Support for Feldmahler and IMSLP

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jvdhout
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50 vs 70 years

Postby jvdhout » Thu Nov 08, 2007 4:51 am

It does not matter where the site is hosted when you own a site for a worldwide public (UE is right about that). You only have to make an alteration for the 20 years (70-50) which people are not allowed to see in every country. Maybe it is even better to work from a 70+ basis (because there is still a lot in the public domain!) and make little adjustments for separate laws in countries where more scores are legal to publish.

but this is getting a bit off topic: I am offering my help and whether or not my location in Europe is of any influence can be discussed in another topic.

kind regards, Jurgen

jhellingman
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Re: Help with IMSLP

Postby jhellingman » Thu Nov 08, 2007 8:02 am

jvdhout wrote:As a musicologist i think it is a big loss that the IMSLP has been closed. I know the basics of copyright, music and computers to offer the following:

I would like to reopen the IMSLP on my own account and turn the site into a completely legal music site (which is not that hard, because the site was already for about 98% legal.)


The site would have been 100% legal also in The Netherlands if our lame parliamentarians had stood up for the public domain.

Please tell the Dutch government and the European commission how big the loss was when they stole 20 years of work from the public domain back in 1995. The only way we can guaranty the continued availability of music and cultural heritage is to tell, and keep on telling the parliamentarians and other politicians involved that such a give-away party of public goods is unacceptable -- especially if they end up in the hands of bullying mafiosi.

jvdhout
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50 vs 70 years

Postby jvdhout » Thu Nov 08, 2007 8:57 am

The only way we can guaranty the continued availability of music and cultural heritage is to tell, and keep on telling the parliamentarians and other politicians involved that such a give-away party of public goods is unacceptable

I will do the best i can :o
But it are two seperate issues you do not want to mix up:
1. have a wonderfull site like IMSLP doing everything what is possible within current laws
2. try to convince countries to change laws.

And the second one takes a little bit more time... but it is worth keep on trying. The more urgent issue at this moment is keeping IMSLP alive. Not by provocing (inter)national laws, but by following them.

We have about 1.000 years of written music and the discussion is now about 2% (20 years) of the status of 'public domain'. So there is still a lot to cover for the whole world. Those 20 years can be covered for the countries which have a 50 year limit. And with an IMSLP you can have a strong statement towards the 70-year-limit-countries.

chamberpianist
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Re: Help with IMSLP

Postby chamberpianist » Thu Nov 08, 2007 12:03 pm

jhellingman wrote:Please tell the Dutch government and the European commission how big the loss was when they stole 20 years of work from the public domain back in 1995.


Does anybody here know, whether works, which have already been in the public domain in a country can be put out of public domain by a new law ? I.e. does the +70 rule only apply to works which have not been in the public domain prior to the 1995 law in the EU (or prior to the +100 rule in Mexico prior to 2003) ?

If the legal position was that a work which is at some point in time in the
public domain can be put out of public domain by a new law, then the proposal of a +70 years IMSLP is futile since it does not comply with Mexican law and it is vulnerable to a +infinity law which some obscure state may come
up with in the future.

I sincerely hope that IMSLP comes up soon, I have been using it a lot (most of the stuff I am interested in is PD anyway in the EU) and it would
be a great loss should Feldmahler and coworkers not be able to find an equally resourceful way to reopen it soon.

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Postby HonkyTonk » Thu Nov 08, 2007 12:46 pm

No lawyer, me, but I know that Gershwin's works went out of copyright in the UK in the late 1980's and a few years later when I was enquiring about them at Chappell's (the London agent) I was informed that they were again subject to copyright restrictions, so I guess that new legislation can put works, whose copyright has lapsed into the public domain, straight back into the hands of publishers!

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Re: 50 vs 70 years

Postby jhellingman » Thu Nov 08, 2007 2:14 pm

jvdhout wrote:We have about 1.000 years of written music and the discussion is now about 2% (20 years) of the status of 'public domain'. So there is still a lot to cover for the whole world. Those 20 years can be covered for the countries which have a 50 year limit. And with an IMSLP you can have a strong statement towards the 70-year-limit-countries.


