Legal Question in Technology Law in Pennsylvania

Copyright infringement?

I made some cover songs and put them on myspace. I'm not selling them, or do anything with them. I'm just letting people listen to them. Is this illegal?

I did make the music with my own guitars, drums, and other instruments. It still follows the same notes as the original. The voice is also the bands. The lyrics are from the original band though.

Asked on 5/27/07, 12:35 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Gerry Elman Elman Technology Law, P.C.

Re: Copyright infringement?

If the lyrics and/or music are protected by copyright and the performers don't have permission, yes, it sounds like a copyright infringement.

The U.S. copyright law provides in section 106:

Subject to sections 107 through 122, the owner of copyright ... has the exclusive rights to do and to authorize any of the following:

(1) to reproduce the copyrighted work in copies or phonorecords;

(2) to prepare derivative works based upon the copyrighted work;

(3) to distribute copies or phonorecords of the copyrighted work to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership, or by rental, lease, or lending;

(4) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and motion pictures and other audiovisual works, to perform the copyrighted work publicly;

(5) in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, and choreographic works, pantomimes, and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural works, including the individual images of a motion picture or other audiovisual work, to display the copyrighted work publicly; and

(6) in the case of sound recordings, to perform the copyrighted work publicly by means of a digital audio transmission.

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Answered on 5/27/07, 3:32 pm

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