Songwriter Equity Act
03-03-2014, 09:17 PM, (This post was last modified: 03-03-2014, 09:27 PM by john.)
Songwriter Equity Act
This looks quite relevant for Haley. It came over my twitter feed today.

[Image: songwriterequityact_sitebanner2.gif?bc=w...=265&w=620]

Quote:Songwriters, composers and music publishers earn royalty income through two separate rights: the right to publicly perform their music works, and the right to make reproductions of those works and distribute those reproductions.

However, two outdated portions of the Copyright Act, Section 114(i) and Section 115, prevent songwriters and composers from receiving royalty rates that reflect fair market value for the use of their intellectual property. This has created inequity in the marketplace that harms America’s songwriters, composers and music publishers in the digital age. Now is the time to fix it.

Fact sheet

Billboard article

Quote:[Image: 50220_165436003475154_679901186_q.jpg]-ole- shared a link.
February 26
An important piece of legislation was introduced yesterday in the US House of Representatives by Representative Doug Collins.

The Songwriter Equity Act seeks to ensure that songwriters and composers are paid fairly for their work.

Read about The Songwriter Equity Act here and contact your Congressional Representative to let them know that you support good music and the people who write it.
03-03-2014, 11:19 PM,
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
So will Haley benefit from this? Sounds like she will finally get the recognition she deserves!
03-04-2014, 11:03 PM, (This post was last modified: 03-04-2014, 11:03 PM by Miguel.)
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
It's not about recognition, it's a matter of compensation. Streaming music services -- which are becoming the next big thing -- don't pay songwriters near as much in royalties as radio stations.

They want people to tell their congressional representatives to support the act.
03-11-2015, 07:25 PM,
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
Related news

Quote:'Blurred Lines' verdict likely to alter music business

Mar 11, 11:07 AM (ET)


LOS ANGELES (AP) — A verdict saying Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke copied Marvin Gaye's music to create their hit song "Blurred Lines" could ripple across the music industry, potentially changing how artists work and opening the door to new copyright claims.
An eight-person jury determined Tuesday that Williams and Thicke copied elements of Gaye's 1977 hit "Got to Give It Up" and ordered the pair to pay nearly $7.4 million to the late R&B legend's three children.
Millions more in potential future profits for "Blurred Lines" are now also at stake.
The Gaye family will seek an injunction against the song, which will give them leverage to negotiate for royalties and other concessions such as songwriting credit, although Tuesday's verdict could face years of appeals....
03-12-2015, 12:30 AM,
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
Quote:'Blurred Lines' verdict strikes fear into songwriters
AFP By Shaun Tandon
6 hours ago

New York (AFP) - A ruling that pop stars Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams stole from Marvin Gaye threatens to create -- in the words of their smash hit -- even more blurred lines for songwriters who could increasingly be hauled to court over their artistic inspirations....

"It's just a huge nail in the coffin for an already six-foot-under music industry. Now none of us have any idea what's going to win a lawsuit," said songwriter Greg Wells, who has co-written with superstars Adele and Katy Perry.

"It reaffirms to me that for most ordinary people, music sounds like Japanese to them if they're not Japanese. This just takes the fear knob and cranks it to 11 for people who do what I and Pharrell do for a living," he told AFP.

E. Michael Harrington, a composer and expert on music law at SAE Institute, Nashville, said that the ruling, if it stands, would mean that "plenty of plaintiffs can go crazy and sue everyone."

"I've never seen a decision that is this poor -- the melody wasn't taken, there were no lyrics taken, there was no chord progressions taken," he said. "If this is the standard, it's below floor level it's so low." ...

The songwriter busbee, who has worked with a diverse array of artists including Shakira and Garth Brooks, said that melody infringement was a real problem but that professionals were careful....

Many songwriters say that they are regularly barraged by claims that they copied other artists, often obscure works that they had never heard of.

"No one knows every single song ever and you would basically have to submit every song to a musicologist, which wouldn't be very cost-effective," busbee said.

One prominent case emerged this year over British soul singer Sam Smith's smash hit "Stay With Me." After growing chatter about similarities between the song and Tom Petty's 1989 hit "I Won't Back Down," Smith quietly added Petty and the US rocker's collaborator Jeff Lynne as co-writers.

Smith, who was born in 1992, said he had never heard "I Won't Back Down" and Petty agreed that he believed the similarities were coincidental....
03-12-2015, 01:23 PM,
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
One more pain in the xxx thing about the world today but I don't have a solution.

There is a difference between "dibs" and allowing people to get a reward from their time investment
but it's a nearly impossible call about who "just got there first"and whether or not something "would have been created anyway independently". At least patents expire in a reasonable amount of time but trademarks last 100 years and gee that's a awful lots of ideas that people can claim as theirs alone for generations.

