“Why Do Artists Refuse To Register Copyrights:”
Perhaps you’re the guy or girl who has tried to convince a friend who does music to invest in their music career by registering the copyrights to their songs, and they refuse. Or maybe you are the guy or girl your friend has tried to convince, and you refuse. Or maybe you don’t refuse per se, but you just don’t know about the whole copyright thing. Maybe you don’t know why you should, or maybe you just don’t see it being a big deal. I mean, after all, you have put out five albums/mix tapes and nobody has ripped you off yet, so… WHATS THE POINT?!…
And maybe you have a point. Maybe nobody has ripped you off, stole your song, and is now performing it in places you know not of, making money you should be getting a cut from…. MAYBE!…. Or maybe you’re just unaware that it’s already happening….
And while there are some legitimate concerns, like the cost of registering a copyright (now $55 online), and not exactly knowing how to go about filling out the form or understanding music industry lingo…. I hate to tell you but that’s no longer an excuse….
It’s imperative for people aspiring to do music and be any kind of performer to protect themselves via copyright.
The amount of resources out there to help you accomplish these things are almost unlimited. Need money to register? Start a “GoFundMe” account and ask for the money. All you need is $55 US dollars and you’re good to go. Need to know How to fill out the form? You have YouTube to thank for that.
The resources are available to you, you just have to do a little work and simply ask for help. You don’t have to hold yourself back and think that you have to submit to gypping yourself out of a future with your songs, because that’s what you’re doing by not registering your copyrights.
And as I wrap this up, let me explain what I mean…
Imagine that you’re music career is only 10 albums long, you’ve already released 5 albums without registered copyrights, but they’re out there and circulating to — God knows where… and now you’re approaching a big break; you’re unsigned and still fairly unknown, but someone of influence is interested in you and is willing to invest in your career….
You take the deal, and in the time span that you’re with this investor (of whatever sort), you put out 2 more albums but neither catch fire like you hoped… but then you put out a 3rd, and all of a sudden you’re the best thing since sliced bread. The whole world hears you and loves you, but you’ve only got 2 more albums left in your creative, musical womb… So you go forward to release those last two albums, which also become big hits, and that’s it….
You’re career is over but people are still buying your music, and you’re still getting payed from royalties…. BUT!… youre only getting royalties from the last 5 albums you released, because you never registered copyrights for the first 5 you put out, and by the time the investor came, he didn’t want to invest in the first 5 because they had already been out in the public for quite some time.
It’s important to remember that even though you may not want to be on a major record label, there is no investor that wants to put money into something that they can’t see getting the best possible return from, so investing in a music product that the public has already had access to for years wouldn’t benefit them so much, especially with all the piracy going around… I mean, it’s hard enough to get YouTube, Spotify, Apple Music, Beats, Pandora, etc to cooperate with industry laws as they should; so an investor is only looking out for his/her own interest.
Well, I hope this helps. I hope this encourages you. Think about your future. You may not see the value of it now, because maybe from where you’re sitting $55 bucks looks like a million dollars, but you don’t want to be half way through your career, with half of your musical creativity expended before you start doing things right. Trust — It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
*Note: not having registered your copyrights doesn’t mean you can’t get paid from the music you release, but what it means is you can’t get royalties, which are paid via the PRO (Performing Rights Organization) you’re affiliated with and the Publisher. Simply put, you have to be the Owner of the REGISTERED copyright to be entitled to royalties.
So, Go Register Those Copyrights @ http://copyright.gov
-One Mishyon Music