OT:minstrel: copywrite, etc.

mor-plentyn at juno.com mor-plentyn at juno.com
Mon Mar 13 14:04:40 PST 2000

On Mon, 13 Mar 2000 16:17:03 -0800 "Ingus Moen" <ingus_moen at hotmail.com>
> > There was a recent uproar about a girl scout group singin "Happy
> > Birthday" at one of their functions (yep, that's under copywrite) 
> so, no,
> > it doesn't matter who's doing the performance, under what 
> circumstances.
> > The only reason most performers don't have to go to the trouble of
> > obtaining permission to perform copywritten material is that the 
> venues
> > in which they perform have to do that.  The way I understand it, 
> they pay
> > a yearly fee to one of the "clearing" organizations.  Therefor, 
> the SCA
> > would be exactly who an irate copywrite holder would target, just 
> like
> > the Girl Scouts were in the aforementioned example.
> >
> > Melusine d'Argent
> > (who is a singer-songwriter in the modern world and has spent much 
> time
> > researching this issue)
> >
The pagents are suppose to pay a fee to the licensing agencies, just like
the local coffehouse down the street does to be able to have music on
Sat. nights.

I'll have to see if I can find the file with the news story about the
Girl Scouts and their trouble with "Happy Birthday", but If I remember
correctly they were singing it at a gathering--no recording, but there
may have been some sort of entry fee.

That's what the dividing line seems to be: if anyone is charging a fee at
the event, not if the performer is making money, or even if the
performance is the main focus of the event.  

The whole text of the U.S. copywrite law is on line; I don't have the
URL, but doing a search on "copywrite" should find it. 
> I put the OT on this because we're floating off the subject, but I'm
> wondering.... What about teen pageants and such?  I certainly can't 
> belive
> that all those girls are paying royalties for the songs they sing 
> for the
> talent competitions and they're competing for scholarships, etc, 
> which
> bottom-lines as money.  Where are all the hordes of lawyers there, 
> clamoring
> for rights and fees for a performance of siad pieces? As I said, I 
> KNOW, so it may bery well be that the pageants pay for blanket 
> permissions,
> but I've never heard of such a thing.
> ANd to answer, no, I hadn't heard of "Birthdaygate" either.  Perhaps 
> that
> came about because they sang it in a video they used to promote GIrl 
> Scouts
> or sold for profit?
> Regards, Ingus

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