DV Info Net

DV Info Net (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/)
-   Taking Care of Business (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/taking-care-business/)
-   -   Music "used with permission" (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/taking-care-business/289797-music-used-permission.html)

Bob Kerner August 17th, 2009 12:20 PM

Music "used with permission"
 
More and more, I'm seeing work on Vimeo with the caption : "music used with permission."

Just how does one "get permission" and what sort of time frame does it take?

I shoot short little things for work (as a teacher) and personal enjoyment. I'm not a pro and do not generate income from my work but, just the same I'd like to use background music as legally as possible and that includes getting proper permission.

How do I determine who to ask permission of to take a song out of my Itunes library and put it in a film? Should I expect to wait months or is this something that can be taken care of quickly once I convince them I'm not using it for commercial purposes?

Thanks
Bob

Steve House August 17th, 2009 12:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bob Kerner (Post 1234658)
More and more, I'm seeing work on Vimeo with the caption : "music used with permission."

Just how does one "get permission" and what sort of time frame does it take?

I shoot short little things for work (as a teacher) and personal enjoyment. I'm not a pro and do not generate income from my work but, just the same I'd like to use background music as legally as possible and that includes getting proper permission.

How do I determine who to ask permission of to take a song out of my Itunes library and put it in a film? Should I expect to wait months or is this something that can be taken care of quickly once I convince them I'm not using it for commercial purposes?

Thanks
Bob

It really doesn't matter if it's being used commercially or not ... to use music as a soundtrack in your video you need a sync license from the owner of the copyright to the words and music, typically the publisher and, unless you're recording yourself or your own musicians in performance, also a Master Use license from the owner of the copyright to the specific recording you wish to use, typically that's the record label that released it. While ASCAP doesn't handle either license, thjey have a huge song database online that you can freely search to find out who you need to contact. Depending on the music and the use, time and costs can be all over the map, ranging from no charge and a few emails passing back and forth, to many thousands of dollars and contracts negotiations that would make a lawyer faint, to simply un-obtainable at all.

David Barnett August 17th, 2009 12:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bob Kerner (Post 1234658)
More and more, I'm seeing work on Vimeo with the caption : "music used with permission."

Just how does one "get permission" and what sort of time frame does it take?

If it's stuff like Pearl Jam or Guns N Roses (A-list stuff) there's likely a 100% chance they didn't "get permission". If it's an unheard of, but decent song, I'd guess they're probably friends with the band, or know them well enough to use the song in return of added promotion. My guess is they're just saying "used with permission" with no idea of copyright law in the first place.

Chris Davis August 17th, 2009 01:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bob Kerner (Post 1234658)
Just how does one "get permission" and what sort of time frame does it take?

In the two cases where I've used music with clearance, all it took was a phone call or a couple emails. In both cases I let the client take care of it. They simply queried an online database (like Steve mentioned) then sent an email describing the project and asked for permission. In one case, the permission was granted at no charge, and in the other case they used some formula to come up with a fee of $4. In both cases it only took a couple days.

Quote:

Originally Posted by David Barnett (Post 1234678)
If it's stuff like Pearl Jam or Guns N Roses (A-list stuff) there's likely a 100% chance they didn't "get permission". If it's an unheard of, but decent song, I'd guess they're probably friends with the band, or know them well enough to use the song in return of added promotion. My guess is they're just saying "used with permission" with no idea of copyright law in the first place.

I agree with your last statement... but the $4 song my client got clearance for was "Who'll Stop The Rain" from CCR. Certainly not an unknown song and you could argue that CCR was the GNR of their day. :)

Jeff Emery August 17th, 2009 01:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by David Barnett (Post 1234678)
Pearl Jam or Guns N Roses (A-list stuff)

Ha ha. Now that's funny

David Barnett August 17th, 2009 02:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chris Davis (Post 1234794)

I agree with your last statement... but the $4 song my client got clearance for was "Who'll Stop The Rain" from CCR. Certainly not an unknown song and you could argue that CCR was the GNR of their day. :)

Wow, I am shocked it was that low. However, I'm still willing to bet a good majority of the vids out there don't go thru all those steps. Nice to know you did it though, and for that cheap. Just curious, what was the project?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Jeff Emery (Post 1234911)
Ha ha. Now that's funny

Are you mocking GnR being "A-list" stuff?? Old GnR, ok?!

(j/k, they just popped into my head at the time I was typing)

Bob Kerner August 17th, 2009 06:04 PM

Thanks. I'll start with the ASCAP database

Chris Davis August 17th, 2009 09:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by David Barnett (Post 1235019)
Wow, I am shocked it was that low. However, I'm still willing to bet a good majority of the vids out there don't go thru all those steps. Nice to know you did it though, and for that cheap. Just curious, what was the project?

The project included a short segment with someone singing the chorus to the song. So we only needed sync rights and not master recording rights. The distribution is limited to 200 copies. However, I didn't do it, the client did. In fact, I pretty much told them they wouldn't be able to get the rights and to have a contingency plan for when they were told "no".

Brian Boyko August 19th, 2009 04:05 PM

"Used with Permission" is not a legal term, it's an informal one, meant to sidestep around legal contracts and problems with informal works.

