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garyg
09-15-2011, 01:04 PM
I know there are a lot of folks on here who post videos on YouTube and I'm curious about copyright issues. If you post a cover without paying royalties can you get in trouble or does youTube have a license like many clubs do? cheers, g2 p.s. can you cover a Beatles tune?

salukulady
09-15-2011, 01:07 PM
This subject has been discussed here at great lengths. Try the search function, perhaps.

OldePhart
09-15-2011, 01:10 PM
Short answer, we've had members here have their YouTube accounts closed over copyright issues. Others seem to get by. Seems to depend mostly on whose toes you step on and how hard, I suppose. Oh - and YouTube most certainly does not pay licensing fees - read your YouTube user's agreement.

John

garyg
09-15-2011, 01:20 PM
@salukulady thanks for the kind advice. I did in fact search the archives under youTube and copyright and failed to find any clear interpretation or advice. Like StalePhart says (sorry couldn't resist it) "It depends" which although likely accurate doesn't really leave me any closer to knowing what I can and can't post there. Given that many of the archived posts were old, in my naivete I thought that perhaps with time, clearer guidelines have been issued. Anyone else have any guidance on the current state of affairs or is Oldey's advice the best that I'll get. TIA, g2

itsme
09-15-2011, 01:58 PM
youtube copyright is a whole can of worms.

One the one hand, you've got people like Prince's camp suing a woman over a 30-second clip of her toddler dancing to one of his tunes. (I think the mom won this one under "fair use".)

Then there are clips where YT has disabled the audio if it's copyrighted, such as an audio recording when it's owned by a record label.

There are also publishers aggressively going after those who do cover tunes (I think the Eagles' songs are pretty much off limits).

I believe YT has agreements with certain copyright holders, allowing them to monetize use by showing ads with your videos.

I had a friend who produced a local "COPS" type show. The real "COPS" people did a takedown notice, thinking it was one of their clips.

YT basically operates under the "safe harbor" clause of the DMCA. They are not required to active police what users post, only to react when a copyright holder alleges infringement. So enforcement under their posted TOS is inconsistent at best.

"It depends" is about as solid of an answer as you'll get.

foxfair
09-15-2011, 02:16 PM
Quick check before you upload anything: search the song name on youtube first, don't upload if you cannot see any previous cover exists. For example: Hotel California is copyrighted strictly, and will be taken down for sure -- actually I think all Eagles songs are copyrighted in the same case

Another check after uploads: if you forgot to mention about the artist/any other info, make sure you revisit the page. It is the last chance you can fix it until youtube takes any action on your account.

or.... dont bother uploading to youtube if you don't want to understand the license stuff. There are other options like vimeo, blip.tv and dailymotion

arpie
09-15-2011, 02:36 PM
Just the other day, I was contacted by Youtube saying that the backing music to a couple of family vids were copywrited to EMI but they were 'safe' for now - just to expect adverts to show when playing the clips! They only picked up on 1 of the Seekers songs that I used - not the other one!! Odd!

I thought that so long as you weren't making money from it, that basically it was OK?

Roberta

cb56
09-16-2011, 01:27 AM
I had two of my videos flagged for copyright violation. Problem is they were both public domain hymns. I filled out the available form saying they weren't copyrighted materials. Never heard another word about it.

garyg
09-16-2011, 01:44 AM
Thanks everyone, maybe I'll stick to old folk songs in the public domain. Interesting comment about Prince because the Prince tribute by the Wellington Ukulele Orchestra is one of the best uke pieces on there. Onwards and upwards, g2

Ukuleleblues
09-16-2011, 01:47 AM
It's funny, they even run "profiles" on the songs to flag them. I guess they have software that compares the sound wav to the original. I had the Lion Sleeps tonight flagged, ROCK in the USA flagged and American PIE. Two of them were embedded in with other songs and were not titled. They will tell you if you have encroached and you may need to take the vids down.

AC Baltimore
09-16-2011, 01:54 AM
The law is the law, I understand that. But obsessing over someone singing your song just for kicks and in no way making money from it? that seems insane to me.

Noobie
09-16-2011, 03:10 AM
Well folks, today the EU voted to extend copyright on music from 50 to 70 years. No more public domain for you!
http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2011/09/no-beatles-for-you-eu-adds-20-years-to-music-copyrights.ars

Kristi.G
09-16-2011, 03:23 AM
Thanks everyone, maybe I'll stick to old folk songs in the public domain. Interesting comment about Prince because the Prince tribute by the Wellington Ukulele Orchestra is one of the best uke pieces on there. Onwards and upwards, g2

And I imagine that ASCAP/BMI licensing fees are being paid on it, so there's no violation of copyright.

