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   Pre-1972 recordings OK to use?
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   Author  Topic: Pre-1972 recordings OK to use?  (Read 1118 times)
nobody
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Pre-1972 recordings OK to use?
« on: May 19th, 2004, 1:59pm »
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Major labels had assumed that common law and/or state law would protect such recordings from "piracy." Given this SDNY ruling, that may be in serious doubt. Of course this would apply only to pre-1972 recordings of pre-1923 scores. (e.g. classical, folk, and ragtime)
 
Here is a statement from the firm who represented the defendant:
http://www.salans.com/news/NY082003_wins.cfm
 
Here are two unrelated sites who apparently see the ruling as an open door:
 
http://www.r-vcr.com/mp3pd/
http://www.perfessorbill.com/albums/pbrec4.shtml
 
Anybody know of similar cases in other districts or appeals? What do you have to say on the subject? If the labels don't want to reissue the recordings, why should others not? The ruling found that it was not unfair competition, nor copyright infringement.
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Mac the Knife
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Re: Pre-1972 recordings OK to use?
« Reply #1 on: Jun 3rd, 2004, 12:32pm »
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From what I read of the actual opinion, this is a very narrow case that won't apply to every single pre-72 recording.  I believe the court held that the original rightsholder in the U.S. had "abandoned" the common law copyright in these recordings, therefore making them free to use by anyone (under state law).  It shouldn't necessarily be assumed that other pre-72 recording copyrights have been similarly abandoned.
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