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Online course

Music Copyright: Understanding UK Copyright Law When Working with Music

Understand UK music copyright law and how it applies to you as a creator, producer, marketer, distributor or licensee of music.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Music Copyright: Understanding UK Copyright Law When Working with Music

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Explore UK music copyright law and how it can benefit musicians

This online course introduces you to the key aspects of UK music copyright law.

It answers questions such as: what is protected by copyright and what is not? In what circumstances can you reuse copyrighted material without permission or payment? How do collecting societies work? And how can you make money as a musician through licensing deals, self publishing or giving your music away?

Real-life musicians share their experiences throughout the course, offering advice on dealing with copyright, being copied by other artists and avoiding accidentally falling into a copy trap.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 7 secondsSUBJECT 1: Hello, welcome to the course on music copyright. My name is Sukhpreet Singh, and I work at the CREATe Copyright Centre based at the University of Glasgow. I'm responsible for online masters programmes such as the PG certificate in IP innovation and the creative economy. I'm also a researcher of informal IP rights and media management.

Skip to 0 minutes and 31 secondsKRIS ERICKSON: My name is Kris Erickson, and I'm a lecturer in intellectual property and innovation also at the University of Glasgow. My research with online creative communities looks at how they respond to corporate law and what sorts of incentives are most important to them.

Skip to 0 minutes and 45 secondsSUKHPREET SINGH: At CREATe, we investigate the future of creative production through the lens of copyright law, and the impact this has on creative digital invasion. The music business is changing fast due to radical pressures of technology and user behaviour. Some observe that it is fast amalgamating into the global data industry. In this scenario, what is the role of copyright in the creation, availability and consumption of music?

Skip to 1 minute and 17 secondsKRIS ERICKSON: In the first week, you'll explore what copyright is, what it can protect and for how long, and what it doesn't protect. You'll hear from musicians talking about real copyright issues, such as how to borrow from someone else's music when producing your own. You will learn about how to seek permission to reuse music and when, under certain conditions, you can use copyright works without permission; something known as copyright exceptions. In the second week, you'll learn about how you can exploit your rights in the music you create. Artists can earn money through different licencing options and innovative business models. You'll learn how copyright differentiates between different contributions in a work.

Skip to 1 minute and 57 seconds You'll also explore ways in which you can reach a wider audience and make money from your creations, either through traditional routes such as the recording and publishing deals, or new or internet enabled models.

Skip to 2 minutes and 8 secondsSUKHPREET SINGH: During this course, you will interact with us as well as Bartolomeo Meletti, the creative director of copyrightuser.org, who would be happy to give you a helping hand with some of the tricky corners you might encounter. Upon completion of this course, you'll have a better understanding of how UK copyright law shapes music production and its global distribution. You'll find out more about free avenues to seek further information, such as snappy, easy to understand copyright commentary, and animations on copyrightuser.org, or access cutting edge research-based ideas and debates in music copyright through create.ac.uk.

Skip to 2 minutes and 56 seconds You may also be interested in more formal learning opportunities, such as the online MSC in intellectual property innovation, and the creative economy offered by the University of Glasgow. I hope you enjoy the ride.

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Demonstrate an understanding of UK copyright law, including basics of protected musical works, duration, and, copyright exceptions.
  • Explore how the market works using licensing deals and royalties through collecting societies.
  • Engage with newer concepts such as internet based self-publishing, and, using creative commons licenses.

Who is the course for?

The course is primarily aimed at musicians and current or aspiring music industry professionals. It covers the key aspects of copyright law that creators, producers, marketers and distributors of music need to know about.

It is also useful to anyone working in other creative industries that license music, such as advertising, film, television and digital media.

What software or tools do you need?

To take part in this course, all you need is a decent computer and access to the internet (preferably broadband).

Who will you learn with?

Bartolomeo Meletti

I am the Lead Producer of CopyrightUser.org for CREATe (University of Glasgow). Currently I am being seconded to the British Film Institute as Copyright Education Creative Director.

Kristofer Erickson

Lecturer in Intellectual Property & Innovation at the University of Glasgow, with research interest in digital media, peer-production and open knowledge.

Sukhpreet Singh

I am a Senior Lecturer at University of Glasgow based CREATe Centre running Masters courses in IP & Innovation. I research informal IP and media management. I speak English, Punjabi, Hindi & Assamese.

Who developed the course?

Founded in 1451, the University of Glasgow is the fourth oldest university in the English-speaking world. It is a member of the prestigious Russell Group of leading UK research universities.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Get extra benefits, upgrade this course. For $54 you’ll get:

Unlimited access

Upgrading will mean you get unlimited access to the course.

  • Take the course at your own pace
  • Refer to the material at any point in future

If you’re taking a course for free you have access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join. If you upgrade the course you have access for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn.

A Certificate of Achievement

Upgrading means you’ll receive a Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course.

  • Prove your success when applying for jobs or courses
  • Celebrate your hard work
  • Display on your Linkedin or CV

To receive a Certificate of Achievement you need to mark 90% of the steps on the course as complete.