Stet Lab has moved to stetlab.wordpress.com [more info…]

Audio recordings: proposed terms and conditions

The audio recordings on this site have been made available courtesy of the performers. The current handshake agreement, however, is a little haphazard, and (potentially) prone to misunderstandings. I am therefore proposing to move these recordings onto the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License. I recommend that you have a read of the full license text, but, in summary, this license allows you to

copy, distribute and transmit the work

provided you meet the following conditions:

Attribution. You must attribute the work in the manner specified by the author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work).

Noncommercial. You may not use this work for commercial purposes.

No Derivative Works. You may not alter, transform, or build upon this work.

This would allow noncommercial distribution (and only without modification) provided the recording remains attributed “in the manner specified by the author or licensor”. I propose that any given recording be attributed, at a minimum, to the all performers on that recording. (For example, ‘which side are you on anyway?’ would have to be attributed to Andrea Bonino, Eoin Callery, Murray Campbell, Susan Geaney, Marian Murray, Neil O’Loghlen, Han-earl Park, Veronica Tadman and Kevin Terry.)

In practice, this should not create any significant change from the current situation, with the following exception: it will be difficult to subsequently alter the license, or withdraw a recording licensed in this manner.

Regarding the existing recordings, this will be an opt-in process. In other words, only in cases where I can gain agreement from all participating performers will the recording be moved onto the Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works License.

This will be a big job, and I’d like some discussion of this, so comments are very, very welcome. (You may, of course, contact me with your comments, but I would prefer public discussion, and to avoid anonymous comments, if possible, especially if you are a performer represented in the Stet Lab recordings.)

7 Comments

  1. Posted November 23, 2008 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    A couple of people have got in touch asking for clarification of the current situation. The short answer is, there is no formal agreement. What I understand is that Stet Lab has permission to make available recordings of the performances provided we don’t sell them.

    What brought this to a head? At least one performer does not recall being asked for permission to have the recordings available. Since I do not want to be making available material that I should not be, I want to formalize this process in the future, and my preference is for a CC license (and I deliberately chose the most conservative one).

    Okay, I’m assuming the following

    A. the performers own the recordings, but
    B. the performers are unlikely to ever make money from these recordings,
    C. no one has any way of effectively policing distribution, and
    D. everyone wants widest possible exposure.

    Note point B: under either conventional copyright laws or the proposed CC system, it is, in theory, possible to sell or make money from these recordings. In the case of the Stet Lab recordings, however, this is complicated since you would have to gain permission from every relevant performers which, in many cases, would be difficult.

    For those who asked about what the issues are, here’s the question that needs to be answered:

    Q: under what conditions are the recording made available on this site?

    my proposed answer is

    A: the recordings are freely distributed for noncommercial use provided no alterations are made, and all the performers are credited.

    Again, it is still possible to alter or make money from these recordings, but it would, at best, be difficult to gain permission to do so.

  2. Alex Fiennes
    Posted November 24, 2008 at 10:16 am | Permalink

    The only comment that I have is that if we assume that noone is going to make any money out of these recordings then the primary purpose of putting the recordings live is to let people listen to them in a responsible manner. The licence (if required) should facilitate this process primarily and protect the artists from abuse as a secondary command.

    While the attribution clause is good and honourable I can almost guarantee that it will not be honoured if it involves more work than just passing an mp3 onto someone else. I’ve picked a random mp3 from the download section (11-10-08_00.m,p3), and the closest it gets to attribution is:-

    Artist: Stet Lab
    Album: Stet Lab (Cork, 11-10-08)

    Now just giving someone a copy of this mp3 file doesn’t conform to the attribution clause in the license, and therefore is illegal and should be pursued by the license holder’s representation, which is probably Han.

    However, if one encoded all of the attributees into the meta-data in the mp3 then would merely passing on a non-altered mp3 satisfy the terms of the licence? It might need encoding of a link to the license as well into the meta-data but this is relatively easy. If it does then the majority of people who are distributing and / or listening to the recordings will be satisfying the terms of the license and the license will only kick in when someone is actually doing Something Evil which is what the license is actually for.

  3. Posted November 24, 2008 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    …If one encoded all of the attributees into the meta-data in the mp3 then would merely passing on a non-altered mp3 satisfy the terms of the licence?

    I agree. If we move onto this license, I will need to re-tag all the mp3s with the performers’ names and an appropriate link to the license.

    This should be a fairly trivial task, but I really need to know if people have any objections to such a move.

    Thanks for the comment, Alex. This clarifies many issues in my mind.

  4. Kevin Terry
    Posted November 24, 2008 at 10:51 pm | Permalink

    Though I’d prefer the CC Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License, the Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 is fine with me.

  5. Tony O Connor
    Posted November 29, 2008 at 1:01 am | Permalink

    Sounds fine to me.

  6. Andrea Bonino
    Posted December 3, 2008 at 12:10 am | Permalink

    I agree with the license chosen, and share the concerns that have been expressed about the tagging. Normally i prefer to use the ShareAlike License for my own work, but I agree that the Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 is more likely to be accepted by all performers involved

  7. Posted December 12, 2008 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    The December 9th Stet Lab recordings are online. These are the first set of recordings to be released under the CC by-nc-nd license. [More info…]

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