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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Entertainment & Interests > TV & Media

TV & Media Non-Trek television, movies, books, music, etc.

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Old June 24 2009, 12:49 AM   #1
Rķu rķu, chķu
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Music copyright question

If I have a bunch of CDs, which I have ripped into digital format, and I don't want the CDs anymore, what am I allowed to do with them?

I know that copyright law doesn't allow me to *sell* the CDs. (Not unless I delete the digital files first which I am obviously not going to do.) What about giving them away, or tossing them in the trash? I haven't found any concrete answers even after much Googling on this. Throwing the CDs away seems very wasteful, I would prefer to donate them to charity or something like that.
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Old June 24 2009, 12:55 AM   #2
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Re: Music copyright question

Donate them. That will make your soul happy.
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Old June 24 2009, 01:06 AM   #3
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Re: Music copyright question

^ Yeah, I'm leaning in that direction. Just thought I'd make sure first that it's legit to do that (and keep my ripped files).
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Old June 24 2009, 01:40 AM   #4
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Re: Music copyright question

If you get rid of your physical CDs in ANY way whatsoever, you have to get rid of your digital copies, as far as I can tell.
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Old June 24 2009, 02:51 AM   #5
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Re: Music copyright question

As far as I can tell some companies think you shouldn't even have digital files and a real CD unless you bought both separately.

My advise, fuck the copyrights, they are a joke. Just donate them to good will so if you get sued by some asshole the jury will think you are nice.
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Old June 24 2009, 02:53 AM   #6
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Re: Music copyright question

number6 wrote: View Post
Donate them. That will make your soul happy.
Correct!
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Old June 24 2009, 03:55 AM   #7
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Re: Music copyright question

If you keep the copies, but give away the CDs, you are copying and distributing copyrighted material. You are violating the rights of the copyright holder and, depending on where you live, almost certainly violating at least one law. You will probably get away with it and it might make you feel good; if your ethical system is based on what you can get away with and what makes you feel good, go for it.
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Old June 24 2009, 04:04 AM   #8
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Re: Music copyright question

Delta1 wrote: View Post
If you keep the copies, but give away the CDs, you are copying and distributing copyrighted material. You are violating the rights of the copyright holder and, depending on where you live, almost certainly violating at least one law.
But if I'm not selling the CDs, I'm not making any money, so where's the violation?

And what if I throw them away? Where's the problem there?
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Old June 24 2009, 04:25 AM   #9
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Re: Music copyright question

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
But if I'm not selling the CDs, I'm not making any money, so where's the violation?

And what if I throw them away? Where's the problem there?
One doesn't need to make money to infringe copyright, in the legal sense. Ethically, one could make the same argument; "copyright" means "the right to create infinite copies from one." By keeping digital copies, but donating / selling the CDs, you're creating more copies in circulation than originally intended.
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Old June 24 2009, 04:39 AM   #10
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Re: Music copyright question

You bought the CD. You copied it onto your hard drive, because that's the way you use the information YOU BOUGHT. If you then get rid of the CD-that's your perogative, you own it. I might however suggest an alternative... buy notebook style cases and transfer all the original CD's to them jettisoning the Jewel boxes. This will reduce your storage space, but allow you to keep the original copies as back-ups. Hard drives and computers crash, and can vanish quickly. Depending on how much music we are talking about-it could be VERY expensive to replace if it fails. In addition, the original CDs contain the full digital copies of the music, most computer programs compress the files down, and they are then missing information from the originals. I know that I can sometimes hear compression waves even in mp3's at 360 bit sample rates. Having the originals means if something goes wrong-you can go back to the original file to recopy to your hard drive, instead of making a copy of a copy.

Just my 2 cents-either way the disks are yours-you paid for them. Do what you want with them.
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Old June 24 2009, 05:44 AM   #11
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Re: Music copyright question

JKTim wrote: View Post
Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
But if I'm not selling the CDs, I'm not making any money, so where's the violation?

And what if I throw them away? Where's the problem there?
One doesn't need to make money to infringe copyright, in the legal sense. Ethically, one could make the same argument; "copyright" means "the right to create infinite copies from one." By keeping digital copies, but donating / selling the CDs, you're creating more copies in circulation than originally intended.
Which is why I gave the best advise.

Fuck the "rules".
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Old June 24 2009, 05:53 AM   #12
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Re: Music copyright question

I'm not worried about backups, since I have two iPods in addition to my main computer, so my music is always in at least three places at once even without the discs. I consider that enough of a backup for my needs.

As for newly purchased music - I don't buy CDs anymore, I buy everything through the iTunes Store. I should have done this long ago!

And whether it be music that I ripped from my CDs, or that I buy from the online store, it's all at 256Kbps (AAC format), and that's plenty high of a bitrate. Any higher than that, I would consider a waste of space.
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Old June 24 2009, 06:01 AM   #13
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Re: Music copyright question

To prove you have a right to own the digital copies on your hard drive, you have to keep the original discs. If you give away, throw away, sell or whatever to that original disc then your digital file copy will be deemed illegal. The only real way around that would be if you have a receipt showing that you purchased it, or an empty jewel case, and a police report stating you had been robbed.

If you want to consolidate for space, use an empty disc spindle and stack them up then stick the spindle in the back of a closet.
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Old June 24 2009, 08:37 AM   #14
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Re: Music copyright question

Just a FYI, the RIAA claims that they aren't starting any NEW lawsuits over copyright claims, so it's doubtful that you'll ever have to prove ownership of your digital copies.

I have mp3s of CDs that I still own, but the discs are in a box 400 miles away.
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Old June 24 2009, 01:32 PM   #15
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Re: Music copyright question

Just store them away.

Think of them as a backup in case your HD gets fried.
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