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Morphagene + Sampling Public Domain Material = Legal?
MUFF WIGGLER Forum Index -> Production Techniques  
Author Morphagene + Sampling Public Domain Material = Legal?
ayruos
So the one thing that has me fascinated for the last week or so is running voices, dialogues and speeches through my Morphagene and using them with the rest of my rack.

I (kinda) understand copyright laws on sampling, I think - I basically can't use anything without permission, I get it.

But I've mostly been grabbing stuff off archive.org, things like the NASA recordings or librivox audio books, both of which are tagged as public domain.

Here's the question, is it fine for me to use this audio material without getting into any sort of trouble if I plan to release them/put them up on Bandcamp or something?
diller
Public Domain is not subject to any copyright laws.
kcd06
Public domain isnt always freely available. Aside from harassment by companies like disney or universal media who decide that they own everything, you also would need to ensure that not only is the subject of whatever you are sampling is public domain (ex: Palestrina or WA Mozart), but the performance of the work you are sampling from is also public domain. This is what enabled the movie, "Its a Wonderful Life" to be pulled out of public domain and back into protected IP; the copyright of the film was allowed to lapse by the rights holders, but, a piece of incidental music heard in the film was still protected and through sufficient lawfare the movie was re-privatized.
unrecordings
The NASA thing is quite interesting because an awful lot of moon landing related samples you might hear in recordings from the 90's by British acts are actually nicked from a BBC documentary. In the background you can hear Brian Eno...
trop
unrecordings wrote:
The NASA thing is quite interesting because an awful lot of moon landing related samples you might hear in recordings from the 90's by British acts are actually nicked from a BBC documentary. In the background you can hear Brian Eno...


do you happen to know what documentary it was? I'd be interested in watching that
unrecordings
trop wrote:
unrecordings wrote:
The NASA thing is quite interesting because an awful lot of moon landing related samples you might hear in recordings from the 90's by British acts are actually nicked from a BBC documentary. In the background you can hear Brian Eno...


do you happen to know what documentary it was? I'd be interested in watching that


Funnily enough it was relatively easy to google:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/For_All_Mankind

Must have been shown on the BBC a short while after release
flts
There are actually two very separate questions - is sampling something legal, and regardless of that can you get into trouble by doing so.

For the first question, if it's in public domain or has a permissive enough license (eg. some of the CC licenses) attached, you can feel relatively safe that it's free to sample. There are always exceptions to everything of course, but they are quite unlikely in this case.

For the second question: as an alternative/independent artist releasing something via Bandcamp (eg. not a high profile artist selling a lot of records), unless you're sampling something immediately recognizable for the group of people listening to the style of music you make, it's pretty amazing if anyone recognizes the sample in the first place... and practically impossible to get into trouble because someone who represents the rights holder happens to stumble upon your work, recognize the sampled piece of music, and bother to make a case of it.

Ie. in practise, for someone that is either not an estabilished artist in the scene, or is making music that only a small group of people are keen on, it's enough of a trouble to actually get more than a handful of people to listen to your music in the first place. The danger of getting into any kind of trouble for using a sample that is assumed to come from a source that is OK to use is close to zero - and in case of an uncleared sample that should not be OK to use, still very minimal. Whether you consider it OK yourself or not.
trop
unrecordings wrote:
trop wrote:
unrecordings wrote:
The NASA thing is quite interesting because an awful lot of moon landing related samples you might hear in recordings from the 90's by British acts are actually nicked from a BBC documentary. In the background you can hear Brian Eno...


do you happen to know what documentary it was? I'd be interested in watching that


Funnily enough it was relatively easy to google:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/For_All_Mankind

Must have been shown on the BBC a short while after release


looks pretty cool, thank you!! headbang
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