What is a good rule of thumb for recordings & copywrite?

#1
I posed this question to another forumer in a private message, and he recommended I pose it to the whole forum.

As an American, we have certain laws regarding copyright when it comes to music. As an Orthodox Christian, I want to abide by my country's laws and not be stealing anyone's work unlawfully.

In Orthodoxy, there are things such as icons and musical compositions that are unofficially considered in the "free domain", even if they are under a copyright. So that parishes may copy and use them as needed, or so iconographers can copy and replicate them.

For those of us who like to compile as much chanting material as possible, what is a good rule of thumb for downloading and acquiring recordings?

Recordings are a very new thing in terms of human history. So this is a brand new issue coming out, especially for our church.

Where are rights for acquiring recordings and CDs? There are some CDs out there which would be considered under copyright, but are no longer in production.
There are others, such as CDs from Mount Athos, which provide a source of income for the Athonite monasteries, but due to our distance from Mt. Athos, would be cost prohibitive in acquiring. We might spend $25 USD in purchasing a single CD, $50 USD for two, and an additional $15 USD to get it shipped over here.

This is extremely cost prohibitive for us, as is anything going from the USA to Greece.

This might be a huge reason for the prevalence of all the printed & laminated icons here in the USA, as we don't have enough iconographers to provide the demand, and we cannot affordably order iconography from overseas.

Currently, to help my conscious and so I am absolutely sure that I don't fall under the sin of theft, I've only been downloading recordings/videos from individuals, rather than ones that come from produced & monetized CDs and studio recordings. Ones that are obviously not a source of revenue for the individual.

For those who are lawyers, or knowledgeable about these issues, what would you suggest?
 
#2
Christ is Risen!

There is a treasure of recordings here on Psaltologion in the Greek section that are mostly the private recordings of individuals. Your conscience shouldn't be troubled about downloading any of those. Psaltologion has strict standards and has taken down materials (especially books) that have been uploaded illegally.

Of course there are sites that don't follow the same standards of Psaltologion and I agree that this can cause a moral conundrum. My rule of thumb is similar to yours: if it's a studio recording, I go and search first to see if it is for sale somewhere. If it is, I buy it. We need to support the chanters and monks who make the effort to produce these materials for us. If it costs $30 for a CD, so be it. There are so many free materials these days that we can afford to give back. However, if I see an older recording that's "out of print" (especially things ripped from cassette tapes) I don't feel guilty in downloading it.

I can't offer any specific legal advice, but I feel this is fair.

Panagiotis
 
#3
Christ is Risen!

There is a treasure of recordings here on Psaltologion in the Greek section that are mostly the private recordings of individuals. Your conscience shouldn't be troubled about downloading any of those. Psaltologion has strict standards and has taken down materials (especially books) that have been uploaded illegally.

Of course there are sites that don't follow the same standards of Psaltologion and I agree that this can cause a moral conundrum. My rule of thumb is similar to yours: if it's a studio recording, I go and search first to see if it is for sale somewhere. If it is, I buy it. We need to support the chanters and monks who make the effort to produce these materials for us. If it costs $30 for a CD, so be it. There are so many free materials these days that we can afford to give back. However, if I see an older recording that's "out of print" (especially things ripped from cassette tapes) I don't feel guilty in downloading it.

I can't offer any specific legal advice, but I feel this is fair.

Panagiotis
Indeed He is Risen!

Thank you so much for your feedback! I've been mainly downloading the recordings on this website because I've trusted they are obtained or provided fairly and freely.

I've been very thankful for everything on here. Even if it is in Greek, I take the time to change the title into the appropriate English equivalent and try to use it all to help me.

The difficulty has been finding good English recordings. Most Antiochian sources are currently using Kazan. I'm getting a pretty good mastery of the Kazan version of Byzantine tones. Most Greek sources I've found use Dedes. Both are lacking in terms of being truly "Byzantine" and also having good translations.

I've really struggled to find good recordings of choirs or chanters performing the work of Papa E from St. Anthony's Monastery.

Thank you once again!
 

saltypsalti

Παλαιό Μέλος
#4
Christ is Risen!

There is a treasure of recordings here on Psaltologion in the Greek section that are mostly the private recordings of individuals. Your conscience shouldn't be troubled about downloading any of those. Psaltologion has strict standards and has taken down materials (especially books) that have been uploaded illegally.

Of course there are sites that don't follow the same standards of Psaltologion and I agree that this can cause a moral conundrum. My rule of thumb is similar to yours: if it's a studio recording, I go and search first to see if it is for sale somewhere. If it is, I buy it. We need to support the chanters and monks who make the effort to produce these materials for us. If it costs $30 for a CD, so be it. There are so many free materials these days that we can afford to give back. However, if I see an older recording that's "out of print" (especially things ripped from cassette tapes) I don't feel guilty in downloading it.

I can't offer any specific legal advice, but I feel this is fair.

Panagiotis
Would you be kind enough to provide quick links to these audio files?

JPP