I'm new to this website so if this isn't posted in the right place, I apologize.
But here's my question:
Let's say, for example, my girlfriend got up drunk at a bar one night and sang karaoke and I video taped it with my Flip. (I wish I had a Flip :D ) If I ended up burning this video file to 8 million DVD's and, for some reason, people loved it and wanted to purchase them...would I be at risk for copyright violation because of the karaoke music?
Given my friend had given me all permissions to do this.
THANKS IN ADVANCE! :)
Most likely, yes. The original publisher of the song has to give permission AND a license for you to use their song. Especially if it's a DVD performance, it will involve a SYNCH license, since the song is synchronized with a picture.
It's not the friend you have to worry about, it's the people who wrote the song, and also the company that created the karaoke music. They hold a copyright on their performance of the song, and they got the license from the publisher to record and distribute that recording/performance. YOU are not authorized to reuse it. Even posting it on YouTube could subject you to a lawsuit, or at least having them (YouTube) pulling it down.
another take ;)
lets assume the song she's singing is a previous hit song- because otherwise why would there be karaoke right?? if you released the recording, you would be eligible for a Mandatory Mechanical from the songwriters- not an issue, thats why they call it 'mandatory'- you get that from the admin peeps and pay your $.0975 per side ;)-
the karaoke tracks is most likely not the original but rather a work for hire sold (not licensed) to the company that owns the machine- ergo not unlike when you use the samples or loops of a program Say EZ drummer- 8 million copies you might run into an issue from the karaoke company...... but i would say unlikely- the arrangements are pretty generic and they would have a hard time noticing or caring :)
if you posted it on Youtube- no issues whatsoever- if you are not using the original master- which Karaoke seldom is- than it would be no different then the millions of live performance videos that are posted every week- Youtube pays a blanket fee to all the PRO's - so the writers "supposedly' get their money- caveat.....i have yet to see anything on my statements from any of the 1/2 dozen songs that people have covered on their youtube postings ;)
if you sold the .MP3 - you pay the admin- and if you sell the video i would imagine fee is similar to the Mechanical- whereas sync fee would be more applicable to use in TV or Film- where you are actually "syncing" a previously recorded piece of music to a film, commercial ect...... this is arguably a live recording - which clearly wouldn't qualify-
so i say ......... aye mattey........ sell away !!!
yes in order to sell the video you must have permission from both the artist and publisher of the work in short laymen terms.
The short answer is, YES, you have a lot of issues in this. Regardless of ASCAP's license granted to youtube. Synch & Mechanical are separate from performance royalties.
I'd suggest a little light reading on the subject: http://www.copyright.gov/title17/ will give you what you need. Chapter 5 should be read first. This will tell you what potential penalties you face from such infringements. It might compel you to remove this post even, before someone who owns the various copyrights surrounding the released material (which would include the original writer's publisher and the use of the "phonorecord" copyright from the karaoke music production company (who entirely own their own version of the recording, but likely licensed the use of the song it's self, as the recording is a separate copyright from the song, noted by a (c) or a (p) from what I recall of my two (c) classes in college.
Chapters 10 & 11 will apply, as will appendices B-E. Might as well read the rest of it while you're there.
In case you have trouble sleeping after reading this post, the provided materials will assist in your efforts.
Now, remove the post.
Good points Pete.
People who take a nonchalant attitude toward copyright ownership have obviously never had someone sell a billion copies of their MASTER RECORDING without being paid royalties (in all forms).
But I can promise you, if a billion copies (or even 25,000) were sold, and the copyright owners of a recording got wind of it (even if mechanicals had been paid to the songwriter/publisher) they would haul the violator's butt into court. I know I would. What dear Alexandra is talking about constitutes a MASTER USE of a prerecorded track put to video and would require not only a MASTER USE LICENSE, but a SYNC FEE as well. It's doesn't matter how many agreements YouTube has with ASCAP and BMI...that only covers public performance to the songwriter/publisher.
On the flip side, nobody gets up in arms about YouTube performances (yet) because not much revenue is generated from them. But, it's like speeding, everyone thinks it's OK because everyone does it, that is, until you get caught enough times and lose your license.
I guess it's just a matter of one's moral fiber on how much of a pirate they want to be.
The fun part really starts AFTER you sell a billion copies without ever getting permission.
the Karaoke tracks are covers of the original tune and they would be paying appropriate licenses in order to sell their product to end users. However, no matter what some one may tell you, their recording of the song is deemed a copyrightable work as a sound recording, so if you used their track on a CD or a DVD or a YouTube Video, you would be in violation of copyright. Are they going to come after you for a YouTube performance? Probably not, BUT, if you go about SELLING CDs and DVDs (physical product), you've you could have a real problem if you don't secure the proper license. That is, if you insist on using pre-recorded Karaoke track. You do however, have the right to record and release and sell your own version of a recording of any previously recorded song, as long as you prepay the mechanical royalties to the songwriters/publishers of the song.
Sound simple? Not really :)
Right, to clarify...
1. The owner of the song and the creator of the song own the song's copyright. For any use in performance, a performance royalty can be assessed, collected, paid, etc...
2. The owner and creator of the song must be requested to grant a license or be compelled to issue a license (after first use) BEFORE the song is used in a commercial release (no matter if for profit or not). This is a Mechanical license. It means you're going to produce copies of the song in any format and "sell" it.
3. The owner and creator of the song also require a separate synch license to be issued for any use where the song will be set to motion picture or videography. In the case of sync, both mechanical and performance royalties may be negotiated as well.
4. Whomever records the song, in any form, is the owner of the phonocopy copyright (p), but not always the song (c). Any use of this particular recording of the song in the aforementioned three points must be licensed. That includes if it's sync'd in a video or movie. It is a SEPARATE COPYRIGHT AND A SEPARATE LICENSE that must be requested and issued prior to commercial release (for or not for profit).
5. You may record a new version of the song with only the simple request for mechanical license. If you make a video using the song, you'll need to gain the permission of both the owner of the song (c) and the recording (p).
6. ASCAP, SESAC & BMI only collect on performance royalties, which is fairly broad, actually, covering (ideally) digital delivery via internet. These three organizations do not issue licenses for synch or mechanical uses.
I hope that clarifies what I said. It is likely a rehash of what Bret said.
Bret Teegarden said:
Good points Pete.