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Senate Bill Could Make It Illegal To Upload Lip-Synced Videos

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the numa-numa-no-more dept.

Government 239

An anonymous reader writes "According to Copyright lawyer Ben Sidbury, Senate bill 978 could make it a criminal act for someone to lip sync to a song and post the said video on Youtube, even if credits are given. 'The way the statute is written... It would now criminalize anybody that performs a copyrighted work, which is essentially nowadays any song under the sun. In theory at least, the record companies or the Department of Justice could go after a 9-year old or a 12 year old or a 30 year old for publicly performing a song.' said Sidbury."

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Great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454084)

Pretty soon I won't be able to smoke or sing in my car!

Re:Great! (1)

Barrinmw (1791848) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454094)

The next step is probably to ban all lip synching or otherwise singing along with a song.

Re:Great! (1)

pjbgravely (751384) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454192)

Read the bill. [e-lobbyist.com] It sounds like all public performance including singing in your car would be made illegal. That is if the copyright holder can prove $2,500 in losses.

Re:Great! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454250)

Why don't you read the bill retard, or at least your own post. Singing in your car is neither public nor a performance and most certainly doesn't fit the bills explicit requirement of "10 or more public performances by electronic means, during any 180-day period".

Re:Great! (1)

pjbgravely (751384) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454312)

I don't normally respond to cowards but this one is correct. I miss read "and" and for an "or". Thankfully I am not a lawyer.

Re:Great! (0)

amiga3D (567632) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454566)

You still shouldn't respond to the bastard. People that hide behind anon just so they can belittle others don't deserve any recognition or respect. Right or wrong, Fuck him.

Re:Great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454682)

no...fuck YOU!!!

Re:Great! (1)

amiga3D (567632) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454706)

hehe...stay anonymous there...coward. :)

Re:Great! (1)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454260)

Shouldn't be hard for them. Nowadays they'll even claim a trillion dollars of damages if you let someone else listen to an MP3 you bought online.

Re:Great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454416)

They will? Please cite. Thanks :)

Maybe one day I too will get to indulge in jerking off over hating something so much I lie and exaggerate just to make myself angrier about it

Re:Great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454512)

Relax, it's not a lie, just a adynaton [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454236)

Heck, for the way things are going, in 5 years they would patent words, and sue you for speaking in public. America is killing all the fun.

Re:Great! (1)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454342)

Newspeak 2.0

Re:Great! (2, Informative)

Moryath (553296) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454354)

Didn't Trump try to trademark "You're fired"?

Didn't Disney try to trademarn "Seal Team 6"?

Government of the corporations, bought by the corporations, fuck the people. Current agenda: Koch brothers buying out governors everywhere. Scott Walker is open for busine^h^h^h^h^h^bribery.

Re:Great! (1)

Schadrach (1042952) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454662)

My home state had a stint where "Open for business" was an official slogan for the state, and was on all the highway signs at the borders. I much preferred the previous "Wild and Wonderful", they could even have gone back to our actual state motto for the signs, or a translation thereof: "Montani semper liberi" -- Mountaineers are always free.

Re:Great! (1)

Racemaniac (1099281) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454124)

keep a cellphone nearby, and if they see you sing, pretend you're making a call. You'll get off cheaper i think :)

Re:Great! (1)

Dan Dankleton (1898312) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454444)

<evilRIAA> You're performing for an audience? That'll be extra then! </evilRIAA>

Re:Great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454410)

There are now several places in North America where it is illegal to smoke in your car if children are present.

Re:Great! (2)

trum4n (982031) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454506)

That's actually a good idea.

sigh... (5, Insightful)

wired57 (1901846) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454098)

Whatever happened to fair use? I mean really come on now, how does this help protect anything?

