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Old Dec 6, 2016, 11:32 AM
wesen wesen is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2016
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Default Who has the rights to publish the music of a game?


there are many games with music that I like and that don't have a soundtrack CD released yet.

Therefore I would like to ask the people who have the rights to create and sell such CDs to do so, but I don't know which persons that are.
Is it the composer of the songs or the publisher of the game or maybe someone else?
If it's the publisher who will have the rights when he's bankrupt and doesn't exist anymore? If it's the composer who gets the rights when he dies?

Some popular examples of games like this are:

* Sonic 3 & Knuckles
* Spyro 1,2,3
* Ratchet & Clank 1,2,3
* Rayman 1,2,3

Thanks in advance for any helpful tips.
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Old Dec 6, 2016, 01:29 PM
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Efendija Efendija is offline
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It can be awfully complicated. Companies usually secure the rights for a certain time period. A lot of the specifics can be worked out through a contract though. Various things come into play, e.g. author can be a regular employee of the company or a freelance who gets hired for a specific work etc.

Rights can't last forever and all works will eventually enter the public domain. PD for game music isn't of use to any of us because we'll be long gone when it happens. For example the US law:

Works Created on or after January 1, 1978
The law automatically protects a work that is created and fixed in a tangible medium of expression on or after January 1, 1978, from the moment of its creation and gives it a term lasting for the author's life plus an additional 70 years. For a "joint work prepared by two or more authors who did not work for hire," the term lasts for 70 years after the last surviving author's death. For works made for hire and anonymous and pseudonymous works, the duration of copyright is 95 years from first publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter

But before entering the PD, assuming the author had the relevant rights at the time of death and not compan(ies) which may still hold some of them, the successors get them.

In any case, you asking the right person/company to release the OSTs will hardly make a difference.
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Old Dec 6, 2016, 01:58 PM
Renatar Renatar is offline
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If you got some capital you could always try finding out where music rights belong, ten licensing said music and putting out a release yourself . A few labels like Data Discs and Brave Wave are doing so actually.
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