The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #93588   Message #1806493
Posted By: Homeless
10-Aug-06 - 02:11 PM
Thread Name: Music Industry Goes After Guitar Tablature Sites
Subject: RE: Music Industry Goes After Guitar Tablature Sit
I read threads like this and am stunned at some of the ideas presented. As musicians I would think that you'd have a better understanding of the purpose of copyright law. Do you not realize that copyright was created to protect the originator of an artistic work? The way to (financially) protect the artist is give him, or his assignees, exclusive rights to reproduce that work. The decision to allow others to duplicate (perform, record) a work is entirely up to the artist, or assignee.
Having umpteen dozen (lesser) reproductions of a work floating around will (in theory) make the original less valuable. Chief Chaos really nailed it when he wrote "There's nothing like hearing a totally ruined version of an old favorite."

One of the big mistakes I see here is the mindset that artistic works belong to the public. Legally, in the US, the composition belongs to the artist. The artist decides whether it is sold, or left to die. The theory of "if you can't buy it, it should be free" is ludicrus. I'd like to see you walk into a museum and lift any of the not-for-sale paintings off the wall. The composer has put their heart, sweat, and soul into this work, why do you think you deserve any piece of it? "I agree that if they won't make it readily available (at a reasonable price and simple legal agreement)then it should be free." Oooh, I would love if this were true. Since the price on either a Lexus or Beemer isn't reasonable, I've love to be driving one for free.

"Try your local used book store or library. They can't get you for scanning it in to your compooper." Wrong. Electronic copying, include scanning, is a violation of copyright law. If you open to the first page of the book you'll probably find a notice to that effect. Just because they probably wouldn't track you down doesn't mean they can't.

"these folks aren't making money from their interpretation" That doesn't matter one bit in terms of copyright. Because they are providing it, especially if it's free, it is (again, theoretically) taking potential profits away from the artist. The artist has exclusive right to copy his (her) work. Whether the third party violator is making money is irrelevant. For those of you who have released CDs, what would your opinion be of someone who bought one, made a thousand copies, then just gave them away to people who came to your concerts?

"I agree with musicians and writers being compensated for their work, but, just how long should they be paid? For almost any other job you get paid once. That's it." And musicians are only getting paid once - once for each copy of each CD sold, once for each performance. Granted they are playing the same thing repeatedly, but what job doesn't do that? Do you think a plumber does something totally new and unique each time he cleans out a sink? What about an assembly line worker? Aren't they getting paid over and over for doing one job? It's supply and demand. As long as a song is in demand, the artist should get paid.

"you're supposed to pay for it again?" Yes, you didn't buy the music. You didn't even buy the rights to the music. What you bought was a physical media with physical limitations. You were liscensed the music on it, to listen to for the duration that the media held out. (In fact, most of the CDs in my collection say "Liscensed by..." and "All Rights Reserved" right on the disk.) Can you name me another industry that replaces its goods at no cost twenty years after the original purchase? Off the top of my head, I can't think of any manufacturers other than Snap-On and Craftsman that have an unconditional lifetime guarantee.

Why do you complain about the cost of a music book? Would you expect to pay the same amount to buy a fish and to have someone teach you how to fish? This isn't just dots - this is someone's brainchild that they are basically giving away. So it costs $28. Big whoop. Once you learn the song, how many times are you gonna play it? Once? Ten times? Once a year for the next twenty years? If so it's only cost you $1.40 each time you play it. Play more often, it costs even less. If this song isn't worth the $28, why do you want to play it at all?

Copyright is not solely for musicians, but applies to all artists - auditory, visual, or otherwise. Granted when it was written it was not intended for huge corporations, but that's frequently who the rights have been assigned to. As with any general rule, it's not perfect, but for all the different mediums it has to apply to, it does a decent job of outlining the protections. And if you think about it, it was devised specifically to protect against people like many of those on this thread.