Re:sigh... (2, Insightful)

flibuste (523578) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454486)

It helps your government avoiding YOU spreading culture around, thus keeping people dumb and low so they can control them more easily. And keep their election campaign funds topped off with bribes from the RIAA and other "Copyright holders"?
I mean, a 12 year old girl singing the latest Lady Gaga song on her piano is very harmful to major companies, and could make you smile. Last thing your government want is you to be happy without them ordering you to be.
Or am I too much in conspiracy theories lately?

Re:sigh... (1)

bradgoodman (964302) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454782)

Playing the song and singing on a piano? No. Lip syncing to a copyrighted recording? Yes.

Um, this is already illegal... (5, Informative)

langelgjm (860756) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454658)

This is already illegal under copyright law. From what I gather from the article, the "news" is that the bill seeks to criminalize unlicensed public performance of a copyrighted work. The summary is totally misleading. Also, giving "credit" in a YouTube video is irrelevant to whether it's licensed or not. Actually I'm surprised more of these aren't scooped up by YouTube's content filtering system right now.

As for fair use, it'd be a tough case to make, but I guess in theory you could argue that... tough because you typically use the whole song, but that's mitigated by the fact that it's non-commercial use, and hardly a replacement - people don't listen to YouTube lip-syncs instead of the original...

I think criminalization of unauthorized public performance is probably a bad idea in general, even if not applied to lip-syncing kids... but don't let the summary fool you, this isn't suddenly making things that are currently legal illegal.

Re:Um, this is already illegal... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454752)

yeah ... but it is turning a regulatory violation into a criminal act ...

Re:sigh... (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454696)

Whatever happened to fair use? I mean really come on now, how does this help protect anything?

Maybe the senators got tired of searching for the music video they were looking for, then getting some american idol reject singing into a webcam that they're sitting too close to. Because I've been annoyed by that before. I wouldn't want to -legislate- that away, and whenever record companies win, we lose, but we don't appear to be losing that much with this.

Hmm... along those same lines, the frat house across the street playing shitty music so loud that I can hear it at 2 am from across the street when I have to get up in the morning is definitely a public performance that the RIAA, ASCAP, and senate should crack down on...

Re:sigh... (4, Informative)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454702)

Lip-syncing is fair use?

Lip-syncing is using the exact recording someone else made, over a picture of you making no sound and maybe dancing funny with your pets.

Fair use would be excerpting a line or two of the original recording, or singing a verse or two as part of a larger work, or parodying it with different lyrics or music, although there are exceptions to this for things like using sound clips in movies or sampling in records where there's huge money involved, or where it's clear you're leveraging the work for profit without adding much to it yourself.

I don't think that playing most or all of someone else's recording as the primary basis for your work is fair use. You can't change something slightly and call it "derivative," either. You can't even steal the hook accidentally and claim it's not someone else's property. Just ask George Harrison. No, he isn't; Beatles never really die.

Re:sigh... (2)

durnurd (967847) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454832)

Numa numa [youtube.com]

Thank you Senate (5, Insightful)

PickyH3D (680158) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454104)

For really going after what is a problem in our country.

Not the job market.
Not the national debt.
Not the continued housing crisis.
Not any of the three wars we are actively participating in (Libya, Iraq (yes, still), and Afghanistan).
Not healthcare.
Not the tax system.

Nope, it's little kids or adults showing their support for artists by lip syncing. We really have to protect those artists from such stealing! Those poor, underpaid artists (and their leeches that lobby for them, AKA the RIAA).

Re:Thank you Senate (1)

ryants (310088) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454184)

Not any of the three wars we are actively participating in (Libya, Iraq (yes, still), and Afghanistan).

You forgot Yemen.

(Read the above in Bush's voice)

Re:Thank you Senate (1)

Sooner Boomer (96864) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454666)

Not any of the three wars we are actively participating in (Libya, Iraq (yes, still), and Afghanistan).
You forgot Yemen.
(Read the above in Bush's voice)

Ya fergot Bosnia, Y'all always ferget Bosnia.
(Read the above in Clinton's voice)

Re:Thank you Senate (1)

drpimp (900837) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454224)

Mod Parent Up * 1000000

Re:Thank you Senate (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454242)

They would try and fix those, but you have to remember that we still have Nobama in the White House. And he's going to veto anything that's passed that will actually help any of the things you listed.