You are not talking about 2%. The production of new works is growing rather fast, and often the most relevant works are the more recent. How many works do we have from the years 1000 to 1020? How many from 1930 to 1950? So cutting yet another 20 years from the public domain is devastating. Why? Typically, works stay in print, on the cultural foreground for a limited number of years. Except for a few works that grow to be classics, most works disappear from markets within 10 to 20 years. Now, for a few of those works, we may not even mourn them, but for many others, that is a big pity. They are worthwhile, and could be used for building upon, or just enjoyed, if they were not locked away in copyrights clutches. Now, if copyright doesn't last too long, people will remember popular stories or tunes from their youth, and start popularizing them again when they become free. However, current copyright terms are DESIGNED to last two generations (assumed to be 25 years at first), effectively to MAKE SURE that the last people remembering such once popular works are dead and decomposed before they become free. About 10 years ago, when the pressure for extensions showed its ugly face again, it was argued that 50 years was not enough to guarantee that, and so 20 years were added, decreasing the chance of somebody still remembering a popular work by the time it becomes public domain to almost zero. This is why the increase by just 20 years is so damning to the public domain, and not just a loss of 2%.

You have had countries that banned music altogether (Afghanistan under the Taliban), so telling IMSLP to follow copyright laws outside Canada is sure suicide. It cannot be done, and should not be done. IMSLP will stay with life+50 (and within the law).

Fighting current copyright laws is fighting to keep culture alive!

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Postby jhellingman » Thu Nov 08, 2007 2:20 pm

HonkyTonk wrote:No lawyer, me, but I know that Gershwin's works went out of copyright in the UK in the late 1980's and a few years later when I was enquiring about them at Chappell's (the London agent) I was informed that they were again subject to copyright restrictions, so I guess that new legislation can put works, whose copyright has lapsed into the public domain, straight back into the hands of publishers!


Yep, and recently, a Dutch choir was heavily fined for performing his works from copied sheet music, just months before they will become public domain again. We need to be constantly vigilant to stop parliamentarians (in the EU via the undemocratic and completely non-transparent ways of the European Commission) from giving in to bribes and giving away public property for nothing.

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Postby jvdhout » Thu Nov 08, 2007 5:25 pm

Well, the 2% discussion is tempting, but i try to stay focussed on the subject over here.

First of all, I do think "the system" is messed up. It looks like the focus on copyright protection shifts from protecting the rights of the author of a creative work (and its relatives after his death) to protecting the interests of publishers of creative works. And that is wrong.

Secondly, How can we - with a messed-up-system - get the IMSLP back online? And that question is more interesting at this point. The only thing I can think of, is obeying the laws from the countries where te site can be seen (where we do not worry about taliban like regimes please). If someone else knows an alternative: I would like to hear those! but i can't think of anything else.

Copyright laws are in many aspects stupid, but we have to deal with them. On the same time, fight against them politically, and hope there will change something for the better.

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Postby Archangel » Fri Nov 09, 2007 5:26 am

It's unbelievable what they have done, the site had over 30,000 scans on it and now they want to shut it down, unbelievable. You know maybe you could petition for the sites revival, just an idea. But this was really a great site, probably one of my favorites, I would be sad if it was put down forever. But, I can't help through monetary actions since I have no job and only I'm sixteen.

Your right, the publishers deserve no right to the music they publish, after all they are not the ones who create it. But, how else will composers get there music out to everyone while still making a living. Even in strongly fortified systems, there are always cracks.
Through music, we experience a whole, new world.

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Postby jhellingman » Fri Nov 09, 2007 8:29 am

Archangel wrote:Your right, the publishers deserve no right to the music they publish, after all they are not the ones who create it. But, how else will composers get there music out to everyone while still making a living. Even in strongly fortified systems, there are always cracks.


New composers have the option to publish their works under the various creative commons licenses, and let the internet do the rest. I would suggest composers to do so with a selection of their work.

