"By" is not descriptive enough to avoid lawsuits

• Apr 22, 2015 - 20:40

Musescore lawyers, sit up and take notice:
I'm new to Musescore, but, not new to the world of copyright. And Musescore as an organization has a great deal of responsibility regarding the posting of copyrighted material.* Musescore should make sure that it shows it has made every effort to provide users with the opportunity and tools to inform everyone of the intellectual ownership of the work they post.
Many users are violating copyrights by not crediting properly. I've seen many scores with no credit at all.
Most scores have a simple " by Fred Jones" What was by Fred? A transcription? an Arrangement? Who actually wrote the darn thing?
I think a proper score template should have places for:
Composed by: Approx. Date composed: (This give you an Idea whether or not it is likely in Public Domain)
Transcribed by: ( n/a is always a possible fill-in)
Arranged by:
Lyrics by: ( n/a if applicable )

Most people just put "by:" which doesn't indicate Composition, Transcription. Lyrics, or what?
At least it would make people think about the distinctions.
This could either be a part of the standard Musescore template, or part of a short, signed user agreement, as well as a handbook. I don't think it's enough to just have a "report copyright violations" link. Especially when there is little or no information on which to base that decision.

* In other words, the injured party could come after Musescore if they can't squeeze money out of the user who violated the copyright.


At the same time, there is a fair amount of work that would legitimately come under "fair use" (e.g. my arrangements that were worked out by me, by ear, and with no help, for an ensemble which is not directly related to the original instrumentation.

I feel for this guy's complaint: https://musescore.com/user/27378/scores/227681

I really wish MuseScore would add a lot more additional description fields on the website (and make some of them mandatory) to be able to sort through the music and give attribution effectively.

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