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Music Law

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Music Law

  1. 1. MUSIC LAW a.k.a. Introduction to Music Licensing
  2. 2. Television programs often use popular or recognizable songs.
  3. 3. Each Song Has Two Copyrights <ul><li>the musical composition </li></ul><ul><ul><li>music publisher </li></ul></ul><ul><li>the specific recording </li></ul><ul><ul><li>artist’s record company </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Two Copyrights = Two Licenses <ul><li>musical composition = synchronization rights (sync rights) </li></ul><ul><li>specific recording = master recording rights (master use) </li></ul>
  5. 5. However, <ul><li>if you will record the song yourself </li></ul><ul><ul><li>only need sync rights from the music publisher </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. And, <ul><li>if a recording is of a composition in the public domain -- don’t need sync license </li></ul>
  7. 7. Remember, many songs have several versions . . . <ul><li>owner of the sync right is always the same </li></ul><ul><li>owner of the master will change </li></ul>
  8. 8. Danger, Will Robinson <ul><li>In the context of music licensing for movies or television </li></ul><ul><ul><li>THERE IS NO FAIR USE! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Plus, must distinguish between a comedic work and a parody </li></ul><ul><li>Also, “droit moral” could affect international distribution of work </li></ul>
  9. 9. How to License Music <ul><li>hire someone else </li></ul><ul><li>do it yourself </li></ul>
  10. 10. How to do it yourself <ul><li>determine copyright ownership </li></ul><ul><ul><li>master recordings -- usually only one copyright holder, but rights may be split by territory (especially with foreign artists) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>double-check have correct song and version </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>take care with compilation or soundtrack albums </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>compositions -- may have split </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>split may be by percentage and/or territory </li></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Licensing for television <ul><li>Program shot on film -- need license </li></ul><ul><ul><li>right of reproduction </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Live programs = no reproduction (so no sync license) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>do need performance license </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Taped shows (“Tonight Show” and even first run of primetime show) = ephemeral recording which needs no license </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>but repeats of these programs do need license </li></ul><ul><ul><li>so producers of videotaped programs negotiate for sync and master use licenses prior to taping </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Two Elements of a License <ul><li>Permission </li></ul><ul><li>License Fee </li></ul><ul><ul><li>discretionary </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>no compulsory license as in mechanical licensing for phonorecords </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Basic Terms of a License <ul><li>media </li></ul><ul><li>territory </li></ul><ul><li>length of license </li></ul>
  15. 15. Licensing for a Motion Picture <ul><li>key difference from licensing for television </li></ul><ul><ul><li>will want all rights in all media in perpetuity for a fixed price </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>or a “buyout” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>will include all media whether now known or hereafter developed </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. <ul><li>also sync licenses will include a grant of public performance rights </li></ul><ul><ul><li>U.S. theatrical exhibition only </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>foreign performing rights societies license theatrical exhibition in their respective countries </li></ul></ul>

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