs not licensing it?
3) Licensing music, will it allow me to freely post on Youtube, Vimeo, Facebook my promotional wedding video trailers with no fear?

Why I am confused now is because I purchased a license for one of my songs, posted on Youtube, but now they claim they have the right to run ads on it. I mean I can use almost all songs on Youtube as long as I allow ads to run on it that's what I thought, so if they are still gonna run ads on my licensed music what's the point?
I used Music Bed for licensing.
Here is a capture below of what message I received from youtube.
Attached Thumbnails
Music Licensing basics - Help-music-dispute.jpg  
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Old August 20th, 2017, 10:25 AM   #2
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Have you contacted Music Bed about this and asked how to document to YouTube that the music is indeed licensed?

Andrew
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Old August 20th, 2017, 11:45 AM   #3
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Smith View Post
Have you contacted Music Bed about this and asked how to document to YouTube that the music is indeed licensed?

Andrew
Hi Andrew, yes, wrote an e-mail to them yesterday and waiting for their reply!
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Old August 21st, 2017, 07:42 AM   #4
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

I know Songfreedom gives you the license contract in a pdf. I use Vimeo & don't encounter this dilemna, but I would think you can send in the pdf or contract to YT for approval. In fact I recall doing this years ago for a Stock20.com song I think. It was the early days & I think YT was just flagging anything with clean music.

To answer your questions as best I can tho:

1) Is licensing music necessary? What happens if I use copyright music? IMHO it is 'necessary'. Personally I hate wedding vids with nonlicensed music, and I know some songs can be obtained legally for cheap at sites like Songfreedom, but its a limited amount. Secondly years ago a video went viral for Tony Romos wedding and the videographer used a Coldplay song & was sued re it. You never know, plus its just good practice. What if in a year or two the music industry changes their mind and pulls ALL videos from YT, you'll have a backlog of trailers requiring a re-edit.

2) If I license music, what advantages does it give me vs not licensing it? Freedom of mind without fear, and you 'should' be able to show on YT without ads (hopefully).

3) Licensing music, will it allow me to freely post on Youtube, Vimeo, Facebook my promotional wedding video trailers with no fear? Vimeo doesn't flag it (I think I read they're allowed to just do a form of revenue share with ASCAP or whoever). Kinda still in that Angel Investors mode. FB & YT flags it, I would think if you did pay for the song you can send in some form of the contract where you bought it from.


As an aside, for anyone who previously used songfreedom.com it seems they switched their format to a monthly subscription service, not a pay per song. Unfortunate, as I don't think I use them enough to justify the price. TBH I was mostly using them for the few hits they had (Gaga, Maroon 5 etc) and had pretty much used most of the songs already, don't wanna repeat them so I'll have to learn to create highlights using songs from TMB & others.
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Old September 21st, 2017, 06:02 PM   #5
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Hi Hakob,

I've researched this thorny issue a little, and in my country (UK), and I'd imagine in most Western countries, the rules appear to be:

1) Is licensing music necessary? What happens if I use copyright music?

You are not allowed to use music which have been composed by other artists without permission, unless it falls under fair use (which is a grey area that includes news-gathering, parody use and some other circumstances).

In regards to wedding videos, it's its not specifically music that specifies free to use then you would need to license it if you want to be totally 100% legal. The second question is a matter of luck. Most record companies wouldn't pursue a small company in using one of their songs due to the time and money it would cost to resolve it; however there is still that risk, especially if you're a bigger deal and not charging relatively small amounts or getting small levels of attention on your videos (if published online).

Having said that, a client's wedding film on disc or USB is VERY unlikely to even be seen by a record company or artist. 99.99% of the risk is from any online uploads.

2) If I license music, what advantages does it give me vs not licensing it?

Well, if you're dealing with other professional business partners then it's always a nice touch to say you're doing things by the book. But a wedding client is most certainly not going to care if their discs are licensed or not. I know I wouldn't. So, it can offer you some protection and peace of mind; but again, the chances of a licensing company or artist going after you based on work only your clients will see is extremely small.

3) Licensing music, will it allow me to freely post on Youtube, Vimeo, Facebook my promotional wedding video trailers with no fear?

