How do you feel about music copyrights?

Music copyright issues have been in the new of late, with the RIAA and music labels looking for stricter laws, and many consumer groups looking for more slack. What are your feelings about copyright when it comes to music?

How do you feel about music copyrights?
Need to be far stronger
7% (10 votes)
Need to be a little stronger
7% (10 votes)
They're just right
24% (32 votes)
Need to be a little looser
27% (36 votes)
Need to be a lot looser
24% (32 votes)
Music should not be copyrighted
11% (15 votes)
Total votes: 135

Al Earz's picture

I really beleive that the consumer should have the option to record a CD for his or her personnal use. I don't believe that copies should be made for sale, and I am sympathetic to the industry's issues with that. But the honest buyer should not be penalized for the actions of others. Should I be able to photocopy an article out of Stereophile to show a friend a reveiw I liked? No, not when it is out of print and it is just a portion of the magazine. Once an item is purchased, doesn't it belong to the buyer?

John Rau's picture

I'm not quite sure who the copyright belongs to—is it the artist or the publisher? One thing is certain. It doesn't belong to the person who is downloading it for free!

Dave Bennett's picture

I beleive artists should be paid for their work. I therefore beleive that downloading music for free is stealing. I do think, however, that once I've bought a CD, I should be allowed to transfer that CD to another medium, for listening in the car for example. This is what the present copyright allows me to do.

audio-sleuth's picture

It's hard to sell people something, like your music, while you are calling them thieves.

DB's picture

I think that after a reasonable period of time, say 20 years, songs should enter the public domain. If a song is no longer available for sale, it should also be okay to "file share" it.

Woody Battle's picture

No one should have the right to make a profit off of someone else's music. But, once you have legally purchased music in any form, you should be free to do anything you want for you own personal use.

Mauro Mello Jr.'s picture

I believe copyright provides protection for the artistic effort and endeavor, but there have been changes to institutions and technology that have introduced unforeseen changes to the way creative output of any kind is used. However, several interest groups' (and not only record labels) efforts to tighten copyright protection work at the expense of users' rights, and the net result is not good. A few interest groups will be a great deal better off (do not count artists in this group, by the way); artists will be purportedly better off —although don't bet your money on it—while the vast majority of end users will be a lot worse off than they already are. And this is not only on the artistic side of things; whole technological advances may be affected because of a few interest groups' greed and the inability to bring their business model to the twenty-first century, or close enough.

ampsarus's picture

Musicians need to find new jobs to make money. Music should be free. Then when all of the musicians are working instead of making music, where will be no music. Wait, let me back up....

Stephen Curling's picture

The RIAA should chill the hell out and consumers shouldn't be giving out their MP3 collections. It's going to take some effort on both sides for this problem to go away. Enough said.

Graeme Nattress's picture

Copyright in general needs to last a reasonable amount of time. As a creative person I need an incentive to produce more copyrighted works, and having old ones run out in my lifetime will see to that. Fair use needs to be properly codified into law as a set of user rights that balance copyrights in such a way that commercial copyright theft (ie piracy) is stopped, but non-commercial copying of copyright material for personal use, (ie iPod, backups, vinyl to CD) is not only legal, but encouraged.

kerem's picture

it is all about money rite? as long as money is the first issue and music the second, no more elegant the whole thing is...

Michael Paquet's picture

If I can copy a movie on my VCR, why can't I copy a CD or download music? I am not aware of any instances of the movie industry prosecuting private individuals for copying a movie at home for their personal use.

Mannie Smith's picture

I selected "Just right," but I don't really know the law. What I do know is that ideas, music, writings, etc, once copyrighted or patented, need to be protected from theft, even if this requires the use of devices such as CD-protection schemes.

JP's picture

iTunes has a decent balance for "fair use." Apple still needs a "high-resolution" download option, however.

CubsFan56's picture

The existing laws are okay, it's the enforcement of the existing laws that's causing a lot of the contention.

