Copyright laws and live streaming

Phil cracks me up with his “deep” legal background, even by UK standards.
That said, Digital DJ Tips is a phenomenal resource. Just wish he’d stay in his wheelhouse.

Unless you live in China (who doesn’t respect international law in these areas) it doesn’t really matter where the stream is originating from, but where it’s being “performed” and/or “recorded”.
The ONLY reason that we haven’t seen active litigation is because they have all ended in pre-litigation settlement (even if not publicized).
Often this leads to bankruptcy over legal fee’s, or a deal was struck for acquisition (Chew) but eventually, everyone get’s the letter. I guess if we want to be the first platform NOT to cease & desist we could define case law on the topic moving forward but I doubt it would be in our favor.

The only way that MixCloud can offer what they claim is to have a negotiated agreement licensing the “performance” of given labels works on the platform. This is cost prohibitive to say the absolute least and is the reason no one else makes these claims.

No free lunch guys, the way Armin and other’s at that level do it is because they are label bosses and own the rights to all the music that is good in their genre. I absolutely detest that model of business in this industry but it’s 100% how you “succeed” by certain standards.


While I agree, to be fair, the wording originated pretty much from the original Mixcloud blog post. They have always promoted themselves as being “legal”, which is a fair point.

The thing is, even though I am an artist myself, I despise the current copyright mafia with their teeth in all arts, not only music. I don’t have any issues with paying artists for their work, totally opposite. I just really hate that the big players keep over 95% of the money that should go to the artists.

As a DJ I feel that when I’m playing music produced by other artists, I’m actively promoting their work. I have already paid for that music (I try my best to never ever play anything I haven’t paid for. If I play promos I also make sure to buy the originals as well, even though I get the promos for free) and at least in Finland if I pay extra for the copyright mafia from my random gigs, almost all the money goes to the big system and artists themselves literally see pennies. I much more prefer having direct ways to support (all) artists and I want also play my part of raising these issues to make the laws better. (Like I’ve explained elsewhere, the Finnish law explicitly states that “if a piece of music is intended to be played publicly, it is free to play by anyone”.)

That said, if a Finnish DJ wants to report their playlists from Slipmat to the Finnish mafia, they are totally free to do so and they can use already working systems that they use for other gigs as well. (In practise you just need to report the tunes you play, everything else is automatic.) Slipmat is 100% legal in every way possible, we just don’t tax anything extra from any DJ but instead do everything we can to give as much to the DJs and artists as we can.


Oh it’s a mess, no doubt about that.

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“…MixCloud could use this time to break into the mainstream and become THE platform for streaming DJ’s”

Does phil even know about us? Imma work on that…

I’m not really getting the legal case for slipmat yet. As I understand from the video, mixcloud’s functionality is a bit beta, but at least it’s legal because they pay royalties. And as far as I can tell, it’s the only streaming platform that looks after the legal bits for you. My understanding is that slipmat trusts the streamer to look after their own legal bits, so is essentially hands off in this regard. Do I understand correctly?

That’s true only if there’s something to look at and exactly that is my gripe with them. If you happen to live in a place that does not require DJs to pay additional royalties on top of what they already pay in the form of a DJ license, the money is now taken not one but two artists as both the DJ or the swongwriters get only the tiniest bits of that royalty money.

There are much, much better ways to distribute money to artists and we should together strive for a better world where huge corporations get less and the performers get more.

Yes, you’re exactly correct.


As an interesting development regarding these discussions, I’ve today learned more on how Slipmat could officially support artists via official channels.

Turns out starting a radio station in Finland “only” costs about 6000 euros on top of which you need to pay ~10% of whatever you earn with your radio, but at minimum ~1000 euros a month. This means that if we get ~200 Frankie Pro subscribers we could set up a 100% legit FM RADIO that would cover the whole Finland but would also be allowed to stream anywhere in the world :slight_smile:

There are probably a ton of more business-related issues to figure out but this doesn’t seem at all impossible. And as a super cool added benefit, Slipmat streams could actually be heard on FM radio anywhere in Finland :smiley:

I’m actually quite sure that actual costs are likely to be ~10x the listed prices (as one would have to pay for broadcasting, all kinds of paperwork and stuff like that) but still, it’s an interesting idea. I’m going to draft out a simple business plan based on current Slipmat base and see if someone would be interested in launching a proper startup. It would be kind of cool to get to properly fight with the big boys :facepunch:


I’m sure you could start a legit internet radio station for a lot less money?

According to my sources who actually know how these things work, here in Finland the above path would be the least difficult / expensive. (If Phil from Digital DJ Tips is right it would also be similar to what Mixcloud is doing but from UK.)

Anyways, this all obviously needs much deeper digging to be sure about anything.


That sounds like a fantastic idea. And maybe feasible for less that 200 pro subscribers if some of us were prepared to chuck a little extra in specifically to cover this.