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#21 spenayoung

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 04:13 AM

I know this is an old thread, but here is the deal for music (in the US at least). If you use any type of music that's recognizably from another song (even samples) then it is copyright infringement unless you:

1) Pay the musician for licensing
2) The recording is public domain (a recording of Mozart is NOT public domain, just the actual music is - the score)
3) You use it for educational purposes (non-commercial)
4) Pay for royalty-free music (many libraries are available on the cheap)
5) The music has a creative commons license allowing use (and read these carefully)
6) You pay for original music created by a composer
7) You create the music yourself not stealing anyone else's work

To be honest, you can get original music or royalty-free music cheaply or even for free. (Work out a deal with a local band. They get exposure and you get the music, but be fair and honest about it, and don't expect them to write an hour of music for free, usually one song - 3 min - is reasonable).

If you want the latest Top 40 hit in your film, then expect to pay big bucks. Now YouTube has gotten around paying musicians by paying musicians micro-cents for continuous use of their music without paying for licensing. Good news if you only want to post on Youtube, lousy news for musicians and anyone that has a film that has stolen music and gets rejected by festivals because of this.

Watch out for "royalty-free" aggregate sites and "public domain" sites. Many times they have stolen music and have not honored the copyright of the artists. And sometimes it is user-dependent, meaning that I could upload a Michael Jackson song and label it "public domain" and the site doesn't know the difference.

Creative Commons DOES have some music available. You can also get original music affordably through contracts at Elance.com or even Fiverr.com . You can contact local composers or those on music message boards, or haunt the film music department at the university. You can buy royalty-free music that sounds similar to what you want.

There really is no excuse for copying music illegally for a film project. There are plenty of free and affordable options. If you are just looking for a viral video for YouTube, it's still infringement, but YouTube has found a loophole.

Creative Commons
http://creativecommons.org/

Sabrina Pena Young
Composer/Libertaria: The Virtual Opera
http://sabrinapenayoung.blogspot.com/


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#22 LugofilmLtd

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Posted 29 October 2014 - 01:18 PM

I thought I would chime in and add that the best source of Creative Commons music I've ever found is Kevin MacLeod's site: Incompetech

Also, I thought it might be prudent to note that when I made a video animating a scene from Avenue Q, the content id system automatically blocked it in Germany and ONLY Germany. Nowhere else seemed to care. To be on the safe side, though, I've steered clear of using stuff like that since then and if I want to use a preexisting piece, I only use stuff that no one will care about (songs from cartoons for instance) and I haven't been slapped with any warnings for that yet.

#23 spenayoung

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Posted 22 December 2014 - 11:14 PM

QUOTE (LugofilmLtd @ Oct 29 2014, 1:18 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I thought I would chime in and add that the best source of Creative Commons music I've ever found is Kevin MacLeod's site: Incompetech

Also, I thought it might be prudent to note that when I made a video animating a scene from Avenue Q, the content id system automatically blocked it in Germany and ONLY Germany. Nowhere else seemed to care. To be on the safe side, though, I've steered clear of using stuff like that since then and if I want to use a preexisting piece, I only use stuff that no one will care about (songs from cartoons for instance) and I haven't been slapped with any warnings for that yet.


One reason that "no one cares" is partially because many cartoons have moved into public domain (in the US, after 75 years of the creator unless the copyright legally passed on to someone else like the family) and they are using classical music of recordings so old that they may be public domain (or like you mentioned, no one cared).

The reality is that anyone, just anyone, that wants to make a serious piece of art needs to find a way to get music legally for their film. There are lots of free, creative commons, affordable options. As a student composer in college, I often wrote music for free just for the experience and a pizza. Now I don't have the time to do this for the most part, though I will make a deal with indie directors sometimes. It really can be easy (and fun!) to work with a real living composer (or even make the score yourself!).

Festivals, commercial organizations (ex. Netflix, TV networks), and even Youtube can reject a film that uses a song illegally in the US at least. I recently did a Ted Talk on my machinima opera, and just for the presentation, I had to have everything, like everything, cleared because it may go on Netflix, TV, or other commercial sites. Of course, the music was my own, and I had permission from the singers, but I also had to avoid any copyright infringement, including any use of logos or mention of specific companies like Apple. I read over the find print for anything that I used (mods, machinima, sound effects), etc. so I don't end up being rejected because I infringed on copyright.

The rules are different everywhere (and in the US, there is a big, BIG fight right now over copyright infringement from the old school and new school musicians). So its always good to dot the I's and cross the T's.

BTW In the US, "fair use" often applies to education in a non-commercial setting. For example, a public school teacher can photocopy a logo legally if they use it in their classroom, or a university professor can show clips from a movie or song without worrying about infringing on copyright as long as they were for a non-profit college. As long as they are not making money, it is fair use. Other images (ex. the president of the US), might be open for fair use, but sometimes the photographer might have the original copyright.





Sabrina Pena Young
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Libertaria: The Virtual Opera

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#24 EugeneE

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Posted 28 December 2014 - 07:15 PM

Excellent write-up spenayoung and very informational.

I'll add a few things. Intellectual property aka IP, is a very complicated thing espically when it comes to copyrights. For example, there are old films, cartoons, etc that are public domain in America but not outside America. And vice versa, you can have a film, music, etc that's out of copyright in a country like Germany but still in copyright everywhere else.

I'd like to point people to the Intellectual property page at Wikipedia that might help http://en.wikipedia....ectual_property .

The main thing about using copyrighted material is that you can only use it if you have the permission of the copyright owner, if not, you can get a cease and desist letter and if the copyright owner is a prick, they might take you right to court without asking you take down your movie.


#25 spenayoung

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Posted 24 December 2016 - 04:34 AM

As a PS....watch out for ANYTHING, absolutely ANYTHING, that is owned by Disney. This now includes Star Wars and the Marvel universe. They are notorious for literally "suing grandmas" and daycares for illegal use of their characters. That also includes a lot of music. So be sure that you steer clear of the Disney Intellectual Property.


Sabrina Pena Young
Composer/Filmmaker/Sci-fi Junkie
Libertaria: The Virtual Opera

You must unlearn what you have learned.
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#26 bobowilliam27

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Posted 28 December 2017 - 09:41 AM

I think copyright issue is in media always a biggest popular question that comes in mind. When we upload some images to our blog post. Specially images are all ready exist on internet. But most of time no one gonna make it biggest issue until you harm him in any way.




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