Asked in Copyright for Massachusetts

Q: Am I allowed to publish my old LP collection on YouTube? Are there also state laws prohibiting this in Massachusetts?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Robert Kost
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  • Intellectual Property Lawyer
  • Pittsburgh, PA

A: By "publish," do you mean digitize and upload? Without knowing more, I believe the answer is pretty clearly NO.

Section 114 of the Copyright Act speaks directly to "sound recording" rights in, for example, your old LPs. That right belongs to the copyright owner.

I know the practice on YouTube is pretty fast and loose with copyright (I've seen all kinds of albums there), but that doesn't mean you are "allowed" (in keeping with your question).

Massachusetts law is pre-empted by federal law, meaning that there is no "Massachusetts copyright," but there may be many theories that apply, involving Massachusetts common law of torts and/or commercial and regulatory law.

Hope this helps.

- Rob

Marcos Garciaacosta
Marcos Garciaacosta
  • Intellectual Property Lawyer
  • Mesa, AZ

A: Don't do it.

You would be likely blocked in You tube and maybe even sued.

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