Using Songs On Your Vlog Without Violating The Law

Posted on: 2 May 2016

More and more people are creating vlogs to connect with audiences around the world. Adding music to your vlog (video blog) can be a great way to make it more appealing, but it's important that you are careful not to infringe on the rights of the artists responsible for the creative content contained within a piece of music.

Here are three tips that you can use to ensure that your use of music doesn't violate copyright laws.

1. Stick to the oldies, but goodies.

One of the easiest ways to avoid legal complications when posting music on your vlog is to stick to songs that are considered public domain. Any song with a copyright notice that is dated 1922 or earlier is no longer protected by copyright laws.

This expiration of the copyrights makes a song public domain, which means that it can be used without paying the authors for the rights to do so. If you aren't sure when the copyright notice for a song you are interested in using was posted, you can consult an intellectual property law attorney for assistance.

2. Obtain permission to use copyrighted material.

If you need to use a song that is currently protected by copyright law to help fulfill your creative vision, it can be helpful to obtain the assistance of a qualified intellectual property law attorney. These lawyers will be able to help you obtain permission from the artist(s) holding the copyright to use the song on your vlog.

An artist can either grant you permission to use the song within a limited scope for free, request that you pay royalties for the use of the song, or deny your request altogether. An attorney will give you the best chance at negotiating an affordable limited use agreement when you want to incorporate music into your creative online video materials.

3. Altering a song doesn't make it safe to use.

Many online vloggers think that altering the pitch of a copyrighted song or eliminating the vocals and using only an instrumental version can be a good way to get around copyright laws. It's important that you recognize that these actions don't exempt you from following copyright protocol when it comes to using music in your online video content.

A copyright holder could still sue you for infringement, even if the version of the protected song you are using has been altered in some way.

If you want to make sure that incorporating music into your online vlogging activities doesn't land you in serious legal trouble, consult with an intellectual property attorney before including music in your public videos. For more information, contact Lingbeck Law Office or a similar firm.