CONTRACTS MIDTERM - Contracts, Copyrights, and Publishing...

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Contracts, Copyrights, and  Publishing MIDTERM PAPER October 23, 2007
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CONTRACTS, COPYRIGHTS, AND PUBLISHING It’s not easy to make money in the music business. And, when you do make money, you have to make sure you aren’t going to get sued for something you were unaware of. For this reason, it is necessary to be completely aware of copyrights, publishing laws, and the details of recording contracts. Before you sign anything, you should be in complete understanding of what the contract entails. Before you sign away your publishing rights, you should have more than just a vague idea of what you are doing. The music business is no joke; one wrong move can cost you everything. A career that took you years to establish could be destroyed in a matter of minutes. Copyrighting, Fair Use, and Intellectual Property First and foremost, it is crucial that as an artist, you get your work(s) copyrighted. This will protect your music (your intellectual property). Unless your work is being used as “fair use,” the artist will have to grant permission to use the copyrighted material. Generally, the artist will be paid. This, of course, leads to the definition of “fair use.” One example of fair use would be photocopying sheet music for the purpose of page turns. In other words, if an orchestral piece has been purchased, and if photocopying makes the performances of said piece go smoothly, then the copyright owner is (a) not losing any money, since the piece has been purchased, and (b) possibly benefiting from better performances. Another example of fair use would be using a song for educational purposes. Additionally, using a song during a news broadcast is considered fair use. What happens if you use something that isn’t yours? Let’s say a band decides to take samples from another band’s song. The first band doesn’t get the rights to use this copyrighted material, and a few months later the song debuts on MTV. Once the second band hears about this song, they can file a lawsuit. The first band can kiss their careers goodbye… unless their song was a parody. Making a parody of a song using samples from the original is NOT considered a
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This test prep was uploaded on 04/04/2008 for the course MUS I taught by Professor Ferry during the Fall '07 term at SUNY Purchase.

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CONTRACTS MIDTERM - Contracts, Copyrights, and Publishing...

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