[advocacy] Question on Personal License

Daniel James daniel at mondodesigno.com
Thu Oct 25 14:14:11 PDT 2001

> I think the problem with Personal License is it is too
> individual-oriented and it might prevent artists from
> getting money through the third companies.

If the artist is happy to allow third parties to OK the use of tracks 
in commercial projects, collect royalties etc. then they can modify 
the licence to suit that. Most small record labels probably have 
someone responsible for arranging licensing.

> However, to make an equal contract,
> the power of individuals and that of organisations
> should also be equal.

In reality artists have always been the junior partner in any deal - 
this licence does reverse that somewhat.

> I haven't heard of an example of artists at MP3
> claimed stop downloading from there or not to share
> their music.  Copyright laws admit their rights to
> claim but they won't. 

That's because mp3.com is an artist-led site where people upload 
their own files. It's when third parties give the same publicity to 
artists that the content industry asks 'where's my percentage?'

> In general, there are many contradictions in
> laws but lawsuits happen only when interests
> contradict. 

and when the artist can afford a team of lawyers. Only rich artists 
can take on a firm like Sony - George Michael did it.

> Then, again, why should artists take Personal License
> over the combination of copyright and Music License?

Because they recognise that the current copyright position is 
anachronistic, and that their record company's refusal to make the 
most of the internet is making them less famous than they might be?

Copyright was designed to protect capital investment in tangible, 
solid items - first books, then sound recordings. Not to stop people 
listening to music, made of free air.


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