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   is no $gain use of music in public a violation?
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   Author  Topic: is no $gain use of music in public a violation?  (Read 1336 times)
Curt Ray
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is no $gain use of music in public a violation?
« on: Nov 21st, 2007, 10:30pm »
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HELP! Huh
I occasionally do DJ and karaoke in public strictly for fun. NO money is involved. I have fun. My daughter has fun. people passing by have fun.  
 
I occasionally do this in our local downtown area during public festivals and nice summer evenings. I don't make a dime, I don't take tips, I don't have a business card. Everybody has fun. Now BMI is threatening legal action unless I pay them a copyright licensing fee.  
 
Doesn't somebody have to actually profit in some sort of tangible monetary way before that is required? By the way... I have legally purchased only REAL discs of music to the 'tune' of over 1,500 discs, tapes and albums. That translates to supporting the legal music industry to the 'tune' of over $17K US Dollars!
 
IS THIS NON PROFIT USE OF MUSIC A VIOLATION OF COPYRIGHT LAWS?
 
I am a professional artist and would not dream of pirating or putting Niel Diamond or Carrie Underwood out of a paying gig in my little nowhere town of 15,000!
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mactheknife
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Posts: 110
Re: is no $gain use of music in public a violation
« Reply #1 on: Nov 26th, 2007, 8:37am »
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In short, there's nothing in the copyright law that restricts violations to only uses for profit.  It could come into play in determining things like fair use, but that doesn't seem to come into the picture here.  If by DJ'ing you have "publicly performed" works under copyright protection, you may be in violation of copyright laws, even if you don't make a dime.
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Jonn
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wCkcCncAHB
« Reply #2 on: Nov 26th, 2007, 2:55pm »
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Jonn1234567890Jonn
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Jonn
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wCkcCncAHB
« Reply #3 on: Nov 26th, 2007, 2:55pm »
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Jonn1234567890Jonn
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Fred
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Re: is no $gain use of music in public a violation
« Reply #4 on: Nov 26th, 2007, 3:33pm »
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Doesn't it depend somewhat on exactly what he's doing?  Per 17 USC 110, so long as the performance isn't "public" and he doesn't charge admission, there's no problem.   There's nothing wrong with playing your CD's at your private party and singing along, even if that party is at your great-aunt's nursing home for her birthday, and all the residents are invited.
 
But given that there's a specific exception for performances at private charity functions of groups like the VFW, you'd think there'd be an exception for just performing music out of the goodness of your heart for anyone to hear.  But there isn't.  
 
Write your Congressman.
 
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