hey gang.  i'm thinking of putting some of my original music up on youtube and/or play it live in the near future.  however, for purposes of covering my ass i want to have definitive proof of my authorship before i go sharing it with other people.  

i know that, back in the pre-digital era, a legally sound way to prove composition was to mail yourself a tape or written copy of your composition and leave it sealed with the dated postmark on the envelope.  could this work with something big like a private youtube account and/or gmail?  i.e., uploading a sketch recording to youtube that only you can see and/or sending it to a gmail account so google's date of upload can be used as independent proof.  does anyone know the legal standing of these options?  has anyone done it?
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i'm not a lawyer and don't know about this, but have you tried googling this concept?

i've thought about this as well.  i mean, if we upload a video to youtube or a file to our google drive account, or as ziggy says, email to our gmail account, then how is that any different than having a notarized timestamp on a piece of paper?

unless google gets hacked or something, it should be a fairly clear definition of ownership.  i'm sure there's precedent for this, though. if you find more information, please post it here.

personally, i feel like if you have uploaded material to a recognized web authority/presence, such as google and youtube, and your material dates before any plagarists, i'm thinking you'll have a good chance of winning that one.  be sure to put a copyright on it, like all rights reserved and any public performance or recording blah blah must be approved by you, the owner.
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what i do know is that in most, if not all cases, the person holding the copyright is responsible for any and all costs of instituting action regarding infringement. which means that that person must cover the cost of all legal activities ( court costs, filing fees, serving notices, and any other such fees) before any action would take place. for me the greater issue is the legality of the mailing of the music you have created or other effort in lieu of an actual copyright. if it is that valuable to you, getting a "real" copyright is definitely the way to go. i would probably feel well rewarded if i walked in some venue and heard a local poor assed musician covering my music. however if it was a big hit with national exposure then i want a piece of the action unless it was someone like justin bieber, then i might just shoot myself.

the searches i performed concluded that the google methods should be valid for dating purposes and proving authorship.  however, they were also framed as a distant third option compared to 1.  paying to get a "real" copyright and/or 2. recording and commercially releasing the music in some capacity.

personally, at this stage i'm just concerned with what happens if i make my music available to the public and find out (though this level of exposure is unlikely, but you never know) that some joker has recorded their own version on youtube or elsewhere and claims they wrote it.

(then again, i know my stuff at the moment isn't breaking any new ground musically, so the only things free from prior cultural osmosis are my lyrics.)
i've had a few people steal tunes that i put up on scoreexchange.com, but most people who want to use my music for a project or something have asked my permission (as far as i know :)
If I'm not back in 24 hours, call the president.

Scot is available for skype jazz piano lessons (and google hangouts, phone call, etc...)
Use the contact link at the top of the page.
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<br>thank you, useful.
<br>thank you, useful
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<br>i don't think it's good to buy a new hard dirve, why not change the laptop? lol.
it's all about the lawyers.

https://www.copyhype.com/2011/06/timbaland-wins-2nd-sampling-lawsuit-in-3-months/ />
"under the berne convention, of which the us is a party member, copyright protection is automatic — it vests as soon as a work is in fixed form. formalities like registration are not allowed under the convention, though many countries do provide the option of registering a work for certain evidentiary and other purposes.

in the us, however, registration is also required for creators of “united states works” before filing a copyright infringement lawsuit. owners of non-us works can sue without registering, though they still must comply with registration requirements if they wish to seek statutory damages in court. (and, while optional for non-us works, registration still confers certain rebuttable presumptions in court.)"

so, if you are going to release your music online and it is jacked or sampled, you do automatically have copyright but you also won't be able to sue successfully until you register for a copyright.

if you don't care to get that serious and just want the credit, most of the internet population i've met seems to believe timestamps. i.e. if your soundcloud/youtube has an entirely post date than the offending party, you will eventually get the right credit. unless the offending party has taken your tune and made it "even better" but that's a whole different discussion ; )
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