Stevelele
09-16-2011, 04:31 AM
If you aren't making money or trying to make money off of your youtube video, then the likelihood that a music publisher will actually bring a lawsuit against you for playing a song they own is almost zero. The worst that will happen is that youtube on behalf of the music publisher will ask you to take down the song, but that's it. There is a misconception about what happened in that lawsuit between Prince's music publisher and the family. The family is actually the one that brought a civiil suit against the publisher, alleging that they were abusing the Digital Millennium Copyright Act by bringing an infringement takedown notice against the family, which was not a lawsuit, but only a takedown notice. Music publishers are mostly concerned about people who are allowing other users to download or replay masters (the original songs). As you can see from the myriad of covers out there, it's more the exception, rather than the rule, that covers lead to takedown notices, and even then, they are unlikely to lead to lawsuits. This analysis changes, however, if you're trying to make money off of your cover somehow, e.g. by selling ads or selling mp3s of your performance.

raecarter
09-16-2011, 04:32 AM
I sometimes get notices that the copyright of a song I have published may be owned by someone else. A flag comes up in settings saying so. I just delete the video apart from that I have had no issues

Keef
09-16-2011, 04:59 AM
I submitted my skydiving video during the video we are talking and I am being interviewed unfortunatly the guy that made the video for me put BTO's Takin care of business in the background ..... so youtube muted the video I guess thats better than deleting it but a lot of its value is lost

Ted4
09-16-2011, 05:52 AM
Too many lawyers with too little to do.

uke4ia
09-16-2011, 09:05 AM
I've looked through the copyright info on YouTube. Don't freak out if a video is flagged as "Matched third party content." The info on YouTube says that for cover tunes, they will only take it down if the copyright owner demands it. Otherwise, YouTube will just monetize it by showing a little ad at the bottom of the video that you can click on to close. A cover tune doesn't count as one of your three strikes to lose your YouTube account.

They'll be more upset if you have a video that uses copyrighted video footage (for example, a scene from Avatar) even if it is your own song playing as a soundtrack. Or if you use the original artist's recording, which the artist wants people to go out and buy.

uke_rob
09-16-2011, 09:33 AM
Daily Motion was hit recently by the music rights people and a lot (but not all) disappeared.

OldePhart
09-16-2011, 12:21 PM
I thought that so long as you weren't making money from it, that basically it was OK?

Common misconception but very untrue.

John

OldePhart
09-16-2011, 12:27 PM
I had two of my videos flagged for copyright violation. Problem is they were both public domain hymns. I filled out the available form saying they weren't copyrighted materials. Never heard another word about it.

Yeah, sometimes people will try to own something that ain't theirs. One artist who shall remain nameless tried (may still be trying) to "enforce" his copyright of House of the Rising Sun. Kind of ballsy considering that there were published references to it dating from the 19th century! When a song is in pubic domain, artists can copyright a performance of the song, they can't copyright the song itself.

A lot of hymn book publishers attempt to copyright a hymn or an arrangement of a hymn, when in fact all their copyright applies to is the collection of hymns (i.e. the book itself, not the content of an individual page where the arrangement on that page has fallen into public domain).

John

itsme
09-16-2011, 01:15 PM
A lot of hymn book publishers attempt to copyright a hymn or an arrangement of a hymn, when in fact all their copyright applies to is the collection of hymns (i.e. the book itself, not the content of an individual page where the arrangement on that page has fallen into public domain).
Actually, a publisher can claim copyright on their typographic layout of individual pieces that are in the public domain, not just the book itself, as it is then "their arrangement" of notes on the page.

This comes up in classical quite a bit. There's a vast amount of CG music that falls under PD and is freely available for download from sources like the Boije Collection or the Royal Danish Library.

Now, it seems like in the early days of printed music the trend was to save paper and cram as many notes as possible on a page. Nowadays it seems the trend is to spread it out and give you more pages per $, making it a better perceived value. Not to mention that IMHO, judicious use of "white space" on a page makes it easier to read even if the notes are the same.

But when it comes to a live or recorded performance, it could be impossible to tell if it were played from a PD source or a fancy-schmancy new "copyrighted" edition, since the notes may be exactly the same.