Friday, April 20, 2012

Musings in the Music Library #5 - Copyright

Another vignette in a series that was sent by a fellow librarian, Daniel Neal from the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra Library in a mail to the SABC Music Library and the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra Library.

"Copyright is for the protection of the creator, an esoteric subdivision of legalities that makes Peace in the Middle East quite straightforward by comparison.  
As an introduction, South Africa and Canada recognize copyright as Death (of the creator, author, composer etc) plus Fifty years.  The European Union is now Death + 70, and the United States, in some applications and from certain dates, is Death + 90.  Even if you are a South African entity (like CPO) and you want to hire something out of copyright in South Africa for performance in South Africa, you may have to pay copyright because the Country of Origen of the Hired Material has a longer post-death law in place.  After this, it gets really complicated.  
For those audience members who despair at the relative lack of “modern” (that is, post 1930) music in concert programmes, I do ask that they judge CPO not too harshly.  
At time of writing the average fee for hiring copyright music is R300 per performance minute plus VAT plus Air Freight (usually from the UK), and that is just too expensive.  
Even if all the composers considered are long passed away, their publishing heirs can price their works right off the concert platform."

Related posts:

Musings in the Music Library #4

Musings in the Music Library #3

Musings in the Music Library #2

Musings in the Music Library #1

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