So, I got a final notice from Tumblr about copyright violations using audio files, presumably the cover songs I usually post daily. Apparently Topher Chris got one too, and I’m assuming lots of people did. A couple of quick notes on the notice:
- First, the notice points you to a Stanford University webpage for links to helpful information about copyright laws and digital / social media. Clicking on the useful links gives you the results you see above. None of the four web pages is active. This may be a cryptic way of just saying ‘you’re out of luck’, but it’s probably just a case of no one caring about maintaining links to this kind of information.
- Second, I guess this means I’ll need to delete all my audio posts and rely exclusively on YouTube video posts in the future. What’s weird about that is, I prefer my audio posts because I buy every one of those songs. I’m not debating whether that gives me the right to post them on Tumblr. I do it here because people can’t download the songs or easily steal them, and you’re only allowed one audio post per day. So it seems like a fair middle ground. But I buy the songs so the artists make the money off that purchase, and I post them in hopes that someone or many people will like the song and elect to buy it themselves, or see the band in concert, buy a t-shirt, whatever. But I avoid posting YT videos because in most of those cases, no one has purchased the song and I feel like it’s worse for the artist. But, what do I know? Maybe the labels have a deal with YT and they get paid more for playbacks on youtube than they do from me buying the song outright. And maybe they’re actually happier if I post YT videos instead. So, that’s what I’ll do, and let any violation notices go to the person posting the video on YT instead of to me.
- And lastly, this latest notice — I think this is the third one I’ve received but it could be four — doesn’t even tell me what post or song was a violation, so I can’t argue back against it, even if I was inclined to do that. Which I’m not.
I actually respect the rights of the artists and their various clearance and rights teams. The people behind the takedown notices don’t care at all, but I feel like what you get on Tumblr is exposure to new bands that might make you want to buy their music. And if you don’t like it enough to do that, well, they didn’t lose a sale they were never going to have in the first place.
Anyway, I’m not sure deleting the posts will make any difference. There are probably additional takedown notices already in the pipeline and I’m not sure it’ll matter if the post in question no longer exists. But I’ll try it.
Still, you never know, one day my blog may disappear as a result of some music rights institute in Europe filing a claim.