Things like copyright enforcement, on the other hand? Obama owes his election to media companies, and they still intend to collect on their part of the bargain.

Both parties are ultimately ruled by Big Media. It's what they've got in common, and it's what they can agree on. It's what they use to ensure that no voter will ever see a third party candidate in the news.

So, yes, while we've got obstructionists in the White House preventing any real hope and change, about all Congress has left that they can actually do is beef up copyright laws. It's not like their constituents actually care about them, after all.

But their campaign donators, THEY care about this. It's what they're paying them for, after all.

Re:Thank you Senate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454418)

They would try and fix those, but you have to remember that we still have Nobama in the White House. And he's going to veto anything that's passed that will actually help any of the things you listed.

That's right, because clearly Obama is actually the trickster god Loki whose only goal is to cause and prolong problems.

The world isn't as black and white as your compartmentalized worldview suggests

Re:Thank you Senate (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454588)

"Both parties are ultimately ruled by Big Corporations" There fixed that for you.

No's are getting thrown from each side, not to mention the context of your usage of "Nobama" is not how people I have heard use it. Their usage is simply "We don't want him in office". Btw, pass me some of that you're smoking. Also

Re:Thank you Senate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454600)

Funny. I was thinking we more had obstructionists in the House, holding up the passing of anything to fix the economy while screaming "Nobama" and "get that muzlim nigger outta the whitey house before he takes my gunz away."

Then again, what do I know. I just actually pay attention to more than the Rush Limbaugh Daily Brainwashing Show and Morning Two Minutes Hate [google.com] Talk Radio.

Re:Thank you Senate (1)

Moe Taxes (304424) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454306)

I've had to see some of these videos and I might have muttered "there ought to be a law." But it's not high on my list either.

Re:Thank you Senate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454324)

If this is covered under Lip Syncing what about Karaoke?

Re:Thank you Senate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454574)

They may not fear the beard but The Machine might go nuclear on their ass!

You think the Senators actually do this? (4, Informative)

istartedi (132515) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454668)

You think the senators actually do this? No way. The lobbyists write the bills for them. You can't leave jobs like that up to politicians. It's too important. You draft the bill, you send it to your lackey... errr... senator's office, with a cover letter extolling the virtues of it. Then your l...senator's staff "reviews this recommended legislation" which means they putz around on their FaceBook pages for a while with the PDF open in the background so they can punch it up in case anybody walks by. Then it gets voted on. That's how it works.

Re:You think the Senators actually do this? (2)

PickyH3D (680158) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454688)

I don't believe that most Senators are smart enough to use Facebook. The rest, I do.

And there's something seriously unnerving about that.

Re:Thank you Senate (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454726)

It does no good to tar the entire government with that accusation.

Single out the cosponsors of this bill when you do that.

And point out the ones who voted against it.

Re:Thank you Senate (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454764)

For really going after what is a problem in our country.

At least when they're focusing on youtube videos, they're not making anything -important- worse.

"To fix the housing crisis, we have passed the 'We love Homeowners' bill: it makes it easier for banks to foreclose on your house and stipulates that if you can't pay off your house, the bank can sell your organs to pay for it. It also will reduce our taxes by saving the courts money: banks now have legal immunity and are not required to prove you owe them money before they foreclose on your house. This bill also approves strip mining in Yosemite national park."

Re:Thank you Senate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454778)

Here's [senate.gov] the Senator who submitted the bill. Is that "working for the people" or wasting time?

Leave Britney Alone (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454106)

Seriously what will all the pop singers do?

ASSCRAP (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454538)

Seriously what will all the pop singers do?

