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The Music Business – Part 3 Copyright Basics Presented by: Debra J. Fickler, Esq.

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Presentation on theme: "The Music Business – Part 3 Copyright Basics Presented by: Debra J. Fickler, Esq."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Music Business – Part 3 Copyright Basics Presented by: Debra J. Fickler, Esq.

2 Copyrights 17 USC § 101 et seq. 1 Subject matter and Scope of Copyright 2 Copyright Ownership and Transfer 3 Duration of Copyright 4 Copyright Notice, Deposit and Reg. 5 Copyright Infringement and Remedies

3 Copyright Subsists in Original Works of Authorship: Fixed in any tangible medium of expression Some minimal level of creativity is required

4 Copyright Protects: Written works, music, dramatic works, pantomimes and choreographic works, pictorial, graphic and sculptural works, motion pictures and other audiovisual works, sound recordings, architectural works and computer software –Compilations –Derivative works

5 Copyright does NOT protect: Works not been fixed in tangible form of expression Titles, names, short phrases and slogans; familiar symbols or designs; mere variations of lettering or coloring; mere listing of ingredients or contents Ideas, procedures, processes

6 Rights of the Copyright Owner Right to prevent others from: –Reproducing the work, preparing derivative works, distributing copies, performing the work publicly, displaying the work publicly, transmitting Certain works of visual arts also have rights of attribution and integrity Exception: Doctrine of Fair Use

7 Doctrine of Fair Use Permits limited use by non-owners Strict Limits: –Non-substantial portions –Only for purposes of criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship or research –Non-commercial use

8 Who Owns the Copyright? Author = Owner Exception: The Doctrine of Work Made for Hire

9 Work Made for Hire Work prepared by employee within the scope of his or her employment; or Specially ordered or commissioned AND –For use as: A contribution to a collective work; Part of a motion picture or other audiovisual work; A translation; A supplementary work; A compilation; An instructional text; AND Only if parties expressly agree in a signed, written agreement.

10 Work Made for Hire (continued) Why WMFH usually does not apply: –Contract employees own their own work –Work does not fall into one of enumerated categories –No agreement or agreement not in writing –Author does not sign agreement Solution: Get an assignment

11 Duration of Copyrights Works created after January 1, 1978 –Author’s life plus 70 years –Joint works – last surviving author’s life plus 70 years –WMFH, anonymous and some pseudonymous works – shorter of 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation Works created before January 1, 1978 – ask your copyright lawyer

12 How Copyrights Are Secured Registration: file application for registration with Library of Congress –Three month reach back from publication –Specimen(s) required – Can file at any time during life of copyright

13 Avoid “Innocent Infringement” Copyright work should be marked with ©, “copyright” or “copr.” plus publication date and name of author or other owner


15 Deposit Material

16 Copyright Considerations Music Arrangement Lyrics Complied Work – Album Performance Art Work

17 Licenses Public Performance License Reproduction Rights Authorized to make copies Mechanical License Licensed to reproduce and distribute Synchronization License Music composition to audio-visual work Digital Performance Rights Internet streaming

18 Industry Organizations ASCAP BMI SESAC Specific Countries/Regions Jukebox License Office Music Trade Associations

19 Examples of Licenses Blanket License –ASCAP: repertory of over 8.5 million songs –Replay of music or perform –No Dramatic Performances –No Mechanical Rights Program License –Per Use

20 Licenses (cont.) Performance Rights –Place open to public –Performance that is transmitted by device Record Label Retransmission Rebroadcast of concert Sound Recording Typically owned by record label Synchronization Rights

21 Royalties ASCAP compulsory mechanical CD Rate –9.1 cents per composition –plus1.75 cent per minute for songs over 5 minutes –No Mechanical Rights Royalties go to members (minus costs) Examples

22 ASCAP Exemptions Religious organizations Non-profit educational uses Institutions that sell music Government State fairs and agricultural events Veterans/fraternal charitable events Charitable performances (No fee or pay) Movie theaters

23 Questions?

24 About the Presenter : Debra J. Fickler is an attorney with Fickler Law Office, LLC. She has experience in several areas of intellectual property law with a focus on patent, trademark and copyright procurement and enforcement. She also has experience in patent, copyright and trade secret litigation including appeal matters. She is registered to practice before the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Fickler Law Office LLC. 2300 Main Street Suite 900 Kansas City, MO 64108 816 | 448-3727 Fax: 816 | 326-3411 You may email Debra at

25 The Music Business – Part 3 Copyright Basics

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