Friday, December 23, 2016

Copyright protection only works if you have money.

I just received a "Certificate of Registration" from the Library of Congress confirming the my recent copyright submission has been certified. This legal document protects me from anyone infringing upon my rights as the owner of MY music. Or does it? The truth is that anyone can steal your music without your permission and without compensation. It is up to you to pay a lawyer to go after them. Let's say a record comes out with one of your songs on it. You didn't give the artists permission, and your name is not on the credits, and even though you know the album has sold a few copies, you don't see any evidence that the song is credited to you in any way. You check ASCAP, BMI, etc. and you see nothing. You contact the artists and they admit (sort of) the over site (theft), but so what. Everywhere this song exists has only the artists name in the credits and nothing has changed in your or their ASCAP and BMI accounts. You then contact a lawyer. Well, lawyers want to be paid, and they will not take this case on contingency, as the artist is unknown and the album hasn't sold enough to make it worth their time. If you had deep pockets you could pay the lawyer up front and pursue it out of principal only, as their will be no money after you pay your legal fees. As much as it kills you, you have to hope the artist's stolen version of your song is successful. That's the only way you will see justice.