The Connection Between IP and Labor

By: Ian McClure
wipo_logo

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) today announced a partnership with the International Federation of Musicians (FIM) and the International Federation of Actors (FIA) to improve recognition and treatment of musicians and actors internationally.  Specifically, the agreement seeks to address the recognition of these workers' rights in developing countries, and especially with regard to their intellectual property rights.  From a WIPO press release today: The agreement highlights the connection between IP and labor and the special concerns of cultural workers from the viewpoint ... Read More

Categories: Copyright Caucus

Music Industry Targets Online Lyrics, and a Summary of the Music Industy’s Fragmented Business Model

By: Ian McClure
nmpa

The music industry's next bone to pick with content users and downloaders seems to be online lyrics, published on sites that aggregate this content for users.  The National Music Publishers Association has filed a copyright infringement suit against two companies that publish lyrics online for profit.  One of the companies is owned by MySpace co-founder Brad Greenspan.  To be honest, I didn't really see this one coming.  There are plenty of sites that publish lyrics for free, and so maybe I underestimated the ... Read More

Categories: Copyright Caucus

Michael Jackson’s Additional Legacy: IP Assets

By: Ian McClure
michaeljackson

At a time when Michael Jackson was at the height of his entertainment career, and therefore his  bargaining power with his record label, entertainment attorney John Branca negotiated a deal for Jackson that only acts like Ray Charles and Madonna have been able to duplicate: Jackson receives half of all profits from U.S. music sales (most artists get none) and a whopping 25% royalty rate on all sales (many artists get none, the best get 3% to 10%). These, however, are not ... Read More

Categories: Copyright Caucus

Documentary - Lawrence Lessig, copyright, and remix culture

By: Ian McClure
user_photo_opensourcecinema156

I'm a little late on this one, but in case you missed it: This documentary film was forwarded to me by my father, a professor/academician/scholar/ and self-pronounced egghead who specializes in the relationships between philosophy, theology, ethics, popular culture and preaching.  The film, a product of Open Source Cinema, is called "RiP: A remix Manifesto", and touts itself as  . . . an open source documentary about copyright and remix culture. Created over a period of six years, the film features the collaborative remix work ... Read More

Categories: Copyright Caucus

Can You Copyright a Tweet? (continued from Broken Symmetry)

By: Ian McClure
twitter_icons_256

Michael Martin raises an interesting question on his Broken Symmetry blog, and one that I just couldn't pass up: Are Tweets Copyrightable?. Just last week, a Wall Street Journal article announced a business plan to monetize the popularity of Twitter, which means people now have an incentive to own their tweets, or at least control them exclusively.  The question of copyrightability in this context comes down to whether a tweet is copyrightable subject matter.  To this end, Martin writes the following: That depends. The ... Read More

Categories: Copyright Caucus

Google Commences Online Music Service in China

By: Ian McClure
china-flag2

This has been in the works for a long time.  Today, Google and over 100 record labels broke a lot of barriers, both cultural and legal, to start an online music downloading service available only in China.  Negotiations to open the service have been carrying on for years.  Apparently, over 100 record labels, including the largest (Warner, Sony, EMI, Vivendi) have licensed their music for free download in China.  Ad sales in China will serve as Google's revenue stream. This accomplishment breaks legal barriers, ... Read More

Categories: Today in IP

Music Publishers Not Entitled to Higher Royalty Rate for Digital Downloads

By: Ian McClure
eminem

A Los Angeles jury on Friday found that rapper Eminem's former publisher was not entitled to a higher royalty rate for digital downloads than what it received for traditional sales. The publisher was suing Eminem's record label, Aftermath Records. The case was similar to a string of cases where music publishers have tried to prove that a digital download is akin to a license rather than a traditional sale. Royalty rates for traditional sales are set at a standard rate (mechanical rate) ... Read More

Categories: Today in IP

Internet Radio Services Fail to Reach Deal with Recording Industry

By: Ian McClure
internet_radio_250x251

This past weekend marked the two-year time limit under the Webcasters Settlement Act given to Internet Radio Services such as Pandora to reach a deal with the recording industry on streaming fees.  The deadline came and went without an agreement.  Traditional broadcasting radio stations, which also stream music on their web sites, did reach a deal with record labels (the terms of which I have yet to uncover).  The beef between the internet radio stations and the record labels is mainly over ... Read More

Categories: Copyright Caucus

New Business Model in the Music Industry: Fan-vestors

By: Ian McClure
sellaband_a1

Every once in a while I will read about a business venture that is so business-savvy, yet so simple, I pinch myself for not thinking of it, while applauding the ones who did at the same time. A recent post on IP Finance introduced a new business model that is currently being tested in the music industry. In short, bands and artists are asking their loyal fans (and those that just hear them and think they are good enough to make it) ... Read More

Categories: Burgeoning Business, Copyright Caucus, Investment Intelligence

Nashville’s Copyright Exchange: Packaging Catalogs

By: Ian McClure
black-guitar1

Copyright and music publishers in Nashville have for years adopted and exercised a business model that was created decades ago. That model includes hiring songwriters, or buying the composition right to songs (as opposed to the sound recording right), and marketing those rights to record labels and artists for inclusion in an upcoming album (and the payment of performance and mechanical rights). Transactions in this business have been controlled and channeled by those companies that have been doing it for a long ... Read More

Categories: Burgeoning Business, Copyright Caucus

Warning: Unknown: open(/home/content/55/3688955/tmp/sess_94ijmp1u60umtjom6jdn85sv72, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in Unknown on line 0

Warning: Unknown: Failed to write session data (files). Please verify that the current setting of session.save_path is correct () in Unknown on line 0