Skip to comments.Supreme Court: No royalties with Internet music downloads
Posted on 10/04/2011 3:14:11 PM PDT by TennesseeGirl
The Supreme Court let stand on Monday a ruling that a traditional Internet download of sound recording does not constitute a public performance of the recorded musical work under federal copyright law.
The justices refused to review a ruling by an appeals court in New York that the download itself of a musical work does not fall within the law's definition of a public performance of that work.
The not-for-profit American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) appealed to the Supreme Court. It said the ruling has profound implications for the nation's music industry, costing its members tens of millions of dollars in potential royalties each year.(Excerpted) http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44761240/ns/technology_and_science-tech_and_gadgets/t/supreme-court-no-royalties-internet-music-downloads/
(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...
At issue was a section of the Copyright Act stating that to perform a work means to recite, render, play, dance or act it either directly or by means of any device or process.
"Music is neither recited, rendered, nor played when a recording (electronic or otherwise) is simply delivered to a potential listener," the appeals court ruled."
SCOTUS to Napster, all is forgiven?
Finally, a bit of sanity in the digital domain...
Does that mean “Limewire” will be coming back?
Dinosaur Media DeathWatch
Yeah, the ASCAP line of reasoning seems a bit weird. Does the shipping of CDs to a Barnes and Noble constitute a performance? Please.
A FReeper for theft!
I wonder if that women that was sued for 250,000 will get her money back - if she ever paid.
I’m not a lawyer, so I’m confused. Does it mean that downloading any performance (music, video, and so on) is fair game now? I mean, following the judges’ reasoning, the artists are not performing since it’s only a playback of recording.
So please explain how a digital download is a public performance.
I’m dusting off my copy of eMule right now!
ASCAP, /aka/ ASSHAT, has been one of the most asinine bullies in the entire copyright fiasco. The first lie is that ASCAP is really a not-for-profit organization. ASCAP by refusing to acknowledge that the era of music you can hold in your hand is over, has done more to kill the rights of artists than they have ever done to protect them. Had they been thinking forward to a larger audience at a lower cost per unit, they probably would have avoided all this BS.
Now, we need to get those Judicial sticks-in-the-mud to decriminalize computer hacking money out of someone's bank account, right?
>> Finally, a bit of sanity in the digital domain...
> A FReeper for theft!
Not everyone on FR is here to help.
We also have trolls, RATs and others who do not prescribe to Freeper thinking.
You’d have to have a digital tap direct to the brain to even give you a chance of appreciating a digital download as a “performance”. Eventually we’ll have that but you won’t like it.
If it were private, you wouldn't know about it. Right?
Any person who creates anything is entitled to copyright protection for some period of years. Arguing that:
To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;doesn't apply to "digital downloads" is akin to suggesting that the Constitution doesn't provide for an Air Force.
Seems to me like this is a job for Congress—downloads would be protected by copyright laws if Congress changed the copyright law to reflect this.
So maybe you can explain how under “Freeper thinking” a download is a public performance. This court decision doesn’t say downloads are now free of copyright infringement claims.
They then invest their hard-earned money to record, mix & master that song to professional standards...
Then some stranger puts that song on a file sharing site and lots of people download it for FREE.
Screw the Capitalist who created & recorded the song, RIGHT FREEPERS?
The download doesn’t require paying a royalty as the law is written.
of course one must pay the royalty to play it after downloading it...
Here is the problem. Say instead of the dictaphone and phonograph being first, CDs were first, or better still the Internet existed first. There would never have been a production house bottleneck where someone could force a price on the buying of songs - so the current business model is defective. The air is everywhere and is therefore free. By analogy, in the digital world bits are everwhere and music (and information) are headed towards being free.
This is not fair, just as it is not fair that you can’t make a profit bottling air (unless it is for divers or air compressors).
Theft is theft.
No it was still a normal copyright violation. This was ASCAP trying to get extra money from legal digital downloads, saying it’s a public performance (the only time ASCAP ever comes into play, shows and jukeboxes basically).
This is great news for the consumer. If ASCAP and BMI had won, they could have jacked up the cost of a downloaded song to Whatever They Wanted.
