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Rights in musical works

2 min read

What are rights in musical works?

These are the rights granted to authors and, thus, to songwriters of musical works under copyright law.

What are rights in musical works?

Rights in musical works derive from and include both and . Economic rights can be either or . Economic rights in musical works are also called publishing rights.

See a breakdown of those rights on our pages on Copyright and Related Rights, Moral Rights, Economic Rights, and Common Music Industry Rights.

Who has the rights in musical works?

who qualify as an automatically own the of the they create. They can transfer most of their economic rights, typically to who become . In some cases, the or employer may have the rights under copyright law or by contract.

In the music industry, most are the result of collaboration, in which case rights are usually co-owned and shared among various rights holders. In other words, the income from the use of musical works will be shared among its various songwriters and music publishers.

How long does copyright last?

Copyright protection starts with the creation of a musical work and, in most countries, lasts until 50, 70, or 90 years after the death of the longest-living songwriter of that musical work.

To find out the terms of copyright protection in your country, ask your or your country’s national .

When works are no longer subject to copyright protection, they enter the ; for more information, visit the Public Domain page.

Image credit: Cottonbro Studio