Recording Industry, File Sharing

Discussion in 'TM Lounge' started by Tootsall, Mar 31, 2004.

  1. Tootsall

    Tootsall Fortissimo User

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    Oct 25, 2003
    Yee HAW!
    Making absolutely no editorial comments whatsoever with regards to whether or not folks should be allowed to "trade" or "share" music files, I offer the following tidbit of information for which more can be read at http://www.cbc.ca/stories/2004/03/31/canada/download_court040331 .

    The Canadian High Court has ruled that... "TORONTO - Individuals who share personal copies of music files on the internet are safe after a Federal Court rejected a motion on Wednesday that would have allowed the music industry to sue them.

    Justice Konrad von Finckenstein said the Canadian Recording Industry Association hadn't shown copyright infringement by 29 people who had allowed their music files to be uploaded."

    The judge ruled that placing copyright files into shared folders where they may be accessed by others is no different than placing a photocopy machine in the middle of a library which is full of copyright material.

    The ruling means that there will undoubtedly be a huge push by the recording industry for some kind of copyright reform (something that I WILL comment on and say that in my opinion is GREATLY OVERDUE!) Copyright laws desperately need overhauling to make them simpler and easier to understand for both sides of the issue. Examples:

    What is "fair use"?
    What are "educational purposes"?
    Should a copyright owner be given the legal right to take something "permanently out of print" and make it forever unobtainable to anyone else? (even if that isn't their intended purpose?)
    Can ANYONE understand the murk of international law when it comes to copyright? (International Courts don't seem to be able to).
    Should there be a separation and legal distinction between "literature" and "music"?
     
  2. gus

    gus Pianissimo User

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    Nov 10, 2003
    Other issues really confusing:

    If I make a Big Band Arrangement of a piece I should request
    a permit to composer even in the case that I do not sell the music for profit but If I play a Jazz Standard, which is an arrangement in fact, I shouldn't ( Where is the difference???).
    Please someone tell me because my legal and musical education do not
    allow me to understand it.

    I think that for performance it must be unified the right of the
    lawful owner by only one canon ( The performance canon). Of
    course that anyone who sells arrangements for profit should
    request authorization but private arrangements should be
    permitted and fees could be earned by a performance fee.

    That's my humble opinion.

    Gus
     
  3. Tootsall

    Tootsall Fortissimo User

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    Oct 25, 2003
    Yee HAW!
    Well, Gus...you're getting into something else known as "performance rights" for which "royalty fees" are required. That's a whole OTHER issue but one that is, I agree, equally "muddy". Seems to me that there are layers upon layers of bureaucracy and legal systems (both international AND domestic), the costs of operation and maintenance of which must be sucking most of actual royalties paid from the people for whom the fees were originally collected!

    Not only that, but it also appears to me that it is these very "layers of bureaucratic systems" that are the ones who, in conjunction with the huge recording labels, are most devoutedly working to extend as long as possible their "right" to prevent ANYONE who hasn't paid their "toll fee" from using, referring to, modifying, copying, performing, distributing, etc. ANYTHING that they deem to be "theirs".

    Now I know that someone is getting poised to start typing and "call me out" for apparently promoting the elimination of copyrights or performance fees. Far from it. Hang on a second and keep reading.

    What I am trying to get a discussion going has to do with the need (or lack of need...depending which side of the debate you wish to take), for the rationalization, simplification, and universality of copyrights and performance rights when it comes to music. The Internet is forcing us to consider copyright and performance in a global context; we cannot afford to think "national" any longer (OK, not unless we live where our governments can actually "censor" the internet...ie, China...and even there it's only a matter of time). Our society and indeed our artists don't need a whole army of "legal experts" feeding off the "system" yet that is just what has been created.... and guess who created it? Yup.. those very same copyright lawyers! (Isn't it funny how our legal systems are really good at creating more work for themselves?)

    OK, boys and girls... let the words fly!

    "AND IN THE RED CORNER, WEARING RED TRUNKS AND REPRESENTING ALL GODLESS ANARCHISTS... WE HAVE THE CONTENDER!!!!"
     
  4. jamesfrmphilly

    jamesfrmphilly Piano User

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    Oct 31, 2003
    the north philly ghetto
    if i go on my computer and download a file from Canada over the internet into the US, which laws apply?
     
