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Music: Copyright Law Book

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Lala's Selling Used Discs

You get this disc you insert it into your computer and you've got the whole album as files. And you sell said disc to ANOTHER individual, recouping most of your 1.50 investment. [article]


CNN: Court acquits site owner Aug 15, 2007 12:57 PM At the beginning of the year global credit card companies stopped allowing customers to pay for music downloads and by July the Web site had quietly closed down. Although has disappeared, another Russia-based discount music Web site has since emerged --, also owned by MediaServices.
Since November 2003 the web music merchant, operated by the Russian company Media Services, has been openly selling some of the most popular western music at a fraction of the cost of widely touted American sites.
Allofmp3 has signed agreements for this with Russian Organization for Multimedia & Digital Systems
Bottom Line it's Legal for US Citizens. Moscow-based Media-services — which owns the Web site, asserted that it is running a legitimate business and denied claims by record companies that it violates copyright law. Allofmymp3 sells the tracks by the megabyte ($.02 per mb) about .12 per song. The site typically charges under a dollar for an entire album and just cents per track. Media-services maintains that it pays taxes in Russia and that 15 percent of every sale is sent as royalties to the Russian licensing body it claims is responsible for compensating copyright owners.


  • According to British market research firm XTN Data,, is the second most popular site in the United Kingdom for music downloads iTunes came in first with 44% while came in a distant second with only 14%.
  • Riaa sues
    Recording companies have filed suit in U.S. Federal District Court in Manhattan against a Russan online music service. The lawsuit seeks an injunction against to prevent it from selling copyrighted music without permission and to force it to surrender its domain names. The Russian site sells albums for a fraction of the cost of legal music sites and offers music from artists who have not authorized online sales of their music. The AllofMP3 site claims that it complies with Russian copyright law. Russia agreed to rein in Russian Web sites that illegally sell copyrighted materials as a condition of joining the World Trade Organization, but without evident progress to date. The U.S. lawsuit targets Mediaservices, the AllofMP3 site's Moscow-based operator, which also runs a music service called allTunes that uses an interface similar to that of iTunes.

"According to their license allofmp3, has the right to use musical compositions by providing downloads. Under the license agreement Allofmp3 pays out fees to ROMS for downloaded materials that are subject to the Russian Federation Copyright And Related Rights Law.
ROMS is a member of CISAC - the International confederation of authors and composers societies. ROMS manages intellectual rights in the Russian Federation. All third party distributors licensed by ROMS are required to pay a portion of the revenue to the ROMS. ROMS in turn, is obligated to pay most of that money (aside from small portion it needs for operating expenses) to artists. Both Russian and foreign.
This license is only supposed to allow content to be sold to Russians. The site doesn't appear to do non-Russian advertising and promotion, though they do have an English version of the site available (they say its to address problems with Russian language-encoding standards which existed they launched but that many Russian nationals living outside of the country prefer to use the English version for browsing). They claim its a site created for Russians but those who come to their site
from abroad are welcome and are provided with full service. Sales to non-Russians are said to be 'insignificant' but I rather think its because their management has wisely chosen a Russian processor that does not offer AllofMP3 direct access the information from user credit cards. They get only notifications about successful transactions. Plausible deniability is as smart in business as politics.
The Music Industry claims that Allofmp3 is illegal but their own lawyers tell them "... the music industry doesn't have much chance in succeeding (if they attack these companies who are using music files on the Internet under current Russian laws)." Instead they are pushing for changes in Russian copyright law but progress is glacial.
Chances that the loophole will be closed on short term are low and there is great resistance to changes.
As for the legality of non-Russian clients downloading from allofmp3 this is country dependent. In countries with liberal copyright protections, like the Netherlands, downloading is legal. In countries with stricter copyright protections its less clear.
MP3's, OGG's, etc are not illegal in the USA and therefore can be imported. There is also no law against importing music from other countries (including Russia). Because you are buying this legally in Russia and then importing to the USA, this should be 100% legit. The only applicable U.S. law appears to relate to the "Infringing importation of copies or phonorecords". But even this statute
"...does not apply to importation, for the private use of the importer and not for distribution..." If MP3's, OGG's etc are in fact considered phonorecords, U.S. citizens can legally buy these as long if they are for private use and not for distribution. If MP3s, OGG's etc. are not considered phonorecords, no import laws apply. The sections of digital audio recording and sound recording have no
mention of importation. Bottom line: Downloading from Allofmp3 is legal for U.S. Citizens, as long as the files are for private use and not for distribution." ~ Steve Schear

2005 - Dodges Bullet

2004 - Russian site is music to the ear
By Charles Wright
Over the past few weeks, purely as a research project of course, we have downloaded from the internet 4.74 GB of MP3 music, which amounts to 968 tracks or 56 albums - from a collection of artists that ranges from Norah Jones through the Beatles, Janis Ian, Otis Redding, Ray Charles, Paul Simon and Joni Mitchell to Miles Davis and Charles Mingus.
Had we been able to use the Apple iTunes music store - still not available in Australia - those downloads would have cost us US99 cents apiece, which works out to $US958, or about $A1300 in real money. On the Telstra music store, we would have been up for $1442, provided we were BigPond customers. Since we're not, our credit card would have had a $1829.52 work-out.
We weren't about to spend anything like that, but we also weren't prepared to do anything conspicuously illegal. We bought all those songs for $US48.65, or $66 in local currency, which works out, according to our arithmetic, to 6.8 cents a track.

Furdlog How Long Will This Last?
We weren't about to spend anything like that, but we also weren't prepared to do anything conspicuously illegal. We bought all those songs for $US 48.65, or $66 in local currency, which works out, according to our arithmetic, to 6.8 cents a track.
Thats the apparently insane price proposition that a Russian site called offers its customers. You buy your music by the megabyte, at the rate of 500 MB for $US 5 and you dial in the sort of encoding you want: MP3, MPEG4-AAC, OGG, MPC, WMA etc at various bit rates using different encoders _ say the LAME alt-presets. If we were prepared to pay more for the bandwidth, we could elect to have the music encoded with lossless algorithms, giving us the same quality as the original CD.
[There is no indication in our dealings with over several weeks that this is one of those dubious enterprises so much loved by the Russian mafia. Our credit card doesnt seem to have been abused, and while we have no legal qualifications, we can't see that it fails to comply with the Berne Convention on copyright. According to the company, All the materials in the MediaServices projects are available for distribution via internet, according to Licence # LS-3M-02-36 of the Russian Multimedia and Internet Society.
It claims it pays licence fees for all material on the site, subject to the law of the Russian Federation on copyright and related rights". We hope that this is correct, because under the terms of use, weve agreed we wont use their services if it is in conflict with legislation of your country".

Here are some answers on frequently asked questions.

  1. Is Allofmp3 legal?
  2. Is using Allofmp3 legal in my country?
  3. How can Allofmp3 be this cheap?
  4. Is it safe to pay by credit card?
  5. How can Allofmp3 legally offer Beatles and Metallica music?


  1. Russian 5c MP3 site 'unlicensed'
  2. Russian 'legal' music site offers songs for 5¢

Find out who said that the concert was dead and by the year 2000 all music would only be heard from radio and movies.