Licensing Music Made Hard

David Walker has an article up at Photo District News about the troubles photographers have – and are getting into – in using copyrighted music in wedding videos.

It’s hard, from all reports, to get a license for use in these videos so many photographers just do without. That’s coming back to bite some of them.

I am constantly stunned at how many photojournalists, at major conferences, decide to use their 60 minute time slot to run a slideshow set to music of their work. It shows a fairly significant misunderstanding of their audience (most have seen the work and want to know how it came to be) and a massive misunderstanding of copyright law. There’s no way putting images to copyrighted music and showing it in a room of 100 is a “private performance.” It’s a public performance and you need a license.

How can we chase after others for violations when so many of our own are violators?

Mark E. Johnson

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