  5. Tootsall

    Tootsall Fortissimo User

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    Yee HAW!
    Swiss? :lol: That's a good question, James... and one of the reasons I put the topic up for discussion in the first place.
     
  6. jamesfrmphilly

    jamesfrmphilly Piano User

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    Oct 31, 2003
    the north philly ghetto
    if i go to the store and buy a CD and bring it home do i own it?
    if i own it, i can do whatever i want with it.
    i can resell it, trade it, share it, it's mine.
    if i don't own it what did i just spend my money for?
     
  7. Tootsall

    Tootsall Fortissimo User

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    Well, near as I can figure out, you bought it so that YOU could listen to it, your friends and family could listen to it (as long as it was 'gathered round' your own stereo or some other PRIVATE place), but that's about it. You could not play it to earn money from the playing of it; I wouldn't wonder but that you could even be arrested for playing it "in a public place" where any money was being exchanged (else you could get nicked for "public performance"). If you were cruising 'round the town with the top down and the stereo cranked up you might even be in violation of some kind of law other than violating noise bylaws or "being a public nuisance".

    Yep... like I said... there's a whole industry involved in nothing but the "administration and enforcement" of copyright and performance right laws. THAT is what's sucking a lot of the profits out of the music industry.

    Does the above sound silly? You bet it does. But then... so does the whole copyright and performance right issue! I'll note here that in Canada we have a special tax levied on all sales of blank tape cassettes, mini discs, floppy discs, video cassettes, recordable cds. What for? Why... to compensate the music industry for anticipated copying!!!!

    "Gee, Mom... does this mean it's OK to download and burn copies?"

    "Probably, dear. That's why the recording industry is now trying to sue the "uploaders" who make the files available in the first place."

    A real rat's next of rules trying to adjust to the reality of the internet and digital media......
     
  8. lonelyangel

    lonelyangel Pianissimo User

    Age:
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    Nov 8, 2003
    London
    Hi James. You certainly do own the CD but you do not own the music on the CD. You can do what you like with the CD itself, re-sell it, trade it, share it with friends etc. However I don't think that you have the right to sell, trade or profit from the music on the CD, or to deprive the composers and performers of their rights to royalties which are protected under international copyright law.

    For example if you were to buy one CD and then burn 1000 copies and sell them for $10 each and keep that money for yourself - it is basically the same as theft. Even if you make copies and give them away for free you are depriving artists of a proportion of their income (and that includes me BTW). It may seem that just making one copy for a friend can't do any harm - but if that becomes the norm, when multiplied by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide, we have a major problem.

    I am not sure what the answer is to the problem of downloading music from the internet - but it is a mistake to think that this kind of music is free. There will be a huge cost to all of us in the end because if things carry on at the present rate there will soon be no viable recording industry - therefore no work for session musicians and little incentive for new talent to produce new music recordings of the highest quality.

    This subject is too complicated for me at this time of night - but one thing I know is that the answers are not simple and what grows out of this situation may well be very exciting and positive in ways which we can't really imagine at present.

    All the best. Noel.
     
  9. Japle

    Japle Pianissimo User

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    Nov 15, 2003
    Cape Canaveral
    I see no problem with burning a copy of an out-of-print CD for a friend.
    I see no problem with sharing out-of-print tracks on Grokster / Kazaa and I do have a lot of great old jazz in my Grokster folder. There's a PC in my music room that does nothing except share out-of-print music 24/7.
    I do see a problem with burning CDs that are currently for sale, especially if you sell them or sharing the tracks.
    This only applies to classical and jazz, though. Country, rock and rap "musicians" are on their own.
     
  10. Tootsall

    Tootsall Fortissimo User

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    Oct 25, 2003
    Yee HAW!
    OK.... more fuel for the fire: another article on the same story says:
    ..."Wednesday's decision combined with a recent Harvard Business School study on CD sales strikes a blow to a worldwide movement to curb music swapping, says Howard Knopf, a lawyer who represented the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic in the case.

    The study, released Tuesday, found that downloading had no impact on sales of CDs in recent years.

    "The recording industry can't prove that they have a problem," said Knopf. "This P2P may actually be saving the record industry from worse problems." ....

    Full details on THAT found at http://www.canoe.ca/JamMusic/mar31_cria-cp.html
     

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