What is really tough is that even if they did hire a musicologist they still would need to answer to attorneys bringing infringement suits with different musicologists. Good faith wouldn't be enough. Hopefully the publishing industry will create some board to submit music to for review and required changes that could at least give a certification of "sufficient uniqueness" and congress could pass some "safe harbor" law.

I hate regulations but I hate normal people being forced to answer to attorneys from well financed enitities even more.
03-12-2015, 09:37 PM,
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
Quote:How Similar Is Too Similar?
What do Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams owe to Marvin Gaye? Post published by Elizabeth Hellmuth Margulis Ph.D. on Mar 12, 2015

Does the song “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams sound similar to Marvin Gaye’s song “Got to Give It Up?” Does it sound so similar that it actually represents copyright infringement? Today, a jury of eight said yes. But a team of psychologists, computer scientists, and musicologists who gathered recently (link is external) at the Lorentz Center in Netherlands for a workshop on musical similarity might provide a more nuanced answer: it’s complicated.

Perceptions of musical similarity depend heavily on context. To a person who grew up listening only to classical music, all pop music might sound more or less the same. But to a devoted fan, even every Taylor Swift song might sound thrillingly unique. Similarity isn’t a fixed measure; depending on their listening backgrounds, two people might perceive the same pair of excerpts as highly similar or highly dissimilar.

The ways in which two pieces can be alike are almost innumerable: they might have similar instrumentation, or rhythm, or notes, or expressive timing, or performer inflections, or form…yet determining which of these elements are essential to a particular piece is challenging. Is Postmodern Jukebox’s (link is external) version of All About That Bass the same song as Meghan Trainor’s (link is external)?...

Psychology Today gets into the act. Huh? Seems like an odd question with respect to copyright.
03-13-2015, 04:45 PM,
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
(03-12-2015, 09:37 PM)john Wrote: Psychology Today gets into the act. Huh? Seems like an odd question with respect to copyright.

Actually this makes a lot of sense to me approaching it from this angle.

I already had large misgivings about a jury , without years of training, making such a subjective decision for something that involves so many millions of dollars and is so pivotal to the ablity to be creative.

Whats worse is that the standard of proof is quite low in civil cases: preponderance of the evidence amounts to not a heck of a lot more than "probably" and I'm 90% certain that only 5 of 8 jurors need to agree that there is a cause for action.

There really needs to be a lot more jurisprudence and congressional guidance on the subject to keep the whole thing from just being a "sounds similar to me" thing for people with different ears.... its almost certain that a good lawyer could convince a fair percentage of people that sections of one song sound like another and it becomes a sort of crap shoot to see if you happen to get 5 of 8 people malleable enough to hear it that way.

Rules like "not more than 16 bars can share more than a 90% correlation in rhymic and tonal patterns as defined in this techincal paper using tools of statistical analysis" seems like the only fair way to go.

Turn it over to Math majors who can look at it in an unemotional way.

I'm big on juries being able to judge things like whether or not a person is lieing criminal cases: Judging if people around you are lieing is something humans build real expertise in over their life experiences. For reasons the article lays out I just don't think jurors are equipped for the type of distinction that needs to be made in a predictable way.
03-23-2015, 05:48 PM,
RE: Songwriter Equity Act
Music lawyer rocks the industry again

Ask Richard S. Busch, the lawyer who earlier this monthwon a nearly $7.4 million copyright suit against Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams, why he is so successful, and he will mention the 1997 film “The Devil’s Advocate,” in which Al Pacino plays Satan posing as a master lawyer.

In one scene, a modestly dressed Pacino shares a secret with his stylish and polished protégé, played by Keanu Reeves. “I’m a surprise,” Pacino tells him. “They don’t see me coming.”

“I think that’s me,” Busch, a partner in the firm King & Ballow in Nashville, said the other day with a laugh. “I’m sure Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke said, ‘Who’s this guy from Nashville, Tennessee?’ They didn’t see me coming.”

Busch is not a surprise any longer. In one of the most important copyright cases in the music industry in years, he triumphed over Williams and Thicke and their elite Los Angeles law firm, convincing a federal jury that the songwriters’ 2013 hit “Blurred Lines” had too closely copied Marvin Gaye’s 1977 song “Got to Give It Up.”

In truth, the lawyers representing the two musicians knew exactly who Busch was. In the small world of high-powered entertainment lawyers, Busch has carved out a niche as a crusading outsider, winning cases that have had wide-ranging repercussions for the music industry.

Link to full article:

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