COMPOSERs, PUBLISHERs and PROs, Oh my!

  • ErickMcNerney avatar
    ErickMcNerney 2 Aug 2013 09:41
    I have 1 question, can I register my tracks through BMI they I have not officially copyrighted them?
  • liftedCREATION avatar
    liftedCREATION 2 Sep 2013 15:58
    Dear AudioAftermath,

    Copyrighting is something you gain as soon as you "record" your music or lyrics to something tangible. Like a tape, harddrive, cd, dvd, a napkin...once you write it down or make a recording, it's basically yours...

    Humming a tune and then trying to sue over it won't hold up in court...your 1970's recording of you humming, will.

    Now. You will want to copyright your songs as soon as you can. Generally if your going to get your music placed in TV or Film it's a fraction of the money you will be receiving in royalties.

    You can also copyright your tracks much later...I believe, after you lease your track for broadcast, you have a year to get it copyrighted. This is important because once your music track goes over seas, ie...there is National Broadcasting, then Global Broadcasting...This is where you want "LEGAL RIGHTS", anyway...

    To straight up answer your question, Yes, you can register your tracks with your PRO before you are legally granted copyright holder. Once you record it or write it down, you own the copyrights...but they are limited.

    I hope this helps answer your question. Sorry it's a bit late, I am all over the place lately.

    Take care and good luck!

    Nathan

    P.S. I just redid my website if you want to take a look - http://www.liftedCREATION.com
  • ErickMcNerney avatar
    ErickMcNerney 10 Sep 2013 09:25
    much appreciated! Thanks!
  • liftedCREATION avatar
    liftedCREATION 31 Jan 2014 17:28
    Dear pond5,

    When I sat down to write this topic I had no idea that some of you would actually read it. Amazing, I thank you. I have been receiving e-mails and questions ever since, to which I try to give insight, however, you need to go look this stuff up for yourself. Really, why take my word? I am just like you, I read the Terms and Conditions and took a few on-line courses just to make sure I had all this info correct. And when I say "read" I mean....READ! Seriously, try explaining the terms and conditions here at pond5 to someone. Do you even know what it says? If you said, no, go read it...

    I urge you all to read every single word in these "contracts" you are digitally signing, don't just scroll to the bottom as if you know...Each marketplace is different and it's up to all of us to know exactly what is going on. Read, read, read...make sure you KNOW what it says and then explain it to your best friend, at any point, if you stumble at your explanation... Go back and read some more.

    The best thing I did was try to hash this stuff out right here in this topic, I read all the terms and conditions and took extra courses on the side to make sure, and now I know exactly what I need to do to make a career out of music. It's a simple matter of "doing" at this point.

    Lately I have been making music, not to lease, but to listen too...Crazy I know. I dropped the "idea" that my music is for sale and just started making music that I think sounds good and is interesting to me.

    Here is how it all went down, for 7 years I made jingles and tunes and added them to every stock music site I could find...I sold a couple here and there but didn't know lick about the music business. So, I learned about the music business (there is still so much to cover but...) That was my 2013 experience, learn the music business, not make music, just learn what I am supposed to be doing instead of guessing...hence this post. Then for the last 6 months I have been learning how to Mix and Master my music. Because, after it is all said and done, making music is an "art". It's takes a certain creative juice to make it flow. My 7 years of making music were simply that, I was just making music, no foresight, no knowledge, just trying, and then it all hit me last year..

    I am doing this all wrong. I am never going to make a career switch by uploading my hobby music to all these sites...it's not going to happen. I need to learn how to do this, not just take a stab in the dark. It's easier to hit a target when you can see it. Anyways...So, I took another course on how to master music. And what a difference!

    I am self taught, no schooling or anything, didn't go to college, so any info I can find, I adsorb like a sponge and one thing to learn is how to make your music sound good. Hmm, maybe that should be my next topic. Mixing and Mastering.

