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Old 5th December 2018
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Originally Posted by Ukiah Bass View Post
I agree with this premise. What about old music -- where the writer(s) is dead? Not so old as to fit into "Traditional" category. But new enough that a publisher is still collecting tolls?

As for "modern requirements," the old processes fit a world of sit-down meetings with lawyers, drafting agreements, negotiating fees etc. The modern world consists of more automated systems enabling minimum friction and maximum alacrity in implementing ideas and ultra rapid distribution. Numbers for the song writers could be (and possibly are) just as big in the new world. But why should this exclude "small time" operators who could pay what they're worth, which would be a pittance by comparison, but if implemented by electronic systems, could easily scale to fit everyone's needs -- and put in a commensurate amount of compensation. I don't see this as a zero sum game for song writers. If anything, it would be additive, bringing in revenue that would be uncapturable with old, manual processes.

Just trying to be open minded here. There are a lot of creative professions trying to figure out a way forward. Professionally, I am also a creator and have experienced the hammer of forces brought on by the internet. It's not going away. We just have to figure out what will work. What will NOT work is sticking our heads in the sand and insisting the old way is the best way.
The process that is now obtaining a synchronization license isn't up for debate. Libraries/Publishers that don't have hit songs can automate and scale because their assets are not worth much and the value is fluid. Publishers with hit songs can ask whatever they want. And why wouldn't it be this way? This is absolutely the best possible scenario for both copyright and recording owners. Total control over when, how, and for how much money their music property will be used.

As for old and new, many of the most expensive songs to license for a sync are old. Try licensing What a Wonderful World or Somewhere Over the Rainbow and prepare to have you legs wobble. There are entire estates that depend on these iconic songs. They are the inheritance passed down from father/mother to children and grandchildren. Are you saying they should scale the price of the license so people can cheapen the song's value by putting their song up sync'd to a cat video? If you are a professional creator, why would you try to cheapen or steal people's stuff? Having publishers and master owners try to protect their property and generate income isn't putting their heads in the sand.

If you went to license a bigger song you'd see that for the most part the process is automated, but the final agreement does have to be negotiated, and rightfully so.

There is one company and a handful of publishers/record labels that agree with your ideals- But if you want to do anything besides the basest of projects, yup, you jump right back into individually negotiating a license fee... and it ain't cheap.