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Use of music at political conventions


cedar

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I've been trying to tell my wife that. The principal reason a campaign pulls a song on request is simply because they don't want the trouble. They could get away with it in many cases, but if the Monarchy Party feels that the band The Anarchists would cause too much bad publicity if they used their song, the Monarchists would back off.

 

Like the article says, it seems that in this case IRL, the party/candidate doesn't care.

 

*In college at UMCP, we had a Monarchy Party that ran and won Student Government. It was pretty funny.

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There is something missing there, though. If a song is used in a way that implies endorsement by an artist, that artist has a much stronger claim against the use. (Or rather, a claim at all, since as the article notes, legally obtained licensing is otherwise sufficient for a politician to use a song).

 

So if a politician wants to use a song in a public arena as part of a get-you-pumped mix tape...good luck getting that pulled, artist. And also, sheesh, get a life, royalties are royalties and at least you're being spun.

 

BUT...if a politician wants to use a song as a de facto campaign theme song, implying some complicity by the part of the artist in the association with the politician, the artist has some grounds for action. Implied endorsement is a misuse of the artist's public image, and that (alone) is actionable. Not foolproof, but legally addressible.

 

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Not sure anything is missing. The article notes:

 

Ritter notes that "artists retain certain rights to the work outside of the blanket license," resulting in some cases where an artist can block the use of a song in certain circumstances, like in an ad. If the campaign had played a song to which it didn't have a license at an event if the audio technician strayed from that USB drive the band could object and sue. With a license, though, the artist doesn't have many options. ASCAP, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, has a guide for campaigns which notes that other legal constraints may apply, such as the precept of "false endorsement" -- implying that the artist supports the person's candidacy. To avoid this, they wisely recommend contacting the artist.
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It's always pretty embarrassing when an artist who hasn't been contacted about political use takes the time out of their life to emphatically state they do not support the use of their material by candidate x.

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Yeah, would think that they would check first to see if the artist is a supporter. Reminds me of when Reagan used "Born in the USA" thinking that it was a "positive American song". Bruce advised him to listen to the lyrics.

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Not sure anything is missing. The article notes:

 

Ritter notes that "artists retain certain rights to the work outside of the blanket license," resulting in some cases where an artist can block the use of a song in certain circumstances, like in an ad. If the campaign had played a song to which it didn't have a license at an event if the audio technician strayed from that USB drive the band could object and sue. With a license, though, the artist doesn't have many options. ASCAP, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, has a guide for campaigns which notes that other legal constraints may apply, such as the precept of "false endorsement" -- implying that the artist supports the person's candidacy. To avoid this, they wisely recommend contacting the artist.

 

Oh, I see. You're one of those people who thinks that just because something is in the original article in exactly the form I said it wasn't, that means it's "not missing."

Now out! "Mind the Gap," a 24-song album of new material.
www.joshweinstein.com

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I think there may be another variable, in that the rights to use the song at a live event might not extend to broadcast. The political conventions are televised and designed specifically to play to a much larger audience than those who physically attend the event... it is, to some extent, a TV event that has a live audience. I would be surprised if there was not more required in permission and/or fees.

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I have always found it interesting that Chrissy Hyde allows Rush Limbaugh to use her song My City Was Gone (Ohio) as his theme music. My understanding is that it generates fairly enormous revenue for her, which she then donates to PETA.
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Informative Washington Post article. I was wondering how political candidates can use music at their events without the artist's permission, and that explains it all.

 

It will be interesting to see if this Presidential candidate uses Queen again for his grand entrance tomorrow night. My guess is no, unless he really wants to push it :laugh:

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