    Anyhow, if you want to listen to some of my music that, isn't for sale or lease, head over to my site liftedCREATION

    I have spent most of my time not worrying about the "money" and focused on the general reaction from people that are listening. I can say for a fact, that everything I made for "production purposes" didn't go over well with listeners...the stuff I am making to melt your face off and blow your house apart...IS. Plus I learned a lot about mixing and mastering, oh and I redid my studio, grabbed some new monitors (speakers for those that don't have a good pair of near-field monitors)...if you don't know what I am talking about...you better start reading.

    Know how to set up your room acoustically? Know where your monitors need to be to hear the sweet spot? Do you know at what level you should be mixing and mastering your music? Know how to A-B a track, also known as checker-boarding? The list goes on and on. All this I learned and it really helped. I can just tell from the response I get now from people, they are liking what they hear. Which is great news for me.

    Anyways, I hope you all had a great year, and piles of money showed up at your door...Me, I run another business and make a fine living from it so this music gig is like...my future goal, not exactly "what I am doing now"...I love making music, and selling it and sharing but all in all I really don't need to. It's more of a prospect if anything, what I want to be doing in 5 years if you will...

    So, if you are new to the music business I urge you to goto page one of this post and read it. Then e-mail me here at pond5 or nls@liftedcreation.com and I will try my best to answer any questions or point to someone that knows the answer. Try to keep in mind I am not selling you anything, I really don't want your money nor need it, I just want to state for the record. If you are NOT signed up with a PRO...you might want to reconsider your business goals. Registering with a PRO is the FIRST step...not uploading your music to all the stock media mega sites...that is probably the LAST thing to do on the list.

    Well take it easy everyone. I plan on making some killer tracks to lease but I am in no rush. I need to get my feet planted and walk in the right direction first. Really, if time is money. Stop wasting time!

    With that, I am off to do God knows what, it's Friday, and I have the weekend off! WOOT!

    Sinicerly,

    Nathan Luis Steinke
    liftedCREATION
  • tarzanbf avatar
    tarzanbf 5 Jul 2014 19:54
    Hi Nathan, i love your passion. And so many have learned from you. I am a buyer, first time. I want to use a $20 piece of music on a radio spot. Do I have permission? I have never sold on radio before and this is my first time driving people to my website to sell my video DVDs of my original work. I don't want trouble or lawsuits or to not pay anything due the artist. The agreement is understandable only to lawyers. Please let me know if I can pay $20 and put it in the background of my radio spot and not be in any infringement conflict. Thank you, Tarzanbf
  • liftedCREATION avatar
    liftedCREATION 14 Jul 2014 16:27
    Hello Tarzanbf,

    I believe that is the whole idea. http://www.pond5.com/legal/license (link to the legal stuff)

    In section 3. Grant of License, section a.

    "We hereby grant you a non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual right and license (the "License") on the terms and subject to the conditions and limitations set out in this Agreement, to, an unlimited number of times: (i) use, couple and synchronize the Content in a Work For Distribution and create Works for Distribution incorporating the Content, (ii) copy, use, modify, publicly display and perform, publish, transmit, broadcast, telecast, and distribute such Works for Distribution and permit third parties to do the same, provided that the provisions of this Agreement regarding Content are complied with by Licensee and such third parties, and (iii) use the Content Information internally to facilitate the foregoing."

    -- That to me says you can broadcast your radio spot...now

    in 4. Restrictions of Use, section b.

    "You may not use, modify, resell, sublicense, assign, transfer, otherwise make available or permit access by any third Person to any Content, except as expressly authorized in this Agreement."

    Also.
    4. section d.

    "You may not: (i) sell or license Unincorporated Content to others for consumption, reproduction or re-sale or (ii) superficially modify any Unincorporated Content and sell or license it to others for consumption, reproduction or re-sale. For example, you may not (A) resell Unincorporated Content that is a video as a screensaver or desktop background, (B) sell or license an image extracted from Content to be printed on tee-shirts or other physical products for resale, or (C) print Unincorporated Content or an image extracted from Content on tee-shirts or other physical products for sale."

    -- This is me says you can't "SELL" your radio spot. Meaning you can't lease a 20$ track and "sell it" as a $500 radio spot. You can broadcast it for the rest of your life. ("... non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual right and license...") but you can't turn around and sell the content.

    Hope that helps you out, have a great week!


    Nathan Luis Steinke