If I pay someone on the internet to transcribe a piano solo played on you tube.com, can I be held liable ? I am not a member of any music group. The transcription will be used by me for my piano playing education and enjoyment.
1 Answer from Attorneys
By paying someone else to transcribe a copyrighted work, you'd be inducing someone else to commit a crime, which could take this activity into the realm of criminal copyright infringement; that's serious time in federal prison (I believe we're talking about 5 years) on top of criminal penalties (in the $250K-$500K range), and civil penalties from the lawsuit from the composer and/or arranger and/or performer would almost certainly follow that.
It's much easier, cheaper, quicker and more legal to just purchase the sheet music for the arrangement from a legitimate outlet. Try Van Curler's in the Proctor's Arcade on State St. in Schenectady; if they don't have it, they'll order it for you.
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