EU audio art project & intellectual property - how to navigate?
September 17, 2019 10:54 AM   Subscribe

What obligations do I have with respect to copyrighted works included in an audio art project that will be submitted to festivals or broadcast in the EU?

I'm working on an audio art project with a friend. It revolves primarily around an interview with someone about a personal true story.

The recording will happen in the EU, and one of our goals is to submit it to some EU audio art festivals. We assume that if we want to include copyrighted audio tracks that there's some process we need to go through, but we don't know what that process is.

The recording and festivals would be in Germany to start, if that makes a difference.

Do we need to worry about licensing or just attribution? Who do we need to talk to about this? The rights holders? The authors of the works? Some agency (I think there's something in Germany)?

Any suggestions would be helpful, thanks!!
posted by jpziller to Media & Arts (5 answers total)
We assume that if we want to include copyrighted audio tracks that there's some process we need to go through,

Like, you want to use music? For every song, you need to contact the rights holder, request permission (which can be denied), and negotiate a fee.
posted by DarlingBri at 10:58 AM on September 17, 2019 [1 favorite]

Yes, to clarify it would be music. Sorry for not being more specific.
posted by jpziller at 10:59 AM on September 17, 2019

SongTrust Might be a place to start. Music rights are very complicated.
posted by Ideefixe at 11:12 AM on September 17, 2019

Just from a quick websearch I would suggest starting with GEMA, which seems to be the German music licensing organization. They also seem to be members of a couple of larger EU rights organizations and could probably provide some guidance beyond Germany.
posted by soundguy99 at 12:15 PM on September 17, 2019

Rights in a sound recording may be owned by a record label or artist. Rights in the musical composition recorded (including the lyrics) are separate. (For Germany, GEMA represents the songwriters.) What you need to find out, and what the festivals/broadcasters should be able to tell you, is whether you need to clear your music with one or both sets of rights-holders. Good luck!
posted by in278s at 5:04 PM on September 17, 2019 [2 favorites]

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