Online is a whole different story. I have checked with PPL/PRS licensing and they say they cannot offer licences for online - you must get permission from the artist or you may get away with uploading on YouTube and simply allowing the company to place adverts on your video if they want to. The chances of a records company trying to sue you through YouTube with no prior warning to at least take the video down first is unlikely, but not unheard-of.

YouTube also employ algorithms to detect copyrighted music and may automatically mute or make your your video private as soon as it has been uploaded. That just depends on the song, and perhaps some luck.

Vimeo seems to currently be the online format of choice as it offers no such algorithm check, plus it is a lot more closed off than YouTube, so only the people you choose to share your video with are most likely to actually see it, and not lots of random people, including copyright enforcers, that you will find on YouTube.

Facebook also can detect copyrighted music, but doesn't appear to be as harsh as YouTube in my experience.

But the bottom line is that you're technically breaking the law by uploading any copyrighted music without permission, even if you have a PRS licence, as this covers physical media playback only. It's your choice whether to do things 100% legal or take your chances.
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Old September 21st, 2017, 07:53 PM   #6
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

What was the reply from Music Bed?

Andrew
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Old September 27th, 2017, 05:22 AM   #7
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lewis Raymond View Post
Hi Hakob,

I've researched this thorny issue a little, and in my country (UK), and I'd imagine in most Western countries, the rules appear to be:

1) Is licensing music necessary? What happens if I use copyright music?

You are not allowed to use music which have been composed by other artists without permission, unless it falls under fair use (which is a grey area that includes news-gathering, parody use and some other circumstances).

In regards to wedding videos, it's its not specifically music that specifies free to use then you would need to license it if you want to be totally 100% legal. The second question is a matter of luck. Most record companies wouldn't pursue a small company in using one of their songs due to the time and money it would cost to resolve it; however there is still that risk, especially if you're a bigger deal and not charging relatively small amounts or getting small levels of attention on your videos (if published online).

Having said that, a client's wedding film on disc or USB is VERY unlikely to even be seen by a record company or artist. 99.99% of the risk is from any online uploads.

2) If I license music, what advantages does it give me vs not licensing it?

Well, if you're dealing with other professional business partners then it's always a nice touch to say you're doing things by the book. But a wedding client is most certainly not going to care if their discs are licensed or not. I know I wouldn't. So, it can offer you some protection and peace of mind; but again, the chances of a licensing company or artist going after you based on work only your clients will see is extremely small.

3) Licensing music, will it allow me to freely post on Youtube, Vimeo, Facebook my promotional wedding video trailers with no fear?

Online is a whole different story. I have checked with PPL/PRS licensing and they say they cannot offer licences for online - you must get permission from the artist or you may get away with uploading on YouTube and simply allowing the company to place adverts on your video if they want to. The chances of a records company trying to sue you through YouTube with no prior warning to at least take the video down first is unlikely, but not unheard-of.

YouTube also employ algorithms to detect copyrighted music and may automatically mute or make your your video private as soon as it has been uploaded. That just depends on the song, and perhaps some luck.

Vimeo seems to currently be the online format of choice as it offers no such algorithm check, plus it is a lot more closed off than YouTube, so only the people you choose to share your video with are most likely to actually see it, and not lots of random people, including copyright enforcers, that you will find on YouTube.

Facebook also can detect copyrighted music, but doesn't appear to be as harsh as YouTube in my experience.

But the bottom line is that you're technically breaking the law by uploading any copyrighted music without permission, even if you have a PRS licence, as this covers physical media playback only. It's your choice whether to do things 100% legal or take your chances.

So, licensing through licensing sites only allows me to use artists song on a physical media copy like Blu-Ray/DVD/USB?
Wait so does this mean I have to contact the artist every time to get their permission even after licencing their song every time I post something on youtube for it to be 100% legit?
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Old September 27th, 2017, 06:32 AM   #8
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

https://www.prsformusic.com/licences...ed-manufacture

https://www.prsformusic.com/licences...-music-licence

Paul.
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Last edited by Paul Kellett; September 27th, 2017 at 06:33 AM. Reason: .
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Old September 28th, 2017, 12:07 PM   #9
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hakob Hakobyan View Post
So, licensing through licensing sites only allows me to use artists song on a physical media copy like Blu-Ray/DVD/USB?
Wait so does this mean I have to contact the artist every time to get their permission even after licencing their song every time I post something on youtube for it to be 100% legit?
No. There is some confusion here between blanket licensing for physical media in the UK (Australia has a similar scheme) & licensing a particular track from the likes of SongFreedom. In the former case it's not available for online use whereas in the latter case it is.
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Old February 13th, 2018, 12:04 PM   #10
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Running into this same issue. In the past I always uploaded my wedding videos to Vimeo, just out of habit from the beginning days of 2010/2012ish era. Never really thought to upload to YT till now so I'm beginning to double up & upload to YT also.

