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Creating Production Libraries for Television : Sample CD's Legal to Use?
Old 24th May 2006
Gear Nut
majool's Avatar

Creating Production Libraries for Television : Sample CD's Legal to Use?

I'm trying to put together a production library for a TV network and sussing out some legal stuff.

Just wondering if anyone knows if making a library of music/jingles (15/30 secs) that consists of samples from legally aquired Sample CDs is kosher or not. I'm sure it depends on which libraries are used, but most of them say something along the lines of "Ok to use for multimedia, tv, film..." yet they also say "may not be used to be sold as part of sample library/music library".

Seems to me you can make music that is sold to a station TV, but can't make a bunch of jingles using Sample CDs and license them out. Is this correct? Anyone have any input to share? What about if someone were hired by the company to 'compose' jingles using libraries, surely that is ok...? Is there any difference between using individual drum hits and using construction kits?

Thanks in advance. I know I should prob talk to a lawyer and email the companies (nobody responds!), but thought someone on here would have some info to at least clarify in the meantime.

Thanks in advance,

Old 24th May 2006
Gear Nut

It's definately cool if you paid for the license to use them. They just don't want you to resell the samples as your own. If they are part of your musical composition, then it's cool. Each sample CD manufacturer has their own license that you should check, but in general it's cool.
Old 24th May 2006
Gear Nut
majool's Avatar

Thanks for your reply. Since I posted a few minutes ago, I've been checking some more sites FAQs out some of them definitely read like this:

The sounds can be used royalty free by the purchaser of the downloads in any context except:

1. To make another sample/sound effect CD or database, even if the material has been manipulated.
2. To make production music/ library music.
3. Any sound file CD/database or multimedia sound library.
4. Any multimedia program or CD-rom that contains single or isolated sound files.

Guess production music/library music is out of the question. Just seems weird, that if I want to use a horn riff from a legally purchased sample CD on top of a groove that is sold as part of production library that it wouldn't be legal, but as part of a piece of music that gets licensed or produced for TV it would be. Guess its a fine line and almost comes down to semantics. If I produce an 'album' of short tracks that get licensed it is ok, but if I produce a library of short tracks it isn't. Hmm...
Old 24th May 2006
Gear Nut

Yes, I see the difference. I guess the difference comes down to you "selling" versus "licensing" the material. By selling it, you are giving other tv/media producers the rights to use it in any way they want I suppose. However, if you are an artist selling your own CDs with the samples in your compositions, then isn't that the same?

Seems kinda lame.

I think the Sony Loops have a very open policy with regards to this, but I'm not entirely sure.
Old 24th May 2006
Lives for gear
Led's Avatar
It is scemantics a bit, but definitions get read very broadly. It doesn't have anything to do with selling versus licensing. If they allowed you to make a music library you could just recompile say all the string samples from a sample disc on to another disc and call it a string music library and then resell it at a cheaper price. I guess they have to cover their @sses somehow. If they didn't let you use it in commissioned tracks then nobody would buy it. I remember when they first came out and they all said 'for demo purposes only' becuse they were all stolen from original recordings.
However - If you are being commissioned by the network to creat a body of work to which you are granting the network an exclusive licence to use in their productions, and this is not for general sale to the public, then I would consider the work you are creating a ''music package" as opposed to a "library". I am not a lawyer but have done a lot of commissioned work over the last 15 years as a composer and and dealt with a lot of copyright issues and that's the question I would be asking my lawyer. Make sure the music is referred to in any agreements as "the work" and that the definition in the agreement of "the work" says that it is a "music package" not a library.
Old 24th May 2006
Gear Nut
majool's Avatar

Yeah, does seem lame. I just checked out Spectrasonics and they're stuff is clear for use creating music libraries which is wicked news. Plus, they even make mention that this is kind of unusual and that most companies don't permit this.

Perhaps this would be a good thread for people to list companies that don't set this limitation?

I'll look into the Sony ones. Thanks for the tip!
I was PM'ed that licensing covers library production too (with some requirements)

Here is another company that offers 'special licenses' upon request:
7. Use of the sound samples in 'library music' (also known as 'music libraries'), which is relicensed to multiple third parties, is not permitted without first obtaining a separate License (subject to availability) from Licensor.
Old 24th May 2006
Gear Nut
majool's Avatar

Yeah, I guess they do have to cover their butts...I do to! If I'm grabbing some strings off a sample CD though and creating music with it, surely they wouldn't want to restrict that because as you said, nobody would buy their stuff.

It would be upsetting to find out after the fact though and get some email from a lawyer. Guess I should call them instead of writing, since I haven't got one response yet.
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