The Internet has become the medium of choice for musicians to launch their music and promote it. Though the web provides global exposure to music artists, it also threatens their art- increasing the risk of copyright infringement and piracy. Hence, musicians must protect their music online. Here are some of the best ways to secure your music from being manipulated or stolen by unauthorized people:
Make sure to get a trademark for your stage name or band. A trademark will protect your music and ensure you don’t get into a legal battle with another stage artist. So, the first thing to trademark your band name is to go to the official United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website. On this website, check for registered trademarks and pending applications. Submit your application for a trademark, so your name gets registered.
2. Copyright Your Music
Regardless of your genre of music, register your copyrights to prevent infringement. Though the copyright is an automatic right of the artist who wrote the lyrics and created the song, registering a copyright can protect you in case of a dispute. Remember that copyright infringement is a real threat. Even the most prominent music industry names like Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran have been wrapped in infringement cases.
Registering a copyright also helps take action, especially if you’re a struggling artist and submit your beats or lyrics to a company hoping for a breakthrough instead of listening to your beats and lyrics in another artist’s song. In such as situation, you can easily prove when you originally created your music or song. Please note that there are two types of copyright:
- Copyright underlying song or composition (artwork)
- Copyright of the sound recording
3. Add Digital Watermark
That’s right. If you’re worried or believe someone can unfairly take or steal your music online, then protect it with a digital watermark. Use services like Digimarc and Audiolock to get started.
4. Set up Google Alerts
Another way to protect your music is to set up Google Alerts. Create a new account on Gmail and dedicate it to monitoring your music over the web via Google Alerts. You can use these alerts to keep an eye on everything, such as your music, album, song title, artist name, or band name.
You will instantly get alerts in your email when Google finds your name or music mentioned anywhere online (in an online magazine or a music blog). You will get notified right away with the web page link.
5. Sign up for Royalties
When it comes to protecting your music online, royalties are equally crucial. Sign up with SoundExchange, SESAC, or ASCAP to collect multiple types of royalties from your songs and get the money you deserve.