Al Marcy's picture

Information is free. Only business thinks everything must have a price. Dimwits.

GUD2BDP in DC's picture

Music copyright laws are adequate in their current state. The "problem" is enforcement. If laws are not enforced, they are ineffective as tools to control behavior.

Anonymous's picture

Music Industry has to much power over people and they do nothing to provide the good music. Most of the talented musicians have no access to the listeners, until they post it on line. We wouldn't know about them without the Internet and download services. What kind of music we have today, comparing to seveties? lots of crap provided by Big Labels (Big Brothers). They just care about their profits. They are destroying the music.

Reed O.  Hardy's picture

Without debating who benefits (artist or recording companies) the producers of a product should get reimbursed for their product. Otherwise, there will be no incentive to produce new product.

Norman L.  Bott's picture

A real important issue is copyright renewal. I do not believe that any music or movie should have copyright extentions.

mcd.'s picture

Personally, I don't mind the idea of music copyrights, but the idea of allowing them to impair software is extremely troubling. Give the muscians fair ownership and wages, but don't punish the people who are paying the money to hear the efforts of the artisit.

David Schwartz's picture

I think that copyrights need to be strong, but within reason. I certainly don't think that a hybrid SACD/CD with Red Book, SACD stereo, and SACD multichannel should generate triple royalties. Also, once I buy a piece of music I should be allowed to make a copy for my car or for listening to on my PC.

Larry J's picture

I don't mind these so long as there is adequate protection for fair use of copyrighted material.

Mark D's picture

Suing 12-year-olds—you tell me.

David L.  Wyatt jr.'s picture

I number both musicians and writers among my friends, so I have a keen appreciation of how few artists actually make a living from their art. Artists deserve to be paid for what they do, and have their rights protected. But the solution to that is not the use of copy-protection schemes that pros will always crack, or hammering downloads that research shows actually lead to purchases. The music industry needs to use sense, not paranoia.

macksman's picture

Leave it alone. No, I meant to say: "Loose Mr. Ashcroft and Mr. Valenti on them. Add code to the software. Throw those file sharers, music pirates and movie thieves into prisons. Sieze their equipment! Levy heavy fines and penalties! Amend the Constitution if possible!" The problem for content producers then becomes simple. With all the aficionados locked up, bereft of gear and impoverished, to whom are they going to sell?

suits_me's picture

I don't have a philosophical problem with reasonable copyright laws—unlike some people—but I object to formats relating mostly to the expiration of Red Book royalties, to industry CD price fixing or apparent gouging, to the majority of artists not getting much compensation, and to attempts at getting anti-piracy provisions put in post 9/11 anti-terror legislation. So, it is pleasing to watch self- or indie-publishing, competition from other media, and file sharing (reportedly) diminish the recording companies. Perhaps Mr. Valenti should move to an entertainment product with a richer revenue model, such as the soon to be locked out NHL. Just a helpful suggestion....

Craig's picture

I am not really knowledgeable about the fine details of the current copyright laws. I certainly think, however, that copyrighting of a persons musical creations is reasonable. From what I understand many many people feel otherwise and have no reservations about making as many digital copies of any piece that they want to from any source they can get their hands on. I don't know if better enforcement of existing laws is the answer or if stronger laws are needed. Which ever is the case it would seem something or combinations of things (education, jailtime or whatever) needs to be used to stem the wholesale stealing of artists copyrighted works.

Bill Bostancic's picture

The artists work very hard at thier craft and deserve a just reward for thier efforts. I don't think anyone who reads Stereophile works for free.

Paul J.  Stiles, Mtn.View, CA's picture

Music copyrights should be for the benefit of the artist, not big multinational corporations that regard the consumer as just fools to be milked for their money and who have no fair use rights. The RIAA is whining about file sharing and copyright abuse because they are suffering financially because they are putting out overpriced junk.