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Vivaldi
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Postby Vivaldi » Wed Oct 31, 2007 2:14 am

Also, if what Mr Irons says is true, that the Mahler works are copyrighted because they are published by UE, then publishers worldwide will have a field day. For example, Dover and Kalmus reprinted lots and lots of sheet music that are public domain, they can simply claim copyright for all these PD works and charge a high fee for it. Similarly, if I were to open a publishing company, I can simply reprint public domain works and claim copyright for myself.

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Postby HonkyTonk » Wed Oct 31, 2007 11:09 am

Vivaldi wrote:Also, if what Mr Irons says is true, that the Mahler works are copyrighted because they are published by UE, then publishers worldwide will have a field day. For example, Dover and Kalmus reprinted lots and lots of sheet music that are public domain, they can simply claim copyright for all these PD works and charge a high fee for it. Similarly, if I were to open a publishing company, I can simply reprint public domain works and claim copyright for myself.


Which Mahler works being claimed by UE appeared on the ISMLP site?
Living in the UK I have purchased scores of most Mahler works in various editions over the past 30+ years (including Kalmus, Dover, Eulenburg and Philharmonia, ie UE).
The Eulenburg scores of Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen and Kindertotenlieder carry no copyright warning but are both prefaced with a descriptive note by H F Redlich dated 1959 and 1961 respectively.
My Philharmonia (UE)score of the 7th symphony has a foot- note ascribing the copyright to the years 1909, 1937 and 1960 to Bote & Bock, Berlin and adds "Published in the Philharmonia edition by permission."

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Postby miguelm97 » Wed Oct 31, 2007 12:08 pm

HonkyTonk wrote:
Which Mahler works being claimed by UE appeared on the ISMLP site?


The 1st symphony

Blouis79
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Postby Blouis79 » Wed Oct 31, 2007 1:17 pm

Vivaldi wrote:[...] they can simply claim copyright for all these PD works and charge a high fee for it. Similarly, if I were to open a publishing company, I can simply reprint public domain works and claim copyright for myself.


Technically, I understand they can claim copyright in typesetting, layout, editorial corrections, commentary, etc. But the underlying musical information is still PD - so if you scan and OCR the work and re-render the basic music, you have done nothing wrong.

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Mahler

Postby Eric » Wed Oct 31, 2007 7:23 pm

Some of the arrangements that appeared were by Zemlinsky, yes? Scan or typeset the originals rather than arrangements that probably still are copyrighted, and issues may be fewer... (or spend awhile and make your own arrangements - always worthwhile, and one learns quite a bit about the score, though one lacks Zemlinsky's personal familiarity with the composer.)

Eric

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Postby primomusic » Thu Nov 01, 2007 3:55 am

so if you scan and OCR the work and re-render the basic music, you have done nothing wrong.


Speaking as one that is very familiar with musical OCR software and uses it in my profession to generate transposed scores for soloist and ensembles on a regular basis, while this is an admirable idea its not a very realistic one unless a person has nothing else to do but edit OCR generated scores for eternity. The problem is in the way OCR works and the complexity of musical scores as well as the type and quality in which the original has been printed. OCR reads virtually every mark that is on a page and then attempts to "read" it into the nearest recognizable musical object. If the score is digitally printed, which is the case for virtually all musical scores these days, OCR does very well once the proper resolution value is figured out and that can change from score to score. Very well means anywhere from 85-95% accuracy which still requires some editing of the score. However, if the score is typeset printed, which is the case for virtually all older scores that are in public domain, OCR is maybe 50% accurate at best. That is because OCR also reads ink bleed over and becomes confused when trying to read what has been scanned. OCR also reads such marks as pencil notations or library ink stamps and attempts to convert them into things such as mistaken time signatures and key signatures. Thus requiring a great deal of time to edit more complex scores. Last year I attended a workshop hosted by Sibelius for maximizing its Photoscore OCR software, which in my opinion is the leader in musical OCR software. After which I tried rendering scores downloaded from IMSLP using all the tricks and tips offered by the "experts" from Sibelius and the rendered accuracy was not very good because of the amount of ink bleed from the old typesets. The time it would have taken me to edit just one score would not have been worth it.