Easy: they will continue to obtain permission from the songwriter and/or publisher to perform the works. The difference is that these publishers are more accustomed to licensing these performance rights to established media corporations rather than to individuals.

Karaoke Kriminalz! (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454112)

Good thing this isn't Japan!

Re:Karaoke Kriminalz! (2)

Denogh (2024280) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454154)

Curses! You beat me to it. I've got no problem with criminalizing Karaoke. There are other elements in the bill that might be bad, but we've got to look for the silver lining here.

pretty much every concert I've ever been to (3, Insightful)

Skarecrow77 (1714214) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454114)

No matter how famous and how many hits the band on stage had, they played at least 1 or 2 cover songs.

Shit like that is why you go see bands live in the first place. Is that illegal now too?

Or has it always been illegal and it's just that nobody gave a damn?

Re:pretty much every concert I've ever been to (1)

tehniobium (1042240) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454158)

I think usually the bands get permission to do cover songs. Or rather, they have their manager do it for them.

Re:pretty much every concert I've ever been to (3, Informative)

QRDeNameland (873957) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454346)

I think usually the bands get permission to do cover songs. Or rather, they have their manager do it for them.

In terms of live performance, virtually all venues have blanket licensing that covers songwriting royalties for any song played in the establishment, either by a soundsystem or by a performing band. So a band can pretty much play any song live without needing permission.

The only time a band needs to be concerned about licensing a cover song is if they release a recording of it.

Re:pretty much every concert I've ever been to (2)

Mass Overkiller (1999306) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454380)

I'm in a band. Technically, if we "sell" our material (CDs, tapes, video, etc) with other people's copy protected work (ie: cover songs) then we must have permission to do so. This occasionally results in the original copyright holders getting a piece of our sales. In reality, our band is not popular enough to have anyone at RIAA (or other bands) care, plus we don't sell our stuff (giveaways). So we don't bother with permission. For popular bands, they need permission and there is usually a financial component to that permission. If you perform live and cover a song (and sell tickets to your live performance) you also need permission (and sometimes financial compensation). Garage and bar bands cover songs all the time. Some bars charge a fee to see the band. This is TECHNICALLY not legal under copyright law. But who is going to sue the Jack Dicks for playing "Freebird" in a biker bar? Most cover music is simply credited to the original writers and that is that. You are allowed under music copyright to play a cover and change it to be something else, as long as you credit the original source. Playing Led Zeppelin's "Black Dog" with an acoustic guitar and crediting yourself as the writer would be illegal under music copyright. Playing the same song and crediting Jimmy Page and Robert Plant would be fine, legally, assuming Led Zeppelin didn't care that you sold your CD and made some money for yourself. Have you heard the announcers on Football games say "this televised broadcast is intended for private use only. Any attempt to rebroadcast or otherwise disseminate this program without the expressed written consent of the NFL is strictly prohibited"? TECHNICALLY, a bar that shows a football game cannot charge you to watch it nor use the football game on TV as an incentive to get you to come to their bar and buy their food or drinks. TECHNICALLY. I don't think the NFL would waste time suing Joe's Shady Bar for promoting the Dolphin's game, but they COULD. If this law were to actually be enacted and enforced, technically playing a cover song would be illegal outright. Technically READING A BOOK OUTLOUD could be construed as a "public performance" and thus be subject to the law. Imagine the feds raiding a kindergarten school and arresting a teacher for reading "My First Day at School" to a bunch or 5 year olds?

Re:pretty much every concert I've ever been to (1)

amiga3D (567632) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454644)

You can pretty much count on it that someone will abuse the law. I'm certain that it's not intended for the average person lip-syncing for his friends on youtube but you can bet some people will get charged by some idiot or other.

Re:pretty much every concert I've ever been to (1)

j_rhoden (214320) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454264)

Somewhere, somebody (venue/ band / management) pays ASCAP or BMI a license fee for the performance, which in turn a portion of is supposed to go to the underlying copyright holder.

