Is MeFi music Creative Commons? June 22, 2008 6:48 PM   Subscribe

MeFi Music Uploading - Creative Commons license, please? Possible to replace or delete an uploaded song?

I am about to upload my first humble song to MeFi music, and do not see anything protecting songs from commercial exploitation, or explaining about copyrights.

Also, because this is for the music challenge, I'm uploading a slightly rough mix, and would like to clobber it if I have the time to fiddle with it some more before the end of June. Or what if we change our minds completely and want to yank a tune?

I'm uploading the song, but would like to know these basics for any future attempts.
posted by AppleSeed to MetaFilter Music at 6:48 PM (20 comments total)

Users uploading recordings to Music retain whatever copyright they have: barring any specific word from you otherwise, your recording is presumed to be copyright you. If you want to declare it CC or public domain or some such, you're welcome to do so explicitly in the post, of course.

We'd rather not delete posts after the fact if at all possible. If you're uploading a rough mix and you come away with a better finished product in the long run, you could either do a new post if it's a significant difference or maybe just mention and link to the newer version in the original thread if it doesn't quite seem worth a post. Folks have posted revisions now and then in the past, and it's fine in moderation.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:03 PM on June 22, 2008


I had a situation recently where I uploaded a song, only to notice an oversight I'd made in the mixing process, the next day. I'd also love an option to update a file with a new version.
posted by Devils Rancher at 7:06 PM on June 22, 2008


On preview, oh hello, Cortex.
posted by Devils Rancher at 7:07 PM on June 22, 2008


Devils Rancher, you can always send us your updated file if you have just one small problem with it a day later and we can update your current post.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:17 PM on June 22, 2008


do not see anything protecting songs from commercial exploitation, or explaining about copyrights.

In the footer of all the sites here you'll see "All posts are © their original authors." As with text postings on mefi, you own whatever you upload, retaining full copyright. By default it's an all-rights-reserved copyright, which gives you the most rights possible and basically only lets people play the songs on the mefi music page.

Neither full copyright or CC licenses are total safeguards against someone commercially exploiting your songs -- both just give you a legal leg to stand on if you want to ask someone to stop (or fight them in court), but nothing prevents some dork from grabbing your song and tossing it into a TV commercial tomorrow.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 7:22 PM on June 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


That was fast, and answers my questions. There are MetaFilter songs that are good enough to be stolen (mine not among them!). I hope I don't sound paranoid, but I have heard a few cautionary stories about commercial rip-offs; maybe add a link to CC on the posting page in case folks have not heard of it?
posted by AppleSeed at 7:32 PM on June 22, 2008


I'm not sure I get the CC angle, AppleSeed. Creative Commons and copyright are equally vulnerable to outright theft.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:40 PM on June 22, 2008


Though it has certain advantages, Creative Commons is explicitly not designed to protect copyright holders.
posted by dhammond at 10:51 PM on June 22, 2008


I have heard a few cautionary stories about commercial rip-offs; maybe add a link to CC on the posting page in case folks have not heard of it?

Yeah, the All Rights Reserved default copyright offers more protection than CC, it's just that CC plainly says stuff like "no commercial use allowed" but know that default copyright covers that (and a bunch of other rights) already.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:52 PM on June 22, 2008


Creative Commons relies on ordinary copyright law for the protections it offers, so a "no commercial use" CC license is really an "all rights reserved, except amateur use" copyright license.
posted by cillit bang at 1:08 AM on June 23, 2008


"There are MetaFilter songs that are good enough to be stolen".

I steal the bad ones too. Boxed set in stores soon.
posted by nthdegx at 2:32 AM on June 23, 2008 [2 favorites]


I steal the bad ones too. Boxed set in stores soon.

Listen kid, lemme tell ya somethin'... I know you're fulla big dreams and even bigger expectations, but, that shit ain't gonna sell kid. I just don't wanna see ya get hurt. So why don'tcha get outta this record biz now, and go back to the farm back in Idaho, huh? Folks're always gonna need potatoes. This "MeFi Music"? Not so much.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:23 AM on June 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure I get the CC angle, AppleSeed. Creative Commons and copyright are equally vulnerable to outright theft.

CC is not an alternative to copyright: CC is based on copyright laws. What CC is is a copyright license which give you various degrees of permission from the copyright owner to copy, modify, commercially exploit etc. a copyrighted work. (As opposed to all rights reserved by the copyright owner.)

As a practical matter, no one under 30 gives a damn about any kind of copyright and they steal without conscience whatever they can get their digital mitts on, but that shouldn't stop us adults from trying to respect each other's rights.
posted by three blind mice at 4:34 AM on June 23, 2008 [1 favorite]


I generally make a point of indicating copyright in small print with every song I post to MeFi Music. But it's not because I'm not aware of the blanket default copyright that exists for all posts here. It's more for that, you know, extra sense of iron-clad protection that a vulnerable artist needs in this den of thieves known as the internet...

And it's also to piss off the knee-jerk, 'copyright-is-more-evil-than-Hitler' crowd. I'm so sick of those people.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:37 AM on June 23, 2008


"I steal the bad ones too."

You keep your hands off my back catalog!
posted by Eideteker at 6:26 AM on June 23, 2008


What CC is is a copyright license which give you various degrees of permission from the copyright owner to copy, modify, commercially exploit etc.

Yeah, no, I dig all that. My question to AppleSeed is just how that fits in with the voiced maybe-paranoia comment re: song theft. Is the suggestion that we link to CC on the posting page to let people know it exists, or that we link to it on Music front page itself, to, uh, remind potential CC-misunderstanding mp3-grabbers of the limitations of CC? Or what?

I like CC as an idea and more power to anyone who wants to release their music under it, but I don't really know what's being asked here, is what I'm saying.
posted by cortex (staff) at 6:42 AM on June 23, 2008


Though it has certain advantages, Creative Commons is explicitly not designed to protect copyright holders.

Are you sure you know what you're talking about? Because it sounds like you don't.
posted by odinsdream at 12:17 PM on June 23, 2008


Thanks for this. I've been waiting to post some songs, but I'm a bit worried about them getting stolen by some Col. out there with his Bo Bice/Elvis ready to take my songs to the top of the charts. Now I know that's not possible.*


Can we flat out say Copyright 2008 Name of my music publisher?


*actually already knew my songs were not going to top of any charts.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:00 AM on June 24, 2008


You can say anything you like*; it's your post.

*please don't try to come up with practical counterexamples. I believe you, they exist.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:54 AM on June 24, 2008


Ironmouth, I've just returned from Tajikistan, where your songs have sailed to the top of the charts. The kids are dancing to your ditties in the discos of Dushanbe. You've probably already earned enough money there (local unit of currency, of course, is the Somoni, but you probably knew that) to become the president of the country. Congratulations, man!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:55 PM on June 24, 2008


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