That said, it is my opinion that nobody should have to resort to OCR rendering just to posses scores that are public domain in their country and not pd in another. What has happened to IMSLP and the backlash that has resulted is very personal to me because as a musician and music educator I also envisioned this very idea over ten years ago and just did not have the time or where with all to make it happen. I firmly believe that with our present and rapidly excellerated technology more and more musicians are side stepping publishers, managers, and recording companies, finding it more advantages and continually just as easy to do it themselves. For this reason it is my opinion that UE saw the hand writing on the wall and made this heavy handed move completely out of desperation. If it is any consolation to the creator and volunteers of IMSLP, you have aided scores of musicians and educators around the globe in ways that would never have been possible. My sincerest thanks.
"A man who works with his hands is a laborer. A man who works with his hands and mind is a craftsman. But a man who works with his hands, mind and heart is an Artist." -Socrates

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Postby Blouis79 » Thu Nov 01, 2007 4:27 am

primomusic wrote:[...] The time it would have taken me to edit just one score would not have been worth it.[...]


I also regularly scan and OCR scores from paper. (BTW PhotoScore is made by Neuratron.) Note reading accuracy is consistently fairly good. Latest version of PhotoScore is meant to be better but haven't used in in anger yet. Takes me perhaps 15-30 mins per page to fix OCR errors and add dynamics, ties, slurs etc. It's easily worth it for me as a musical beginner to be able to hear a computer performance when there are no recorded performances to be found and way easier than manually entering the whole score.

For scores which have recent high quality copyright reprints and where the original works are hard to find on paper but out of copyright, scan/OCR may be the only way to easily liberate these works.

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Postby Carolus » Thu Nov 01, 2007 4:57 am

Primomusic and Blouis79,

I also have considerable experience with music-OCR issues. The three main programs are SmartScore, Photoscore, and SharpEye. In my experience, all three function reasonably well when scanning printouts (or printed scores created from) Finale, Sibelius or a similar music typesetting program. For any music created via hand-process - which includes traditional music engraving produced with puches and plates, music typewriters, stamping (as done esp. in Korea from the 1960s-1980s) - the accuracy rates plummet rapidly. The hand process itself is a significant part of the issue over and above printing such as spotting, over and under-inking, etc.

When this site re-launches (note that I said "when"), it might be very interesting to host MusicXML files of public domain works in addition to the present collection of PDF's with a few Finale and Sibelius files added.

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Postby pml » Thu Nov 01, 2007 6:16 am

Before I start, it would be opportune to state that I AM NOT A LAWYER, should anyone be so foolish as to treat the following as "legal advice".

HonkyTonk wrote:Which Mahler works being claimed by UE appeared on the ISMLP site?


This, and all other related information, appeared on the first page of this thread, quoted by Carolus:

Mahler Gustav (1860-1911)
Piano Quartet in A Minor - no longer at IMSLP
Symphony No. 1 (pub.1898, Weinberger, rev.1906, UE)
Symphony No. 2 (pub.1897, Hofmeister, rev.1906, UE)
Symphony No. 8 (pub.1910, UE)

To take these one by one.

The Piano Quartet is legitimately copyrightable as there is recent editorial contribution (by the recently deceased composer Alfred Schnittke), and as Carolus noted, was therefore removed from the IMSLP site, because - as some people still don't seem to appreciate this fact, it is worth reiterating - we do respect copyright law.

Symphony 1 wasn't even originally published by U-E, but by one of the publishers who united to form U-E in 1901. The revisions in the reprints of 1906 (plate U.E. 2931) are completely minor, compared to the subsequent ones carried out by Erwin Ratz in the critical edition scores published mid-century. These critical editions usually took the original plates as starting points for the editorial revisions, and to my knowledge no other significant critical reappraisals of the Mahler scores occurred previously or subsequently. So the question is whether the scan on IMSLP is the Ratz version, or the original 1906 print. The fact that the score bears a copyright of 1967 is likely to be either a scarecrow notice, or is representative of it actually being the publication date of the Ratz version. If U-E were a German firm, the Ratz version would only have a 25 year copyright term, but Austrian law has no similar ruling regarding Urtext editions. I would therefore judge that U-E's request is only reasonable if and only if the score is the Ratz version. A scan of a 1906 print is fair game as it is completely untenable for U-E to claim a 100+ year copyright from the date of publication when the life+70 copyright term since Mahler's death has well and truly expired (except possibly for Côte d'Ivoire/Mexico, see below at *). I haven't had time to closely look over the score to ascertain which version of the score was represented on IMSLP, but will edit this reply once I am more certain.

Bruno Walter's piano 4-hand transcriptions of Symphonies 1 and 2 do have to be removed, as Walter lived well into the 1960s and he is therefore entitled to copyright protection for his work, under most jurisdictional decisions regarding the creative content that is involved in any form of re-arrangement.