To clarify, I licensed all my music thru Songfreedom.com or The Music Bed. I got hit with a copyright disclaimer right away. All good, I just uploaded my Songfreedom license pdf to Google Drive & linked in in my 'dispute' stated I paid $60 for the songs license, figuring that'll secure it. Well about an hour later I get a generic decline saying the copyright holder 'has decided that their copyright claim is still valid'???


Well the songfreedom license specifically reads I now "have the ability to synchronize and stream this title" and that "5 DVD digital copies and stream on your company's website and social sites related to your company"?

Is Youtube not considered a 'social site'? Just upsetting, hopefully it doesn't incur a strike against my YT account, although admittedly I am not an avid YT creator, was trying to get more into it.

Anyone else encounter musical claims against you when you had SF or TMB clearances? Did you eventually win out or just let the ads run in the end. Maybe at some point they'll review it further within the 30 day window.
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Old February 13th, 2018, 01:07 PM   #11
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Echo what other have said

1. Use Vimeo instead of Youtube. Yt has become a money hungry ad machine with heavy handed copyright policy ď youíre guilty until proven innocentĒ. It is what it is, they arenít changing so save yourself the grief.

2. Buying a license or using copyright free music is the right thing to do donít let YT get you down.
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Old February 13th, 2018, 01:57 PM   #12
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Barnett View Post
Anyone else encounter musical claims against you when you had SF
I have had issues with songfreedom a few year back, in their database was a song from a known band that I heard playing on the radio, think it was 20 dollar or so I had to pay for unlimited use and I found that a bit hard to believe so I checked with Sabam, the Belgian Association of Authors, Composers and Publishers and they told me "no way" and if I wanted to use that song I had to pay additional licensing cost which would be a lot higher.

Songfreedom kept on saying however I had nothing to worry about until I showed them the reply from sabam and then they said it had to do with GEMA in Germany and restrictions for use on youtube but that had nothing to do with my problem as I was using it on vimeo.

Basically they lied to me and that was the last time I used music from them, now I use artlist.io and strictly stay on vimeo, so far so good.
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Old February 13th, 2018, 02:30 PM   #13
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

I donít like licensing pricing practices and I think there is a lot room for abuse where companies sell you rights they donít really own. I was looking at musicbed and they ask how much money is the production. This is akin to buying a bottle of water and the price being variable based on your income.
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Old February 13th, 2018, 06:18 PM   #14
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

If I put a video on YouTube and use my Smart Sound Royalty Free music You Tube instantly sends me an email and puts ads on the video (or even bans it in some countries) I dispute the claim with them and refer them back to SmartSound and after 30 days or so they send me another email saying the dispute was successful and the ads have been removed. OK, all well and good but my video STILL had to run with annoying ads for 30 days AND the person claiming copyright probably got a bit of income too.

The whole system is badly flawed so you might as well use the latest and greatest music and accept the advertising and income generation. They will nail you one way or another!!

What is really silly is that if publishers charged a simple and reasonable fee to use music they would make a fortune from the millions of videos posted every day!!
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Old February 14th, 2018, 11:13 AM   #15
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Re: Music Licensing basics - Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
If I put a video on YouTube and use my Smart Sound Royalty Free music You Tube instantly sends me an email and puts ads on the video (or even bans it in some countries) I dispute the claim with them and refer them back to SmartSound and after 30 days or so they send me another email saying the dispute was successful and the ads have been removed. OK, all well and good but my video STILL had to run with annoying ads for 30 days AND the person claiming copyright probably got a bit of income too.
That is no longer true, when a claim is disputed the ad income is held by YouTube and assigned retroactively to the party that prevails.
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