Legalities of DJ-ing with Music Bought Online
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  1. #1
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    Default Legalities of DJ-ing with Music Bought Online

    Hey guys,

    I was just reading the terms of service for a lot of online music purchase services such as Itunes, Verizon Rhapsody, Amazon mp3...

    All of them have the line "only for personal, noncommercial, entertainment use"

    Does this mean tracks i purchase i purchase from these services cannot be used in a paid gig?

    Or am i missing something here?

    Also, as a side note, do people here generally use music subscription services? if so, which ones?
    Last edited by faeruithir; 11-26-2009 at 08:05 PM.

  2. #2
    DJTT Moderator Dude Jester's Avatar
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    Technically you cant play any track in a commercial situation without permission from the copyright holder. We've had some cases here in nz where cafes have been done for playing a bloody cd to the customers.
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  3. #3

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    Technically any media that you buy, whether its a CD, DVD, VHS or whatever is almost always labeled as "for personal use only not for public boradcast or performance" or words to that effect.

    I've heard of cases of people getting hassle for playing videos/DVDs in public but not music, at least in this copyright sense.

    On the flipside though there is a company called PRS (Performing Rights Society) in the UK and similar in other countries who's job it is to monitor any music that is performed in public, whether pre recorded, TV/Radio or covers of songs played live. They collect money from radio stations, TV stations, bars and clubs, cafes, and any other business that plays music to the public, and then distributes the money to the artists.

    Although I don't know NZ law i would guess it is for not paying this that they have been done. They can be pretty brutal in the UK, and i have heard stories of them even going after work places such as warehouses where they have a radio playing in the work area but because it can be heard faintly in a reception or waiting room they deem that as public performance. (Even though the radio station is ALSO paying a shit load of money for it on their end as well, which i think is a bit messed up!)

    k

  4. #4
    RGAS Guru Xonetacular's Avatar
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    Bottom line is don't worry about it, every DJ does it and no one is going to hassle you.


  5. #5

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    I have always wondered about this! Do Dj's need to literally pay royalties? Like if DJ AM went and played a massive gig and played a shit ton of songs he would have to pay royalties on all of them? Is there a rule that as long as you play like less than 30 seconds or alter it enough or something you don't need to pay?

  6. #6

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    wouldn't it be easy to argue fair use while mixing songs. I see it no different than an author citing quotes from another writer for use of his own material

  7. #7
    Tech Guru josh@firestorm's Avatar
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    here in australia shops and cafes and such pay an annual fee (not sure how much or how its scaled) to broadcast recorded music and radio stations... and clubs pay around 20c a head to the recording industry's sanctioned watchdog for what they play/their dj's play in the clubs

  8. #8
    Tech Wizard deepstereo's Avatar
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    It's interesting, how they distribute the money then? Every dj plays different artists and it's not like they collect track listings, is it?

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by atticus18244fsas View Post
    I have always wondered about this! Do Dj's need to literally pay royalties? Like if DJ AM went and played a massive gig and played a shit ton of songs he would have to pay royalties on all of them? Is there a rule that as long as you play like less than 30 seconds or alter it enough or something you don't need to pay?
    Someone has to pay Usually it'll be the promoter/owner/organiser if its a one off event, or if its a regular venue like a club, bar, cafe etc then as someone said its done by an annual fee.

    Quote Originally Posted by deepstereo
    Every dj plays different artists and it's not like they collect track listings, is it?
    LOL yes it is, actually I've had to do it twice now over the years.

    It happens in two ways, for big organisations like radio stations they have to provide a detailed breakdown of EVERYTHING they play right to the very second, and the money gets sent out accordingly. For smaller places like bars/clubs etc they have people who's job it is to stand in the DJ box with you and literally copy down your track list for the night. As I said i've done it twice now. They then average out all of these sample clubs and then divide up all of the money as a ratio based on this sample.

    Obviously its just luck of the draw if your song happens to get played on one of the sampled nights, and also this system favors mainstream music a lot more than unusual or underground stuff as this is likely to be played in more venues and hence have a higher ratio within the sampled playlists, but there isn't really an alternative

    It would either come down to relying on every club/pub/DJ/cafe/office/doctors waiting room/post office/dentist etc etc to accurately send in playlists every day which wont happen, or station a person in every one of these places to copy down track listings which again wont happen

    k

  10. #10
    Tech Guru Ciar2001's Avatar
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    Well i just called one of my oldest friends he works for the PRS up the westend, he said clubs technically should have a guy there checking playlists so they can work out how to split the fees correctly, he also said clubs will pay a one of yearly fee, but for instance if they have a special night, and the playlist is different then again have to pay a fee, that's straight from the horses mouth my mate is a manager there been there for over 10 years, always funny the things they have to pay out 1p here 20p there lol.

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