However, the same arguments before, in respect of the full score of Symphony 1, would apply to the full score of Symphony 2: a scan of the 1906 plates, U.E. 2933, is well and truly in the public domain (other than Côte d'Ivoire/Mexico, possibly*) and therefore fair game, and the only version that would enjoy any form of copyright protection anywhere is the critical edition by Ratz.

Symphony 8 was published by U-E in 1911 as plates U.E. 2772, and 3000, and again is only eligible for protection (* Côte d'Ivoire and Mexico excepted, again) if it is the Ratz version. A brief glance at the score suggests it is not the Ratz version, though I would have to make further consultations to be entirely certain. Again, for U-E to claim a 96-year term of copyright protection (effectively 1911 to 2007) when Mahler's own life+70 year term under Austrian law has been expired for over 25 years, is arguably bizarre in the extreme.

Best regards, Philip

* In an earlier post, the representative of U-E stated that the term of life+100 years is a fiction, and most works have a protection of life+75 years. This doesn't seem to be true, and in any case, one would have to be an expert in copyright law to speak with complete authority on the Mexican situation. Apparently the protection was life+75 years until July 2003, when the change to life+100 years was enacted. Does this act retrospectively to all of the works of authors and composers who died between 1903 and 1928? Some legislation has been aggressive in attempting to wrest works back from public domain, so one would need to know the particulars of that particular act of law. Good luck!
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jhellingman
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Postby jhellingman » Thu Nov 01, 2007 9:58 am

Project Gutenberg has its Distributed Proofreaders project, (http://www.pgdp.net/), which allows people to fix OCR problems, or transcribe hard to OCR pages on line, one-page-at-a-time. We have been experimenting with music, but this has mainly been limited to small excerpts found in various books. For example, I've dealt with music in Carl Lumholz' "Unknown Mexico", a very valuable resource on Mexican ethnography (see http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/16426, the author died in 1922), where music was transcribed to ABC, and added as newly set scores, as well as small midi files.

A similar system could be set up for music scores. At PGDP we can handle several thousand pages per day, with about 5.000 active volunteers. Music is considerably more labor intensive to transcribe, but there is a huge public for it as well, especially if you develop systems where people can initially play the notes. I know it would take quite some effort to build a kind of on-line lilypond system, but the end results would be very nice.

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Postby emeraldimp » Thu Nov 01, 2007 2:28 pm

jhellingman wrote:Project Gutenberg has its Distributed Proofreaders project, (http://www.pgdp.net/), which allows people to fix OCR problems, or transcribe hard to OCR pages on line, one-page-at-a-time. We have been experimenting with music, but this has mainly been limited to small excerpts found in various books. For example, I've dealt with music in Carl Lumholz' "Unknown Mexico", a very valuable resource on Mexican ethnography (see http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/16426, the author died in 1922), where music was transcribed to ABC, and added as newly set scores, as well as small midi files.

A similar system could be set up for music scores. At PGDP we can handle several thousand pages per day, with about 5.000 active volunteers. Music is considerably more labor intensive to transcribe, but there is a huge public for it as well, especially if you develop systems where people can initially play the notes. I know it would take quite some effort to build a kind of on-line lilypond system, but the end results would be very nice.


I've actually considered what this would take before, and I suspect that, with PGDP's current setup, it wouldn't require extraordinary changes to do a Lilypond section (I have done some small research in this area, although it's been quite some time). As a related example, I have seen Lilypond integrated with Mediawiki before.

I think it's workable if: 1) you can get enough volunteers, either from DP or here, to make steady progress; and 2) it's broken into manageable chunks (for example, it used to take me about 2 minutes to P1 a page (and not much more for P2), but it can take me several hours to transcribe a page of music, which would occasionally be needed, even with the best available music OCR software, which might or might not be available).

If you want to continue this discussion, maybe we should break it into a different thread?

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Postby aslsp-fl » Thu Nov 01, 2007 10:47 pm

According to directive 93/98/EC, EU states can accord a protection to critical editions, but the protection cannot be longer than 30 years. So, it is quite unlikely that a 1967 edition of a public domain work is still copyrighted in Austria (unless it so extensive an arrangement to become a different work under the authorship of the arranger).

I would add that the editorial situation of many Universal Edition works is often elusive. They are known for making multiple editions of the same works, often mixing them up. I have been sent, say, an hire material for a Janacek work where the score and orchestra parts were the Mackerras revision and the piano score was the old edition (very very different, most written enharmonically and lacking some excerpts). Or, in another major case, I was sent half the choir parts of another opera in the old edition and half in the new (in this case, there were only ten minutes of different music between the two editions, and the sequences of musical numbers were different). This not to quote a Zemlinsky work where UE shipped a full score with a completely different orchestration from the orchestra set of parts.