Re:pretty much every concert I've ever been to (3, Informative)

Bovius (1243040) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454298)

Ostensibly, bands that play cover songs are supposed to pre-arrange the rights to record or perform said songs with a performance rights organization, and then pay royalties for the performance or pay for a license to record and distribute the song. The PROs make their money off of this, so they can be pretty aggressive about hunting down people who play or perform the music of the copyright holders they represent. The question of who actually pays the fee can get complicated depending on how the music is performed; in a traditional live performance, the location hosting the performance would likely be paying the performance royalty, not the band.

That being said, I'm betting a lot of local performers and garage bands often don't have enough visibility to show up on the radar.

That's how it works, though; legally, you have to pay a fee to get your guitar out and perform a song so common any random stranger could hum the tune along with you.

Re:pretty much every concert I've ever been to (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454320)

No matter how famous and how many hits the band on stage had, they played at least 1 or 2 cover songs.

Shit like that is why you go see bands live in the first place. Is that illegal now too?

Or has it always been illegal and it's just that nobody gave a damn?

http://www.songclearance.com/ [songclearance.com]

This is for recorded performances. About 9 cents per mp3, for example. Overpriced, but simple and straightforward. The simple and straightforward are why I'm using it as an example.

The situation with live performances is waaaaaay more confusing. As my friend the musician drunkenly explained once, the venue (in his case, dive bars) pays ASCAP directly, he does not pay a penny. If he sells a CD of a live performance he gets to pay a second license fee on the recording for each unit sold. I remember this discussion distinctly as he was infuriated about "double taxation" etc. I would assume that if another dive-bar played his already doubly taxed live music CD, they'd get to pay a third time because they own a jukebox.

The recorded performance structure sucks, but the live-cover-recorded performance structure really really sucks.

Hmm, death of karaoke? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454140)

If the law criminalizes PERFORMING a song, might this put an end to karaoke? If so, maybe it's not all bad. ;)

Why stop there? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454152)

Lets make it illegal to read out loud from any copyrighted work... even if you're reading a story to your child as he or she goes to sleep. The child should need to purchase its own copy of the book.

Re:Why stop there? (2)

Volante3192 (953645) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454248)

Goodnight Moon - $18.00
Goodnight Moon with bundled performance license - $180.00

I smell a marketing scheme!!

Nothing New (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454156)

This is already a violation of copyright. As is taping a wedding dance. As is singing "Happy Birthday" in public or on tape. Contrary to public opinion, you do not need to make money to violate copyright law. You only need to capture any non-public domain song on any recordable medium, or "perform" it in public, and you've broken copyright law. It's so ridiculous, that violation has become common - and real law violators (people who download music) get away with it. The law needs to be changed to allow common use, while punishing pirates and those who actually are causing damage.

Civil vs. Criminal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454302)

You are correct in that this is already against copyright law. And if you do it, you are in danger of getting a civil lawsuit against you.

But this new thing would make it a *criminal* offense, where the police slap the handcuffs on you and toss you in prison. Completely different.

Re:Nothing New (1)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454392)

while punishing pirates and those who actually are causing damage.

Funny how there's a distinction between pirates and those that actually cause damage.

Dear Senator Sidbutt: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454160)

With me, sing [youtube.com] along.

C for Corrupt. M for Moron. F for Fail.

Yours in Dagestan,
Kilgore Trout

Re:Dear Senator Sidbutt: (1)

amiga3D (567632) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454686)

That's one strange bunch of clowns.

Well how long (1, Troll)

Dyinobal (1427207) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454162)

Well how long till a Cop er I mean a department of Homeland security agent pulls me over for singing to a song I've on my Mp3 hooked up to my car stereo on my way to work. Because that's the direction this is going.

