Industry Tips & Advice: The 1909 Copyright Act

Russell Rains, a lawyer and Director of the Digital Media Management MBA Program at St. Edward’s University in Austin, TX, explains some key features of the 1909 Copyright Act — a piece of law that led to the creation of concepts like mechanical royalties (which led directly to the rise of the modern record business, broadcast rights, performance royalties, and other revenue streams which are central to the music business of today. He also enumerates the six rights granted by copyright and how each applies to the music business, and how “fair use” rights actually work under the law.

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