Copyright & Media Update – 9/2/16

How to Keep Your Small Business Out of Copyright Trouble

BY BROCK SHINEN, ESQ.: When a small business client called me one day to ask how to respond to a demand for $5,000.00 for the unauthorized use of a stock image, I took a deep breath and prepared myself for the inevitable conversation that would follow. I knew I would start by asking a few basic questions: “Where did you find the image?” “Did you receive any permission at all?” “Was it a commercial use?” I also knew the business owner would respond by telling me they found the image online, on a “free” site, and that they didn’t see what they did wrong. READ MORE…

Publisher Exec Responds to Tech Investor Who Says Songwriters Are Being Deceived

DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS: The following guest post comes from David Israelite, CEO of the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA), a trade association representing American music publishers.  It’s a response to an earlier guest post on Digital Music News from Jody Dunitz, a former executive at Sony/ATV who has been a sharp critic of ASCAP, BMI, and the NMPA for acting against songwriter interests.

Dunitz is Part of Tech’s Plan to Pit Songwriters against Artists & Advocates. It is incredibly arrogant for someone who left the world’s biggest music publisher for the other side to become a “Tech Coast Angel” to tell songwriters what’s good for them.  Now, in addition to investing in startups, Jody Dunitz has clearly also made it her mission to mislead music creators and instigate discord within the music community – to the tech community’s advantage. In her recent piece, she confuses many of the current battles happening in the music industry in an effort to pit publishers and songwriters against record labels and artists – when our real battle is with the digital services who seek to pay us lower royalty rates, and the outdated government regulations that allow them to do so. READ MORE…

Even Spotify Is Surprised by the Huge Success of Its Discover Weekly Playlists

BY MARTY SWANT: Spotify’s secret sauce of algorithmic playlists didn’t happen by accident. But its rapid growth—and rabid fan reaction—kind of did. It’s been a little over a year since the streaming music service launched its Discovery Weekly feature, which has since become a must-listen fixture for customers around the world. As of this May, more than 5 billion tracks had been streamed on Discover Weekly playlists. While the company hasn’t officially updated that number since summer began, Spotify senior product owner Matt Ogle tells Adweek the total is now likely around 6 billion or 7 billion streams. READ MORE…

5 Seriously Dumb Myths About Copyrights

BY JOHN DEGEN: Every year around Shakespeare’s birthday, which has also been declared World Book and Copyright Day, I see articles popping up here and there repeating some howling inaccuracies about the legal and economic concept of copyright. I get it — copyright is complex and, frankly, not all that gripping. Also, there’s that free culture movement that says all sorts of truthy-sounding things about how copyright might just be a bad thing. And we’re pro-freedom, right? On the other hand… Shakespeare!… plus all those still-alive authors I love to read, and who need to make a living. READ MORE…

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