Damn... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454166)

No more Numa Numa

Let me guess ... is prince is behind it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454172)

Given his history on covers and far use, it wouldn't surprise me.
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/prince-wants-laws-changed-eliminate-181477
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/blogs/thr-esq/documents-show-prince-crazy-youtube-63454

CC-SA? (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454178)

The way the statute is written... It would now criminalize anybody that performs a copyrighted work, which is essentially nowadays any song under the sun.

I'm mystified how this works with a copyrighted song released under a CC-SA license that explicitly permits that soon to be criminal act...

Re:CC-SA? (1)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454420)

I'm mystified how this works with a copyrighted song released under a CC-SA license that explicitly permits that soon to be criminal act...

If you read the bill it likely refers to unlicensed performance of an copyrighted work.

Senate can stay out of my business... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454182)

Give me a break - how far are these people willing to stick their noses into business not theirs. cover songs give the artist exposure, lip-syncing gives the artist MASSIVE exposure - it's all done in fun, no profilts are being made off the song itself - get a life people!!!

Unintended consequences (1)

MaxBooger (1877454) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454188)

So, does this make all the pop musicians who lip-sync to their own music illegal too?

Wait... that's a good thing, right?

Re:Unintended consequences (1)

madenglishbloke (829598) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454234)

It works for me!! ;)

But . . . but . . . copyright! (1)

SaroDarksbane (1784314) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454216)

But . . . but . . if we can't throw people in jail for singing along to songs they enjoy, how will artists get paid?? Why do you all hate art?? Won't somebody think of the poor, starving artists??

Only video? (1)

madenglishbloke (829598) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454218)

Would this just be on video, or would just about every pop act out there be locked up and have the key thrown away for "singing" (ie, miming, or lip syncing) to a backing track at a "live" show?

What will Tosh.0 use as material? (1)

Virtucon (127420) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454258)

Tosh.0 will have nothing to put on the air!!!

Rebecca Black's Friday? (1)

tekrat (242117) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454284)

Could someone create a federal bill to be voted into law to criminalize the singing of 'Friday', even by the originator's of this song?

That would be a law I could get behind.

Re:Rebecca Black's Friday? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454626)

I believe that would violate the First Amendment, actually, if congress were to prevent the originator(s) of a work from performing their own work that does not violate pre-existing laws.

Shredding videos (1)

Rei (128717) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454360)

I'm sure it's not what the bill was focused on, but when I read this article, I can't help but think of videos like Sigur Rós Shreds [youtube.com] .

Please tell me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454374)

Please tell me that this bill will make American Idol go away.

Nathan

ASCAP and BMI charge for covers / jukebox music (2)

mrnick (108356) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454402)

ASCAP and BMI already charge businesses (nigh clubs/etc) that earn revenue from live bands covering music and even music being played in a jukebox. Since this is already in place I wonder why ASCAP/BMI wouldn't go after youtube.com rather than try and make the performers responsible.

Here are their respective links:

http://www.ascap.com/ [ascap.com]
http://www.bmi.com/ [bmi.com]

Re:ASCAP and BMI charge for covers / jukebox music (1)

MonsterTrimble (1205334) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454806)

Because going after Google is usually a bad idea?

Summary fail (again) (1)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454424)

It would now criminalize anybody that performs a copyrighted work without permission from the copyright owner

FTFY. This law is absurd, but it would be even more absurd if it were criminal for copyright owners to perform their own work.

Your Government @ Work (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454430)

It's a shame that we're getting all of the government that we're paying for.

U.S. v. Andy Kaufman (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454436)

But the whole performance was out-of-sync!

Hyphen (2)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454440)

Let us observe a moment of silence, please, for the death of the knowledge on how to use a hyphen properly.

Wait a minute... (1)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454464)

Doesn't this make like 95% of choir/piano/symphony performances illegal? (the other 5% being classics that are thankfully beyond copyright) Owning sheet music != owning the copyright so they are obviously infringing, right?