Established composers will have more trouble, especially due to the all-or-nothing proposition of collecting societies in some countries. You either assign all your works with us, or none, and in the latter case you will not even get a penny of whatever we collect in compulsory licensing schemes. (This is how it works in the Netherlands, with the added clause that they will not pay ANYTHING until the last lonely composer from Korea has registered for his 12 euro share until they pay -- resulting in unpaid collected levies on blank media of about 60 million euros; similar abusive behavior in Belgium already forced the government to break down on one of these culprits). The utter contempt the people at collecting societies have for composers and musicians is unbelievable...

In this case, I suggest composers and musicians to file anti-trust and anti-cartel complaints about this behavior and write to law-makers, to break open the option to use creative commons licenses.

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Postby jhellingman » Fri Nov 09, 2007 8:34 am

jvdhout wrote:Secondly, How can we - with a messed-up-system - get the IMSLP back online? And that question is more interesting at this point. The only thing I can think of, is obeying the laws from the countries where te site can be seen [...]. If someone else knows an alternative: I would like to hear those! but i can't think of anything else.


The alternative is to develop enough legal and financial back-bone to fight back on the bullies, then go on-line again, let them sue (or sue yourself to force them to swallow accusations of copyright infringement), fight and win the fight in court, and pave the way for operations like this to continue operating, as well as supporting the public domain and access to cultural heritage, which is our unalienable human right. I think this is exactly the track IMSLP is taking.

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Postby Yagan Kiely » Fri Nov 09, 2007 11:16 am

It does not matter where the site is hosted when you own a site for a worldwide public (UE is right about that). You only have to make an alteration for the 20 years (70-50) which people are not allowed to see in every country. Maybe it is even better to work from a 70+ basis (because there is still a lot in the public domain!) and make little adjustments for separate laws in countries where more scores are legal to publish.
Please read the BBC article on the situation. It is 100% legal. UE have no authority, neither does EU. Warning are sufficient. It does matter where it is hosted as long as you don't promote illegal activities. Those "little" adjustments take a huge amount of effort and money, and are not required. See BBC again.

Too many new people come here, agree with UE without actually knowing what is needed. Everyone try actually reading before agreeing the UE who are JUST posting propaganda.

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Postby HonkyTonk » Fri Nov 09, 2007 1:49 pm

jhellingman wrote:
HonkyTonk wrote:No lawyer, me, but I know that Gershwin's works went out of copyright in the UK in the late 1980's and a few years later when I was enquiring about them at Chappell's (the London agent) I was informed that they were again subject to copyright restrictions, so I guess that new legislation can put works, whose copyright has lapsed into the public domain, straight back into the hands of publishers!


Yep, and recently, a Dutch choir was heavily fined for performing his works from copied sheet music, just months before they will become public domain again. We need to be constantly vigilant to stop parliamentarians (in the EU via the undemocratic and completely non-transparent ways of the European Commission) from giving in to bribes and giving away public property for nothing.


Even though George Gershwin's works will be out of copyright again soon, what happens about songs written in collaboration with another, such as brother Ira his oft-time lyricist who died in 1983; does it mean that only the purely orchestral/instrumental works will become public domain again?
Would it be acceptable to perform the songs with the lyrics translated, e.g. into Dutch?!!

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Postby Yagan Kiely » Fri Nov 09, 2007 4:00 pm

Someone correct me if I am wrong, but the music will be public domain while the words are copyright (Depending on county... don't know the details). Translating copyright text in itself is an infringement, so publishing it should be as well.

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Postby pierre.chepelov » Fri Nov 09, 2007 10:09 pm

ArcticWind7 wrote:Someone correct me if I am wrong, but the music will be public domain while the words are copyright (Depending on county... don't know the details). Translating copyright text in itself is an infringement, so publishing it should be as well.


If the (original) words are still copyrighted, then the music stay copyrighted also, even if its composer died 100 year ago.
The author of the words and the composer have the same status of "co-authors", and the protection delay starts with the death of the last surviving one.
Example: Within the EU, although works by Debussy (d. 1918) are PD, his masterwork Pelléas et Mélisande is still protected, because the words are by Maeterlinck (d. 1949).
Works by George Gershwin with words by Ira will certainly stay protected for years almost everywhere. (Except pre-1923 in the US, pre-1970 in Russia...)

You're right for translations; and I think that even if the text is PD but the music stay protected, it is also prohibited to sing a newly translated text without proper authorization.


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