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A list of some of the terms you'll come across when using Royalty Free Music

Production Music - music that has been written and recorded specifically to be used in media productions. The media producer will pay a fee to the Production Music owner (publisher) for permission to use an instance of music in their media production (TV programme, Film etc). The music on this site is an example of production music.

Stock Music - another name sometimes used for Production Music

Library Music - see Production Music

Music Library - publishers that own collections "catalogues" of production music, refer to their catalogue as a music library.

Royalty Free Music - a type of Production Music, with simpler and easier licensing. Music is licensed by a single one-time payment to cover all uses with no further payments or royalties due. This website contains lots of royalty free music

Buyout Music - another term used for Royalty Free Music, because of the nature of a royalty license, this is often referred to as a "buyout", meaning all permission for all rights have been paid for.

Copyright Free Music - used mistakenly to describe Royalty Free Music. All music contains various elements of Copyright (see Copyright).

Copyright - defined in the US Constitution as ' a limited duration monopoly" ...to promote the progress of science and useful arts by giving their creators exclusive rights to their works for a period of time. Copyright includes the following five rights

1 - Reproduce the work
2 - Distribute copies of the work
3 - Perform the work 'publicly'
4 - Make a derivative work
5 - to display the work publicly

Berne Convention - International agreement that protects Copyright worldwide. For example, a work created inthe US is also protected in the UK, and all 162 countries that are parties to the agreement.

Composer - someone who writes an original musical work.

Publisher - someone who represents the copyright(s) in a musical work on behalf of the copyright owner.

Performance Rights - the right to allow a piece of music or a composition to be performed in public.

Mechanical Rights - the right to allow a musical recording or composition to be reproduced mechanically. If you make, for example, a DVD containing music and wish to sell 5000 copies, you need to pay the rights holders for permission to do this.

Synchronisation Rights - the right to include a piece of music or recording in synchronisation with visuals. Anyone making a TV programme or film for example would need to get permission from the Rights Holder for Synchronisation.

Performance Rights Organisation (PRO) - these monitor what music is played and performed in public. They generally charge an annual license fee (sometimes referred to as a blanket license) to broadcasters. They then redistribute these fees to their members, who are music composers and publishers.

Cue Sheet - these contain details of music contained in a TV programme or broadcast, they are completed by the broadcaster and given to the PRO to enable them to know what music has been performed. The PRO uses this information to pay it's members (composers and publishers) their share of any fees as a royalty. See Performance Rights Organisation

Broadcaster - TV company, Radio company are the obvious ones, but anyone who plays music to toher members of the public is technically a broadcaster. This can include websites, corporate DVD's played to staff, telephone-on-hold systems.

Blanket License - a license given by a copyright owner to a music user that covers ('blankets') all of the compositions they represent. For example, a TV broadcaster will pay a blanket license to their local PRO, in exchange for which they can broadcast all music represented by that PRO and it's affiliates worldwide. This is useful, it saves the broadcaster having to negotiate with every publisher for every single piece of music used - this would be impossible.

Public Performance - when a piece of music is played publically. This could include, for example, a TV programme with music in, a radio show, film, trade show, over a cable system (eg phones). Exact definitiond vary worldwide - see Performance Rights Organisations

DVD - Digital Versatile Disc, an optical disc storage media format, often used for storing films/movies with high visual and sound quality.

CD - Compact Disc, an optocal disc used to store digital data, from the mid 1980's it became the standard physical medium for commercial audio recordings.

Video - the technology of electronically capturing and reconstructing a sequence of still images which represent scenes in motion. Video technology was first developed for television systems, later being developed into other formats to allow for consumer video recording. Video can also be viewed over the Internet.

Music Styles - we have another page with a list of some of the music styles you'll find in our music library



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