Re:Wait a minute... (1)

kramerd (1227006) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454548)

No, owning sheet music = licensing the right to specific performance. That is why you pay for each copy of each part.

Do it yourself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454466)

The solution is to record a version of the song yourself. Its called a compulsory license. Stop playing Guitar Hero and learn how to play a real instrument.

TFA is unclear, but this is blasphemous if true (2)

lunchbox134 (1932364) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454472)

Thie whole Idea is just wrong... Playing/singing along to recorded music is how every musician I have ever met/seen/played with has gotten their start and found their passion for music. Furthermore, Performing songs that everybody already knows is how most bands learn to play with each other, Cover band is the next progression. Many a high-school garage band I have seen belt out "Classics" Cover bands is the way to go, if said musician actually believes s/he can make a career, or even money at all, playing music. The next wedding you go to, ask the band if they paid their royalties... Is every musician going to have to pay royalties for performing these songs? What about music teachers? I took lessons for 6 years on the drums, maybe a third of the time was spent on rudimentary things, the rest was "see/ hear that?, watch me do it, and then you try" Learning how to adapt was everything, and this cannot be done without examples.... are they too stealing the recording? Although TFA might be a bit off, would like to see the actual wording used. If it is only stuff uploaded to the web, I dont necesarrily agree, but I can understand the concept. If you upload a video on YouTube, you are, as far as the way most of these laws were written, a broadcaster, and subject to those terms. Though it seems they can't keep up anyway, so it may be a moot point, You are not profiting from the theft of Intellectual Property, but Google is, for every song/video that they don't have an agreement to host. Of course they have no problem deleting videos to stay within the law, someone else will upload it or something nearly the same very soon and it will be online till the cycle repeats.

Air Guitars Next (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454484)

So what's next? Playing an air guitar?

Of course, a law that would have put Milli Vanilli in jail can't be all bad.

I did a silly Youtube video (1)

insertwackynamehere (891357) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454514)

I sang Forever by Drake (feat Kanye, Eminem and Lil Wayne). I also acted it out. I took the backing track and then redid their verses and mixed them and everything. I put it on Youtube for my friends (I did it tongue in cheek, not seriously). Youtube recognized immediately that I had used copyrighted works (they recognized it as Forever which I took as a complement that I did it well enough to trick the machine) but they let me keep it up. They show an ad at the bottom of my video and presumably some of that money goes to paying the record industry for the right for people like me to use Youtube as a venue for music whether in lipsyncing, remixes, covers, background tracks or what have you. Ultimately none of these things are illegal, people just need to be paid and do they have the right to be? Well if all of Youtube is using copyrighted music, then maybe the industry should get a bit of licensing money since it may just be little guys but it's a ton of little guys. If this can be settled by placing unobtrusive ads in the offending content's lower part of the video, then great. Seems like everyone wins.

In theory, at least... (1)

alendit (1454311) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454542)

But the RIAA would NEVER missuse their power for profit.

The Bush administration built copyright prisons (0)

kawabago (551139) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454584)

Bush built copyright prisons for children so now they need the laws to fill them! It's just business as usual.

Not sure (1)

cyberchondriac (456626) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454608)

From what I've seen (and I could be wrong or have missed something because I looked this up quickly) this seems to be the key part:

A) the offense consists of 10 or more public performances by electronic means, during any 180-day period, of 1 or more copyrighted works; and
(B)(i) the total retail value of the performances, or the total economic value of such public performances to the infringer or to the copyright owner, would exceed $2,500; or
(ii) the total fair market value of licenses to offer performances of those works would exceed $5,000;;

"Electronic means" seems fairly vague. Also, there seems to be both a minimum occurrence threshold, and a requirement for some monetary gain here.
Still, this has only been introduced to a committee, the majority of bills never make it past that stage. But it made me wonder, if at some point, congress will ever attempt to crack down on your average local cover band. For years I played in bands doing top 40 tunes, and never paid a penny royalties to the artists. It's a good way for aspiring musicians to get their feet wet.