I recognize that now they are getting better and the last years were relatively trouble free, but till, say, 1995, the fellows at the UE warehouse simply refused to acknowledge that their management was printing multiple editions of the same works and mixed them up. One of UE's most known composers told me personally he was considering changing publisher as they had botched so many of his performances by delivering mixed set of parts belonging to different redactions of the same title. - Please note that in a professional contest these accidents are not musicological discussions but potential disasters involving lost reharsal time and money.

In the case of Mahler first symphony, there are at least two "recent" edition by UE. You simply have to go to the page with the double bass solo; the very last critical edition (Wilkens) says it should be played by all contrabasses, the last but one (Ratz) but still very widely used and sold says it is a solo bass. I guess even people at UE would likely confuse the two.

The Dover edition is a copy of an earlier edition, and while it looks similar, it is quite different from the Ratz edition in orchestration.

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Postby Carolus » Thu Nov 01, 2007 11:37 pm

aslsp-fl, your posts continue to be most informative. We at IMSLP were not aware of this 93/98/EC directive, which means that even those critical editions published outside Germany, the UK and Italy are entitled to only 30 years of protection in Canada due to Canada's employment of Rule of the Shorter Term. Thus, on January 1, all critical editions published before 1978 are free in Canada. UE's case thus falls completely flat on this work. The piano arrangements by Bruno Walter (1876-1962) are not free in Canada and were hosted on the now-abandoned USA server.

I am fairly certain that the Mahler Symphony 1 score at IMSLP had a claim of 1967, which may have been the Ratz edition. However, if there were substantitial orchestrational differences between this score and the earlier UE score published in 1906, which itself had a fair number revisions by Mahler from the original 1898 publication, I am curious as to why they used the same engraving. Perhaps they had to re-engrave a few pages, but the critical score published in the 1960s and the 1906 score use the same plates for the most part. They have the same number of pages, too.

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Postby pml » Thu Nov 01, 2007 11:46 pm

Hi aslsp-fi,

aslsp-fl wrote:They are known for making multiple editions of the same works, often mixing them up. [...] Please note that in a professional contest these accidents are not musicological discussions but potential disasters involving lost reharsal time and money.


I agree. Indeed, I've been corresponding with some perfomers in the United States who have been sent incorrect, and essentially unusable, parts for a well-known Baroque score, who would have found themselves in the position of being unable to perform the entire work as a result. If you factor in losses from having to cancel rehearsals, venues, breaking contracts with soloists, wasted pre-publicity, etc., as well as, to add insult to injury, the cost of hiring what turned out to be the wrong instrumental parts, then you end up with a very expensive exercise with no possibility of recouping costs.

It might not be quite as damaging to an orchestra's finances and reputation to have usable, but incompatible or muddled parts, but it does lead to waste of precious rehearsal time, and thus is more likely to result in a mediocre performance since time has had to be used to correct the problems in the performance materials, rather than being able to get beyond the notes on the page and actually make music.

Regards, Philip

PS By the way, I wasn't aware that had been more critical work done on the Mahler scores since Ratz - how extensive is Wilkens' work?
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Postby aslsp-fl » Fri Nov 02, 2007 7:21 am

Please note that an European Union directive is not a law, it is a compulsory guideline to single countries lawmakers; it is enforced by local laws in single countries, so its application is never immediate as each single parliament must issue an application law, and sometimes national laws get to differ in important matters left undecided in the directive

For an overview of this matter:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Directive_ ... protection

(However, the whole directive has been reworded; the version now enforced at present is 2006/116/EC, text at:
http://eur-lex.europa.eu/smartapi/cgi/s ... hett&lg=en

see article 5 for critical editions.)

About the Wilkens edition, I have not compared it extensively against the Ratz edition, but it looks that the major difference is the question of the double bass solo. Early editions consider this passage as a real solo, Wilkens says it should be considered as a "collective solo" by the whole double bass section. This is never done in performance, however.

I will have a look, when I get some time, to the differences between the 1906 and the Ratz edition. The last time I tried to study the question I simple got tired of noting differences - phrases moved from violins to flutes or from horns to tubas. This has a practical meaning - the 1906 (Dover) scores matches the Kalmus performance material. One of the world major conductors uses this edition, while virtually all other conductors use the Universal. Sometimes, when performing the symphony with different conductors even at a short time distance, I must get two different orchestra materials.


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