Few questions about sound recordings

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  • If I recorded a performance of an artist in a public place (like a park or something like that) is it legal for me to upload the audio recording of this on a website for people to download at no charge? Is this breaking any Intellectual Property Copyrights? Can somebody give me a legal description on this.

    Is it possible to have audio files streamed when they are not down loadable on a website?
  • I'm not a lawyer. Here are some thoughts.

    As always, some things depend on the exact circumstances of the situation. There are, of course, copyright exemptions, such as fair use.

    Generally, though, performance and distribution are some of the copyright holder's exclusive rights.

    Distributing on a website would violate a copyright holder's exclusive right (assuming that the work performed is copyrighted). It is possible to stream audio files and have them not easily downloadable, but that doens't really change too much.

    Not charging wouldn't necessarily change the legality of the work. It could affect your fair use evaluation, and it could affect damages awarded in the case of a lawsuit. Don't forget that there are other things besides directly charging that can affect whether your use is considered commercial or not, though. Does the site have ads? Do you sell things? etc.

    Two other relevant laws are the No Electronic Theft Act (which affects the legality of files even when there is no money changing hands) and recent changes to copyright involving bootlegs. Also note that nowadays web radio stations pay licensing fees to stream music.

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