Also, I didn't see this mentioned, the Bill was introduced by Senator Amy Klobuchar (D), and co-sponsored by Senator Christopher A. Coons (D) and Senator John Cornyn (R), if anyone feels like writing to them.

they may be overstepping, but (1)

PlaceboFX (1273008) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454620)

I've seen some of those lip-sunk videos, and if not criminal, they are societal transgressions. I'm on the fence on this one.

was in a band .. here's the deal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454678)

I know that for over 15 years on playing in bands .. when we did covers we ALWAYS, ALWAYS had copies of the sheet music. ALWAYS!. Our manager would not let us perform a song if we did have the copies of the sheet music or "Written Permission" to preform those songs. When we made a CD we had to pay mechanical licensing fees to put a cover song on the disc.

that is why http://www.harryfox.com/ exists as well as others.

I wanted to put a cover of We're not gonna take it by Twisted Sister on an album. Guess what .. I ended up having to get permission from Dee Snider himself to do so. Since he actually owns the rights at least then (5+ years ago) was not allowing places like harry fox to handle his licenses.

Likewise we wanted to do a cover of "What I Like About You" from the Romantics. We couldn't do it .. why .. because we could not obtain mechanical licensee for the song ... and why .. because NO ONE KNEW WHO ACTUALLY OWNED THE SONG!!!

I agree that if someone is trying to make money with your work .. then they should have to pay for it .. these lip sync videos ... PROMOTE THE ARTISTS far better than ANY record label could.

If this passes, expect them to go after AMVs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36454710)

The recording industry cartel, of course, wants you to pony up every time you even hear a few seconds of a song. The artists have nothing to do with it-- this is just their way of saying "We 0wn these songs, bitch".

This is just them testing the water. If it passes, they will increase the pressure to criminalize sharing of every song regardless of whether one of their labels published it, and that will include creative remixes, covers, and mashups.

The Horror! (2)

senorpoco (1396603) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454774)

I am sure people lipsyncing on youtube is costing recording artists literally tens of dollars per year in lost revenue.

Broken Laws (1)

Pete LaGrange (696064) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454804)

This just highlights the fact that IP law is broken. The object that the information reach the public domain has somehow been corrupted into permanent income for the creator. The repair begins with a proper understanding of the purpose of IP protections.

Terrible Article (1)

Thelasko (1196535) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454824)

All the article says is that some new law will make lip syncing illegal. That would make every music video illegal, even the ones made by the record companies, since artists don't perform live while recording them. It doesn't provide a reference to check this claim, although I suspect it's incorrect.

Dear Senator Klobuchar (1)

EntropyXP (956792) | more than 3 years ago | (#36454826)

Dear Senator Klobuchar, Please feel free to explain to me how Senate Bill 978, protects the American middle class. Oh wait. It doesn't. It protects 1 tenth of 1 percent of the richest people in America. Thank you. I'm sure that they need that protection. I'm sure that little kids posting videos of themselves lip-syncing their favorite songs need to worry about infringing copyright. I'm sure that kids practicing songs with their band in their garage need to count the number of friends that they have listening to make sure that not more than TEN people are listening. "BUT OH, it's not meant to go after people like that," I'm sure is your likely response. WELL RIGHT THE BILL THAT WAY! Let the American people know that you are not the lackey of big business. Copy right law is outdated and draconian as it is and here you are proposing a Bill that makes it Orwellian! Why not label copy right infringers "enemy combatants" and throw them in Gitmo? Your website has all of these little feel good snippets about Americans, veterans, seniors, reducing the size of government, cutting through red tape. But yet, here you are introducing MORE RED TAPE!! More government and harsher penalties on laws that are meant to protect the RICH. Again, please feel free to explain to me, to us, to America WHO exactly this Bill is designed to help.
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