· COPYRIGHTS ·
Copyrights - Music
In order to manufacture compact discs, audio cassettes, or any other media product you must be the creator or owner of the material, or you must have the permission of the creator/publisher.
If you want to obtain permission to record a cover version of a song, you should start with the Harry Fox Agency in the USA. In Canada check out the CMRRA or SODRAC.
These organisations administer copyrights for their members and they will help you obtain a "mechanical license" that will permit you to legally record and make copies of the songs upon payment of the license fee. The fee in the USA is usually 9.1 cents $US per song under 5 minutes, per copy pressed, with a minimum charge of $45.50. Similar rates apply in Canada.
If you want to use someone else's original recording, you must contact the owner of the sound recording. If you are making a short-run fan product you may be able to get a free license by contacting the owner/publisher.
Samples - Protect yourself!
If you include a small sample of someone else's recording, you should and must obtain their permission. If you wait until that person's lawyer contacts you, you really don't have much negotiating power.
So please download your Copyright Declaration and Undertaking to Indemnify , sign it, and send it back to us with your order.
You must also supply us with copies of your licensing agreements if you are using other people's songs. There will be delays in your order otherwise. Also include a signed paragraph stating the ownership of the material and a track listing with songwriter/composer and publisher of each song, as shown here:
I, John Doe, am the songwriter and publisher of all songs on this CD, with the exception of the song "Irish Rovers" which is public domain with my arrangement,
Please note you may forfeit all or part of your deposit for submitting works that you do not have the rights to, depending on the amount of work performed.
Origin of a sound recording
Most US states have a law that your product must be identified with your complete address.
Many customers are including products like Acrobat Reader, Quicktime Player, Macromedia Director player, Internet Explorer, Netscape, etc... on their CD-ROMs. It is ultimately YOUR responsibility to sign a contract with those companies and to meet their licensing requirements. Some of the license requirements are a burden! Read the contracts before you make your final master and artwork. There may be delays in your order if you do not supply proof of licensing.
Usually you must include logos from those companies whose products you are using. These logos and conditions of using them may change without notice. Ultimately YOU must tell your graphic designer and us what logo and what colors to use.
Copyrights - Artwork and Photos
You must also have licenses for any artwork or photos you take from someone else, even an internet site.
You may also wish to review the Standard Terms and Conditions of Sale, which are basically standard policies of the industry that you should be familiar with.