Basically, it's just as much of a hassle for most bands to "officially license" their work as it is for videomakers to "officially license" the work as well, involving lawyers and the like.

In short "used with permission" is to "Hey, could I borrow your lawnmower this weekend?" as "sync licensing" is to "Here are the liability waivers for injury and death, as well as the $300 deposit and acceptance of lawnmower borrowing license terms. Please sign here."

Most indie bands are more than welcome to let you use their stuff, many are willing to let you use it for a nominal fee if not for free. But you do have to ask them first.

Steve House August 19th, 2009 05:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Brian Boyko (Post 1243892)
...
Basically, it's just as much of a hassle for most bands to "officially license" their work as it is for videomakers to "officially license" the work as well, involving lawyers and the like.

...

It doesn't have to be a hassle and it doesn't require lawyers. Assuming the band or artist actually owns the copyright to the song, all it really takes is a memo saying "Joe Filmmaker is hereby granted a license to synchonize the words and music of the song "Rub-a-Dub Dub" to images in his film "Three Men In A Tub" or words to that affect. Lawyers may make it more complicated, especially if payments, time-limits to the license, restrictions on the use of the film, and limitations on the geographic areas of distribution get involved but the basic license only requires a written notice of who is granting what priviledges to who. AFAIK the only thing really required is that it be in writing and that can be as simple as a one-paragraph note that summarizes the understanding between the two parties.

Paul Tauger August 24th, 2009 11:24 AM

Actually, there's no requirement that a license be in writing -- only assignments of all rights and title in a copyright work require a license. However, as with any oral agreement, proof of the license and its terms can be problematic if an issue surfaces later.

A lawyer's contribution to a license consists of:

- a detailed and legally-accurate description of the nature and scope of the rights transferred, e.g. exclusive vs. non-exclusive, media, distribution, etc.;

- royalty arrangements, if any;

- representations and warranties regarding potential infringement, i.e. what happens if what was licensed turns out to infringe someone else's rights?;

- what rules of law will be used to construe the language of the license;

- where and how any dispute arising out of the license will be resolved;

- whether the license is assignable to someone else;

- how and under what circumstances the license can be terminated.

You can determine for yourself whether these kinds of concerns are important to the transaction. Always remember this, however: contracts (of which a license is a species) are never important when everything goes right, only when something goes wrong. Consider them the legal version of, "hope for the best, plan for the worst."

Vince Pachiano October 1st, 2009 11:00 PM

Royalty Free - Free music
 
Some music is available as Free, Royalty-Free.

In most cases, they only ask that you put a music-credit on the final product.
It's my guess that this is what "Used with permission" infers
Be sure to read the T&C

Andrew Smith October 2nd, 2009 02:48 AM

I'm a big fan of the Creative Commons licensed music at Jamendo. Incredibly good quality.

I've been back to the site recently and they have a Jamendo PRO service set up now. I'm thinking that it's a headache eliminating no-brainer to have a one-stop shop for permissions etc ... and I'd feel better knowing that the artist gets a decent percentage of the money instead of what would drip-filter through from a record company arrangement.

Andrew

Steve House October 2nd, 2009 04:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Andrew Smith (Post 1425643)
I'm a big fan of the Creative Commons licensed music at Jamendo. Incredibly good quality.

I've been back to the site recently and they have a Jamendo PRO service set up now. I'm thinking that it's a headache eliminating no-brainer to have a one-stop shop for permissions etc ... and I'd feel better knowing that the artist gets a decent percentage of the money instead of what would drip-filter through from a record company arrangement.

Andrew

You'll notice, though, they don't have a license that covers video posted for viewing on vimeo or youtube.

Worthy of note is your common misconception that the "artist" is a signifigant player in the music licensing game. For indys perhaps they sometimes are but most of the time they are virtually irrelevant. Look up the copyright info on the individual tracks in a favourite CD or two and see who actually wrote the music - rarely is it the artist. The copyrights on the music, and the fees for the license to use it in your video (the sync license), are owned by the composer, lyricist, and publisher of the words and melody and it's not often that is the performing artist who records the song or the label that released it that's involved. Then if you want to use a certain artist's recording, the label that paid for the studio time, engineers, etc, etc owns the copyright to the recording - don't they deserve compensation for all their expense incurred in making the recording you wish to use? All too often, the "artists" who performed for the recording are really not much more than employees of the producer. Who owns the copyright to the video you produce (and is entitled to profit from its sale and distribution), you as the producer of the video or the cast you hired to perfom in it? Even if you had big-name actors, they are performing but it's the producer and director that are the film's creators. A lot of music recorded and released commercially, even by name talent, is exactly like that - the artist is hired by the producer and label to perform the music for the recording the producer is creating. It's a "work for hire" owned by the label, the employer, and not the performer, the employee.

Andrew Smith October 2nd, 2009 04:49 AM

Hmmm ... I think that headache is coming back now. :-P

I can only hope that the Jamendo model is working well for the CC community.

Andrew


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:18 AM.

DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2021 The Digital Video Information Network