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Old 09-06-2017, 01:40 PM   #1
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Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

I want to use a line of film dialogue as a sample (not the alien one but similar). Assuming that this is protected by copyright, how practical is it actually to get clearance to use this?

I assume completely impractical, as I would expect the copyright holder (if I could identify them) to either ignore me or say no (or, if I was famous, quote me a large fee).

I ask this in a new thread because I noticed that most other similar threads were just about whether use of such a sample was indeed breach of copyright. I'm assuming it is.

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Old 09-06-2017, 03:40 PM   #2
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Theoretically you should find infos about who's the holder of the copyright. In case of music , a search on the most probable collecting societies would be a good first step, but in the case of movies might be harder. Just to ask, do you plan to sell the song or trying to earn money from it? Releasing it as a bootleg or free download it shouldn't be a concern.

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Old 09-06-2017, 03:40 PM   #3
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Your assumptions seem pretty accurate.

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Old 09-06-2017, 03:44 PM   #4
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Yeah..basically, if you didn't create / record it yourself, then it belongs to somebody else..unless we're talking about Creative Commons stuff..but that's a totally different kettle of fish, as they say.

When it comes to movies..and you want to legally use something from one..then be prepared to pay out for the privilege..and it usually isn't cheap. That said, how much can depend on how famous the line/s are and how big a movie it was / is.

Try looking over the [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
site..there's a lot of reading to be done there, but it's well worth taking the time to understand how it all works and just where you stand. There's other sites out there that deal with this area, but I can't remember them off the top of my head.

Also try to get your hands on a copy of "Media Law for Producers" by Philip Miller..you can get the paper back version over on [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
for just under €45, while the hardback version sells for much more..around €112. All books from that site are shipped "postage free".

If you don't mind secondhand..then try the likes of eBay instead, where you'll find some copies selling for as low as a €5.00..plus postage.

"Media Law for Producers" explains in detailed lay terms, many of the legal issues a producer is going to have to deal with in the line of their work..including using samples. Well worth getting to have as a handbook if you're serious about using them on a regular basis..and also just to have, so you know where you stand and what's expected of you legally.

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Old 09-06-2017, 06:15 PM   #5
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Many thanks, everyone. Confirms what I thought. The question I do have though is whether anyone actually goes to the owner and asks for permission. I know that's the output of most of the legal advice on the site, but I can't see that this would actually be practical.

What I want is for someone to say 'yes, I contacted Warner Bros/ whoever, and yes, they were really helpful'. :-)
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Old 09-06-2017, 06:18 PM   #6
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

I try to use samples from public domain movies if I need them just in case, but I also haven't really been using them at all in quite some time.

But really I don't know how to handle them exactly. I feel like it's common practice to throw caution to the wind and just use the samples you want when you feel like it.

Think of how long people used the amen breakbeat before the original artists were even recognized for it.

Like, speaking of Alien, here's one of my favorite bands using a sample from Alien 3 right in the beginning of this track:

Or for another example: This track from the solo project of one of those guys that was completely written around a sample of Madonna's Die Another Day:

Zero belief that those samples were cleared at all.

Shrug. No idea.

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Old 09-06-2017, 06:21 PM   #7
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by DRR View Post
Many thanks, everyone. Confirms what I thought. The question I do have though is whether anyone actually goes to the owner and asks for permission. I know that's the output of most of the legal advice on the site, but I can't see that this would actually be practical.

What I want is for someone to say 'yes, I contacted Warner Bros/ whoever, and yes, they were really helpful'. :-)
I will seay yes. But not for the reason you hoped for.
Yes because they will never know you used it, you will likely never be worth their time sueing if they do find out, and really, yolo!
Then again I have been called all kinds of things on this forum in older threads for my opinion. So voila!

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Old 09-06-2017, 06:28 PM   #8
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Hip Hop wouldn't exist as a genre if the originals had asked permission.

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Old 09-06-2017, 06:45 PM   #9
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

If my music is ever popular enough for me to care I'll hire a lawyer to sort it.

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Old 09-06-2017, 06:58 PM   #10
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oatbag View Post
Hip Hop wouldn't exist as a genre if the originals had asked permission.
Bingo, or industrial

Quote:
Originally Posted by relic View Post
If my music is ever popular enough for me to care I'll hire a lawyer to sort it.
My thoughts exactly!

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Old 09-06-2017, 07:05 PM   #11
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oatbag View Post
Hip Hop wouldn't exist as a genre if the originals had asked permission.
Vanilla Ice totally didn't sample Under Pressure. Haters gonna hate.

