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Topic: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

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  1. #1

    Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    I'm getting ready to send out my new demo reel and was thinking about putting a short AUDIO voice-over intro (as the music begins), saying something like,
    "The following is original music and sound design by -(my name).
    Copyright 2005.- Thanks for listening."
    (This voice-over would be done by a professional announcer.)

    This would go over the first 10-15 seconds as the music begins to play.
    I was also thinking it might be a good introduction to my reel.(I know some people will just skip right over it.)

    I am hoping that this might help reduce some potential music rip-offs.
    I was also thinking it might be a good introduction to my reel.

    What do you think?

    Thanks,

    Tom

  2. #2

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    i had a Voice over on my reel but decided to take it off. Though part of the problem was that I did it(and dont really have a radio voice). PErsonally I think it works well if done by a pro.

  3. #3

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    Thanks Vegas- I'm thinking about using a female announcer.

    Tom

  4. #4

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    As a producer who listens to demo reels, don't bother. If the music's good, a voice-over isn't necessary. If the music ain't happening, a voice-over won't save it.
    a $120k business degree will get you a job on Wall Street - a $120k Berklee degree will get you a job on Beale Street...

  5. #5

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    I think his motivation for the VO was to curb potential rip offs of his stuff rather than entice potential clients.

    My take is that it doesn't make any difference except perhaps make you seem more paranoid than usual. I think if you put some © notice printed on your CD label you'll be fine. Are you concerned about people using your actual recordings or people grabbing ideas from them? Either way there's nothing you can do about it!
    >>Kays
    http://www.musicbykays.com
    Music Composition for Feature Films, Television and Interactive Entertainment

  6. #6

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    Thanks guys for your input. Midphase- I more concerned about people
    just taking the music and using it in their film or videos, especially the smaller production companies who have very small budgets.

    Thanks again,

    Tom

  7. #7

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    Unfortunately, every time you send your stuff out you are always taking a risk that some unscrupulous people might do just that. Probably your best line of protection is to do some research on who you send your demos to before sending them and determine if they look like a reputable group.

    The law generally is there to protect the artist, and the burden of proof is up to a company to prove that they had the right to use your stuff. As long as a copyright notice appears on the media label in some form, you're putting a reasonable effort in protecting your intellectual property.

    Unfortunately, there is very little protection if you feel someone listened to your music, and then hired someone else to essentially copy it (at least in style and feel).

    I know some guys who have gotten so paranoid about anyone else potentially ripping off their music that they refuse to have a web site with samples on it. I feel that ultimately the potential for clients to discover your music and hire you far outweighs the risk of someone ripping off your music or using it without authorization. Besides, there could be some benefit too....I would love to hear one of my pieces of music in a movie or a commercial that I did not authorize, I figure that the resulting lawsuit would probably earn me way more than I would have gotten paid for the music if they had legally licensed it!
    >>Kays
    http://www.musicbykays.com
    Music Composition for Feature Films, Television and Interactive Entertainment

  8. #8

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    Perhaps a small 'welcome message' introduction using your own voice would be beneficial. Giving the potential client a peek into your personality via voice. I read often where the producer/director would state that the composers personality was a factor when considering to hire him/her for the job.

    Just a thought.

  9. #9

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    Another possibility is digital watermarking. Could make it easier to prove usage if they try and do a rip or sample job on your demo without paying. I think some of the sample venders use this approach to detect sales of unauthorized copies of their library samples.

    There used to be a company named Cognicity with a product named Audio Key Lite that went for about $99. But I think they got acquired by Digimarc who I don't believe continued the product. But it appears Digimarc might have spun something off to another company named Activated Content which has some sort of offering named Activated Audio Watermarking Suite:

    http://activatedcontent.com/_Activat...e/default.aspx

    ... just not sure how it's priced. Looks like it's aimed at mastering facilities and that there's some sort of web tracking. But they do seem to have a Personal Edition. I see they also license their SDK... maybe some DAW and/or audio editor vendors are incorporated their watermarking functions into their products.

    Howard

  10. #10

    Re: Opinions needed- voice-over/copyright for demo reel?

    Your demo reel really should consist of short pieces of a variety of your work. Producers usually don't have the time or desire to listen to complete pieces even if they are 30 seconds. A good reel with short pieces will get you as much if not more work and you avoid providing dishonest people with enough music to ripoff. problem solved.

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