I think people are misunderstanding. I think ASCAP was trying to double-dip. The artist gets a publishing royalty for the sale of a track online, but there’s also a separate royalty for performing the song. It sounds like they were trying to argue that the mere act of downloading a track purchased from Amazon or Itunes or whatever was a “performance” of the song. The court was saying that it was not.
That doesn’t legalize music piracy at all, it just means that there aren’t two payments due for the track.
Way to blatantly and foolishly misread the situation. This isn’t about illegal downloads, this is about ASCAP trying to horn extra money out of LEGAL downloads by declaring them to be something they aren’t. The artists will still get their normal pay for the sale of the goods, they just don’t get the performance royalty because it’s not a performance.
Pardon me, but no where in the Constitution does it say Air Force or digital downloads. Is there a new version I have missed?
Everybody stupidly throwing around the “theft” word needs to ACTUALLY READ THE ARTICLE. The guys that brought this all to court were Yahoo Inc and RealNetworks Inc. This has NOTHING to do with illegal file sharing and every time you act like it does you’re announcing that you’re ad idiot that didn’t bother to read the article.
They didn’t say that doesn’t apply to digital download. They said digital downloads aren’t performances. Read the article.
ASCAP was wanting a royalty for DELIVERING music to the customer. So what you are arguing for is akin to making Amazon pay a royalty for selling the music then paying another royalty for UPS to deliver the CD to your home but in this case instead of UPS its downloaded via the Internet.
This ruling has nothing to do with royalties for sale of a recording.
Don’t interupt him. He’s on a roll. Apparently, reading the actual ruling without leaping in logic eludes many here.
Read it again. It doesn’t say that. They only ruled on whether it constituted a “public” performance. No one’s copyright is being annulled.
If I misunderstood the decision forgive me. I can’t tell you how many people I know who believe downloading songs, or books or movies from file sharing sites should be legal & free, and the consequences to the artists should be irrelevant.
Uh wow. A man listening to a song in his home is not a public performance. Some people are so intent on defending RIAA/MPAA they lose their common sense.
This has nothing to do with file sharing sites. This started because Yahoo and Real Network thought the fees they were being told to pay were in correct. People on this thread, and you’re no where near the only one, are assuming “digital download” must be illegal sharing, probably because 99% of the time that phrase is in the news it is. This is the other 1%, ASCAP is trying to define legal downloads as performances. ASCAP has nothing to do with sales (or theft for that matter), they are entirely about getting royalties from performances.
Whatever law governs copying would govern a digital download. The money was there for ASCAP — they would stand to profit by such acts of copying being called performances — but unfortunately the logic wasn’t there. If Congress wishes to set up a royalty system for such copying, parallel to broadcast licensing, it is free to do so. ASCAP should go cry to Congress that the copyright law is in the stone age.
You look like a fool. Do you think the USSC would even come close to annulling copyright per se?
how does that relate to the copyright of the artist on the music?
my thoughts are... change artist to programmer and music to software... is the ‘performance’ only the first moment the compiler produces the binary? after all, running a program would be akin to playing back music
this seems a bit whacked (maybe i’m just not understanding)
and how does this effect itunes? would apple now be able to ‘sell’ the music without having to pay royalties??
“Finally, a bit of sanity in the digital domain...
A FReeper for theft!”
A lot of us aren’t all that happy about being SCREWED big-time by the labels...particularly when the cassettes were the only way to have portable music. They sold their music on tapes that were total crap, knowing that they would fall apart after so many uses (yea, I know, technically I didn’t have to buy them...but they could have put 25 cents more into the product).
Now it’s payback time.
If the supreme court rules what she did was not illegal - how can that not affect it.
Dang, a complete misconception, you cannot steal and make money off of someones art without paying them.
There's a real problem in the use of current technology when it comes to copies ~ they really can't be controlled short of community spies and totalitarian torture chambers.
probably be best for "artists" and their marketing buddies to figure out how to vend their stuff in a technology where copies aren't easily made.
Not the same thing as the Napster issue. Downloading music can be done legally on numerous websites such as amazon.com This does not legalize theft of music. It finds that the mere act of downloading the song is not a public performance - just as the shipment of CDs is not a public performance.
Will Wally World bring back their digital download service?
So I take it streaming would be a performance, but a download would not?