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Old 09-06-2017, 09:58 PM   #12
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Just a thought, in the case that the owner of the copyrights would give a shit, how would "the case" get anywhere? I mean let's say you pitch shift the dialogue down by 2 semitones, do some formant processing, distort, eq, mess with timing/fades etc, then bounce to audio, and pitch shift back up 2 semitones (or let's say 1.90) semitones, does it still count as a cold hard proof?
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Old 09-06-2017, 10:04 PM   #13
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by -Agu- View Post
Just a thought, in the case that the owner of the copyrights would give a shit, how would "the case" get anywhere? I mean let's say you pitch shift the dialogue down by 2 semitones, do some formant processing, distort, eq, mess with timing/fades etc, then bounce to audio, and pitch shift back up 2 semitones (or let's say 1.90) semitones, does it still count as a cold hard proof?
If they have the sample registered with something like [Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
, then yeah..it could matter a lot..and it's kinda hard for the average person out there to know if a sample is covered by such protection or not.

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Old 09-06-2017, 10:05 PM   #14
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by -Agu- View Post
Just a thought, in the case that the owner of the copyrights would give a shit, how would "the case" get anywhere? I mean let's say you pitch shift the dialogue down by 2 semitones, do some formant processing, distort, eq, mess with timing/fades etc, then bounce to audio, and pitch shift back up 2 semitones (or let's say 1.90) semitones, does it still count as a cold hard proof?
I assumed that was obvious, if you don't effect your samples then yawn! Try harder ya know

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Old 09-06-2017, 10:25 PM   #15
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Oatbag View Post
Hip Hop wouldn't exist as a genre if the originals had asked permission.
Um... okay then why did they get clearance for all the samples in the 80s?

OP rule is that you shouldn't use stuff without clearance. Reality is, nobody's gonna listen to your music, let alone buy it, so I wouldn't worry too icy about clearance.

That said, if you did want to obtain clearance for material from a film, it's a pretty simple thing to do.

See every film has a section that goes for about ten minutes called "credits", you should really try reading them sometime.

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Old 09-06-2017, 10:27 PM   #16
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

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Originally Posted by relic View Post
Vanilla Ice totally didn't sample Under Pressure. Haters gonna hate.
Any samples in popular hip hop from the 80s onwards has got clearance

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Old 09-06-2017, 10:29 PM   #17
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaded View Post
Um... okay then why did they get clearance for all the samples in the 80s?

OP rule is that you shouldn't use stuff without clearance. Reality is, nobody's gonna listen to your music, let alone buy it, so I wouldn't worry too icy about clearance.

That said, if you did want to obtain clearance for material from a film, it's a pretty simple thing to do.

See every film has a section that goes for about ten minutes called "credits", you should really try reading them sometime.
Right, so you are going to tell me that ministry got clearances for all the samples used on the mind...?

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Old 09-06-2017, 11:23 PM   #18
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaded View Post
Any samples in popular hip hop from the 80s onwards has got clearance
I am not 100% but I think there was a legit legal battle over this one...id believe it wad a publicity stunt tho

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Old 09-06-2017, 11:24 PM   #19
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

I have off and on used a lot of samples in my art, mostly from movies, some grossly manipulated, some not. Without going into a lot of boring details and backstory, a lawyer friend of mine who knows his business roughly estimated ~$10-20,000 US in licensing fees based on the list I gave him for a single album's worth (approx 10 tracks, maybe 70 minutes). Alternately, a points system can be worked out if the license holder thinks they're better off that way. Apparently a lot of that is negotiable depending on who the rights holders are and terms and whatnot. That was around ten years ago. If you're mobbed up with a record company or publisher than is owned by the same media conglomerate that owns a couple of movie studios it can almost become a non-issue.

It's also worth pointing out that there were some 'big ticket' items on the list - license holders that aren't fond of letting their stuff go without a chunk of change. I doubt that an 'average' album would cost that much, but it seems to be hit or miss.

I'm not saying it'd cost you near that much, just figured I'd relay my small experience with it.

Last edited by Artificer; 09-06-2017 at 11:32 PM..
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Old 10-06-2017, 12:44 AM   #20
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Re: Ripley... signing off. Copyright question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Artificer View Post
I have off and on used a lot of samples in my art, mostly from movies, some grossly manipulated, some not. Without going into a lot of boring details and backstory, a lawyer friend of mine who knows his business roughly estimated ~$10-20,000 US in licensing fees based on the list I gave him for a single album's worth (approx 10 tracks, maybe 70 minutes). Alternately, a points system can be worked out if the license holder thinks they're better off that way. Apparently a lot of that is negotiable depending on who the rights holders are and terms and whatnot. That was around ten years ago. If you're mobbed up with a record company or publisher than is owned by the same media conglomerate that owns a couple of movie studios it can almost become a non-issue.

It's also worth pointing out that there were some 'big ticket' items on the list - license holders that aren't fond of letting their stuff go without a chunk of change. I doubt that an 'average' album would cost that much, but it seems to be hit or miss.

I'm not saying it'd cost you near that much, just figured I'd relay my small experience with it.
Thanks for sharing. Its good to know that this kind of thing isn't totally inaccessible to the every-man...I mean maybe the money aspect, but that it isn't hard to find someone to help you figure out where you'd be should you choose to go the straight and narrow path (so to speak).

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