Copyright

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TOMMY PHILLIPS

Copyright

Post by TOMMY PHILLIPS » Tue Jul 20, 2004 7:28 pm

HI, I'm making a film/documentry and was wondering what the laws are on
1. The t-shirts we wear (Logo's, designers etc)
2. Music, if the musics in the background or on a radio, then what???
What about singing karaoke?? Copyright

Any help would be wicked.

Dave Watterson

Re: Copyright

Post by Dave Watterson » Tue Jul 20, 2004 10:08 pm

"TOMMY PHILLIPS" <forums@theiac.org.uk> wrote:
HI, I'm making a film/documentry and was wondering what the laws are on
1. The t-shirts we wear (Logo's, designers etc)
2. Music, if the musics in the background or on a radio, then what???
What about singing karaoke?? Copyright

Any help would be wicked.
Hi Tommy,

I'm no great expert on the tricky field of copyright, but as I understand
it most visuals which appear in public are fair game if they appear casually
in your movie - in the background or just as a piece of clothing. But if
you really make a feature of it, so that it becomes a key part of the movie
... then you should either get the designer's agreement or design your own
things. (T-shirt printing is one of the things computers are useful for!)

Strictly speaking ALL music is possibly subject to copyright. TV shows have
to clear the music if someone in the background just whistles a tune. Once
again I would say that if it happens casually in an amateur movie no one
would mind, but if it is really used as part of the film then you should
clear it. IAC has a simple copyright clearance scheme for music ... details
are elsewhere on this website (www.theiac.org.uk).

Oddly enough karaoke is probably also subject to copyright ... the makers
of the karaoke disc/cd will have cleared it for public singing, but not for
recording on film or tape.

So it is a pain. BUT there are fairly straightforward ways to clear music
rights (see above).

The best approach is to make your own designs and music if you can. There
are lots of musicians keen to have a go at movie music who would do it just
for a name-check on the credits and a free copy of the finished movie.

Cheers

Dave

Cinema For Thurso Group

Re: Copyright

Post by Cinema For Thurso Group » Tue Jul 20, 2004 10:08 pm

Are you an IAC member, do you have the copyright licenses that IAC offers
under it's copyright clearence scheme. MCPS, BPI and PPL licenses are available
to cover most areas of sound recording on amateur film. If you are a member
or join the IAC this can help you to a large degree. All told it's somewhere
about £35 for membership and licenses- quite a bargain I'd say.
Logo's on t-shirts and the like is an interesting question but (and I'm
no expert) news teams don't cover logos in news footage. If it's in the shot
so be it. If a logo forms part of the natural enviroment including clothing
I've never known it to require copyright concent in documentary coverage.
If it was part of a costume for a story production then you would be wise
to ask. Incidentally Coca Cola don't mind (I did ask them) having their products
emblazened upon the screen- free advertising they call it! Barr's soft drinks
are ok with Irn Bru as well.

As for your music whether it be karaoke or a radio in the background, if
you are in posetion of the relevant IAC copyright licenses then I suggest
you mix your soundtrack to simulate the presence of karaoke playback and
radio sound.
Have a look at the IAC main page, there's a heading there somewhere for
copyright information and you can email them directly for more intricate
detail.

Baz

Re: Copyright

Post by Baz » Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:08 pm

If it was part of a costume for a story production then you would be wise
to ask. Incidentally Coca Cola don't mind (I did ask them) having their
products
emblazened upon the screen- free advertising they call it! Barr's soft drinks
are ok with Irn Bru as well.
I'm sure Coca-Cola would mind if someone drunk a can of their product and
then promptly threw up!

The IAC copyright agreements (or perhaps its the Musicians Union performers
clearance)
state that you aren't allowed to put the name of the band
or artist in credits or titles. It seems they are more bothered about bad
publicity than
good!

Baz

Cinema For Thurso Group

Re: Copyright

Post by Cinema For Thurso Group » Wed Jul 21, 2004 6:07 pm

I'm sure Coca-Cola would mind if someone drunk a can of their product and
then promptly threw up!
Well like I said I did and they were happy and if anyone was sick (although
I can't imagine how that might happen) well that could be cut out.

The IAC copyright licenses only cover clearance for recording onto
your film. For performance you still need to contact the Musicians Union
with details of the tracks contained on your film for their approval. Apparently
they haven't been know to object. And rightly (or strangely) the artists
are not to be credited on your film. That in some cases makes for very short
titles and of the few people that read them, they are often looking to see
who wrote the music, what it's called and what label to find it on. One might
have thought it would be a good thing for the music business to allow credits
on amateur films. Whether the amateur film is ace or pants it can't rubbish
quality music and in any case even a bad movie can make a good music track
stick in the mind to the extent that the person wants to buy it. They say
you can always make a good trailer out of a crap film.

Nigel

Re: Copyright

Post by Nigel » Sat Jul 31, 2004 5:56 pm

The t-shirt logo thing is fine if it is just casual and happens to be there,
it's kind of public domain. A friend of mine who has his own production company
had to film on a public street once, they didn't have to close it down, but
they did need a permit from the council. To get around the copyright issue
of people in this film they put up a sign at either end of the street, which
read "By walking down this street and into the line of camera you are giving
us permission to use your image in this film", apparently this is legal.

The music thing, forget it, if there is music playing on a radio in the background
you will need to pay and get a licence from both the MCPS and the PRS and
in some cases the record company too, this is because some bands have very
strict policy on this, take Nirvana for instance, Kirt Cobain's wife Cortney
Love has banned anyone and everyone from ever using Nirvana's songs for any
reason whatsoever, she will sue you and take away your house and family if
you even think about it.

Do it the correct way, you would be surprised just how cheap it actually
is, well of course if you are called Quinton Tarentino and want to use a
famous song in your Hollywood feature it will cost you approximately £2000
for every 30 seconds of the song that you use, if on the other hand you approach
the MCPS and tell them that it is a student film which will only be shown
to other students, the tutor and a few close friends i.e. it won’t be sold,
then it will only cost you about £80 for every 30 seconds of the song, then
if it looks like it will win a major festival and get picked up by Warners,
then they will foot the bill and it won’t be your problem anyway.

Back to the Karaoke thing, not only would you have to pay the folk who made
the vocal-free version, you also have to pay the original artist who wrote
the song and believe it or now, the fat cow on stage that sounds like a strangled
cat who is actually singing the god awful rendition also has to be paid,
after all this is her voice and she will probably sue you if she ever sees
the film and recognises her dodgy version of “I will always love you”.

More details:

http://www.mcps.co.uk/

It will tell you everything you need to know, they are really nice and helpful
people if you just explain what you want, work out which song you want and
get all the details of that song i.e. which record label owns it, band, track
title, track duration, writer of the song (Writer: K. Cobain, Track: Come
as you are, Album: Never Mind, Duration: 3:12, Year: 1995) they will need
all this information, they will also need to know just how much of the track
you are going to be using i.e. 27 seconds from the middle section, it is
very unusual for an entire track to feature in a film or programme, think
the Café in Eastenders, you will notice that the music you hear in the background
never continues for more than 20 seconds or it cost them more, same goes
for the Queen Vic.

The only exception to this of course is our man Tarentino, think Res Dogs
and the warehouse scene with “Stuck in the Middle with you” you know, when
the cop is getting his ear cut off, but like I said it’s very rare and if
you phone the MCPS and simply say “Well the whole track actually” they won’t
take you seriously, they will expect you to have already edited the film
and know to the exact frame how much of the song you will be using.

Hope this all helps.

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