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The Business of Music$
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Michael Talbot

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780853235286

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846312717

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Copyright as a Component of the Music Industry

Copyright as a Component of the Music Industry

(p.171) 6 Copyright as a Component of the Music Industry
The Business of Music

Dave Laing

Liverpool University Press

This chapter examines the role of intellectual property rights in relation to the music business and argues that enforcement of the law would benefit struggling artists as well as large corporations. It considers the ‘ensemble or complex of practices and institutions’ that simultaneously enables and regulates the production, distribution and consumption of music. After providing an overview of the ideological and rhetorical debate about the efficacy and ethics of music copyright, the chapter looks at the copyright market and its mechanisms, which include the institution of the authors' collection society, how prices are set, and the so-called ‘compulsory licence’. It also presents four case studies in the articulation of copyright in the music industry: the establishment of the performing right for composers in the 1850s; the granting of the status of ‘copyright owner’ to record companies in the early twentieth century; the role of patent owners, since the 1970s, in the marketing of five generations of audio and audio-visual home entertainment systems; and the uncertain status of music copyright owners in the cyberspace market.

Keywords:   music industry, business, intellectual property rights, copyright, prices, compulsory licence, record companies, composers, home entertainment systems, cyberspace

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