Sunday, April 24, 2016


(c) 2016 P.Lynne Designs
I often speak about copyrights and ownership on this blog, especially when it comes to images you decide to download and use on your blog or website to make the site prettier, stately, and for drawing traffic.  The correct way of getting to use a particular image on your blog or website is to simply write the person who took the picture in the first place, introduce yourself, and say something like, “Hi, my name is Patricia Logan, and I am a blogger of MAL blog.  I noticed that you have taken a picture of x, I would love to use it in my soon to be released blog post about blogging, which I think your image would go perfectly with it.”  next explain that you always give credit to the person who takes the picture.   If the person says, “sure, thank you for asking”.  No problem.  If the person says, “I charge a small fee for the use of my images.”  Simply ask what that fee is, and determine at that time how valuable is the picture is worth to you. If the person says no, or the price is too high, kindly thank the person, and move on.  It is that simple, right? Not so fast.
A lot of times, people do not think of the time and effort for that photographer takes to find the perfect moment, mood, and angle for that photo session.  I really had to think about it in the past few months, because, I have a few friends who are photographers, and I recently in the past year or so have been dabbling in the art of photography myself.  I do not have all the filters.  In fact, it is just me, my phone or my Ipad, and the subject.  I also have Photoshop and Lightroom on my desktop.  I had a small camera in the past that I absolutely loved, which was an HP point and shot camera.  It is broken from years of use. The last place I took photos was at Disneyland, around San Diego/Los Angeles/San Bernardino/Hollywood, CA, as well as Kansas, Nebraska, Illinois, and Indiana.  That was 2007. After that, it was cameras inside of smartphones and tablets.  I really miss the feel of a real camera, and cameras these days’ upload to YouTube just like smartphones and tablets do. If I can find one that is within my budget of $100-$250 but works like it is in the $500-$850 range, I will be happy. 
Anyway, back to copyrights and ownership….
The same thing about copyright and ownership can be said about any posts written, interviews given, videos, or any music download onto Itunes or Spotify music players.  I recently had a reminder of downloaded music with Spotify.  I am a huge Michael Jackson and Prince Fan, I listen to their music all the time, and today, just like I did with Michael and Whitney Houston when they died, I wanted to drown myself into Prince’s music.  I only found a few pieces of his music on Spotify, and on Pandora. 
I remembered reading that he was heavily against sites like these, because if a person listens to the music without paying to download it (and you don’t if you have Spotify free, I have the premium app), the artist does not get paid the royalties that they deserve.  I think according to Prince, an artist gets maybe $.02 of that money, and he thought artists needed to be paid more money.  This is the reason why more musicians do not allow sites like Spotify to have their music.
Anyway, later on, I was thinking what are his lawyers going to do with any unpublished music, which is now put on the backburner permanently, because of Prince’s death today.  I really did not think the executors and overseers handled Michael Jackson’s estate very well, due to all of the unpublished music Michael had, and they did not allow his family to have a say in it at all.  if that was the case, the family would have decided when that last album would have been released, if at all. To me, it was an unfinished album, and Michael was just a pawn for the producers to get what they wanted.  I do not think any of the album money went towards his mother nor his children.
I wanted to see once again how unfinished that album felt, so I went to the Spotify app on my desktop to pull it up, and they got rid of the music.   I am not protesting, but I think Michael’s family or executors must have threatened to take them to court on the album.  
So the moral of the story is, you do not own a single copy of the music on Spotify, Pandora, or Itunes, none of it.  It is not yours, and it never was yours to begin with, you are just borrowing a copy of that song, and Spotify (or whatever site you are listening to music on) has the right to pull that piece of music whenever the artist or executors of their estate pull out the “Sue” card for illegally playing their music.  
Will I stop using Spotify, Itunes, or Pandora?  No, but I am now more aware that I do not own a copy of the remaining music I listen to.  I am merely borrowing it, and I do not have the right to share it with someone else. 

If you want any type of media, such as music or images, and are very creative, take your own photos (unless noted, most of my photos now have my P. Lynne Designs copyright on it), design it, compose it, or pay someone to do it for you.  If you do the latter, do not forget to give them credit for it.  For $5, you can hire someone from Fiverr to do it for you.   

P.S.... RIP Prince, we will miss you, and thank you for offering your talent to the world

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