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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Recording/Synchronizing/Using Music From id Software Projects

Originally posted on bpmusic.com on 3/6/2009:
I make videos, instructional videos showing how to do various things with various programs. I would like to have music playing in the background, and the first music I thought was songs from DooM's sound track. I need to have your permission to use the music, so can I use your music in my videos?

The music will be quiet, but loud enough to recognize it. If anybody asks what the music is, I will tell them and provide a direct link to your website.

So may I use your songs in my videos?

You need to contact id Software regarding the use of music from any of their projects. If you are using a recording of the music, you also need permission from the owner of that recording.

It's easy to make your own recording of a song and sell it. The law says you have to advise the owner of the copyright to the music that you are going to mechanically reproduce the song, AND you have to pay a statutory fee for each copy of the recording sold. Right now that's 9.1 cents.

But, you want to synchronize the music to video. That has no statutory fee and the song's copyright holder can refuse to let you use the music or can charge you whatever he/she wishes.

Further, to synchronize an existing recording of a song in any project, you have to have permission of the copyright owner for the recording, and you usually have to pay that copyright owner a fee which he/she sets.

I have heard that to use "Happy Birthday" in a movie, on TV, in a music video -- any synchronizing of the song, it's a flat rate of $10k per use. To record it, it's only the 9.1 cents per copy sold. Big difference when synchronization of music to video/film) comes into play.

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