Copyright and it’s application to the music business

LESSON 2. Copyright

The music industries are built upon the ownership and financial interest in intellectual property (IP). Significantly, a sub-category of IP called copyright.

Songs are separate to recordings. Owners of songs have their own rights, while owners of recordings also have their own rights. Broadly, these rights can be summarised together as:

  • Performing (music) / performance (recordings) / performer rights
  • Reproduction rights
  • Publishing rights
  • Adaptation rights

Copyright exists for categories of works. The owner of those works has particular rights for each category of work they own. Categories of copyright works include:

  1. Literary works
  2. Musical works
  3. Artistic works
  4. Cinematograph works
  5. Sound recordings
  6. Broadcasts
  7. Programme-carrying signals
  8. Published editions
  9. Computer programs.

There is some intellectual property which has similar rights to copyright, but stand alone. In some countries they are referred to as ‘neighbouring rights’ and include sound recordings. In South Africa, the performers’ right is a neighbouring right. A performer must consent to a broadcast, fixation (recording) or reproduction of a fixation of their performance.

Stegmanns Incorporated explains the difference between copyright and a trade mark.

Joel Baloyi speaking on the Copyright Amendment Bill (2017)

Nhlanhla Sibisi speaking on the Copyright Amendment Bill (2019)

ReCreate South Africa tells the story of ‘fair use’ (2018)

Music Piracy in South Africa (2020)

Copyright and Content ID on YouTube (2022)

Get more info on copyright from some authoritative sources:

Publishers Association of South Africa

Lesson 2. Questions

2.1 How many copyright work categories might exist in a broadcast of a music video?
2.2 What are the broad rights of copyright owners?
2.3 How many categories of copyright are there?
2.4 What is a neighbouring right?

Back to lesson 1?

One thought on “Certification: Lesson 2

  1. 2.1. Literary works, Musical works, artistic works cinematography works and sound recordings

    2.2. Performing / performance / performer rights, reproduction rights, publishing rights adaptation rights.

    2.3. Literary works, Musical works, Artistic works, Cinematograph works, Sound recordings, Broadcasts, Programme-carrying signals, Published editions and Computer programs.

    2.4 A neighboring right is similar to a copyright but stands alone but in south Africa it is a performer right, performers must give consent to the broadcaster reproduction of a fixation of their performance


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