Heald, Shi, Stoiber and Zheng (2012a)

From Copyright EVIDENCE

Advertising Architectural Publishing of books, periodicals and other publishing Programming and broadcasting Computer programming Computer consultancy Creative, arts and entertainment Cultural education

Film and motion pictures Sound recording and music publishing Photographic activities PR and communication Software publishing (including video games) Specialised design Television programmes Translation and interpretation

1. Relationship between protection (subject matter/term/scope) and supply/economic development/growth/welfare 2. Relationship between creative process and protection - what motivates creators (e.g. attribution; control; remuneration; time allocation)? 3. Harmony of interest assumption between authors and publishers (creators and producers/investors) 4. Effects of protection on industry structure (e.g. oligopolies; competition; economics of superstars; business models; technology adoption) 5. Understanding consumption/use (e.g. determinants of unlawful behaviour; user-generated content; social media)

A. Nature and Scope of exclusive rights (hyperlinking/browsing; reproduction right) B. Exceptions (distinguish innovation and public policy purposes; open-ended/closed list; commercial/non-commercial distinction) C. Mass digitisation/orphan works (non-use; extended collective licensing) D. Licensing and Business models (collecting societies; meta data; exchanges/hubs; windowing; crossborder availability) E. Fair remuneration (levies; copyright contracts) F. Enforcement (quantifying infringement; criminal sanctions; intermediary liability; graduated response; litigation and court data; commercial/non-commercial distinction; education and awareness)

Source Details

Heald, Shi, Stoiber and Zheng (2012)
Title: More Music in Movies: What Box Office Data Reveals About the Availability of Public Domain Songs in Movies from 1968-2008
Author(s): Heald, P. J., Shi, P., Stoiber, J., Zheng, Q.
Year: 2012
Citation: Heald, Paul J. and Shi, Peibei and Stoiber, Jeffrey and Zheng, Qingyao, More Music in Movies: What Box Office Data Reveals About the Availability of Public Domain Songs in Movies from 1968-2008 (December 12, 2012). Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, Vol. 9, No. 2, pp. 31-54, 2012; Illinois Public Law Research Paper No. 11-23.
Link(s): Open Access
Key Related Studies:
Discipline:
Linked by:
About the Data
Data Description: This paper utilizes three different datasets of selected songs, which are collected from different time periods.
Data Type: Secondary data
Secondary Data Sources:
Data Collection Methods:
Data Analysis Methods:
Industry(ies):
Country(ies):
Cross Country Study?: No
Comparative Study?: No
Literature review?: No
Government or policy study?: No
Time Period(s) of Collection:
  • 2012
Funder(s):
  • Not stated

Abstract

A previous empirical study suggested that as copyrighted songs transitioned into the public domain they were used just as frequently in movie soundtracks as when they were still legally protected. That study, however, did not account for the number people who viewed each movie in the theater. Since the debate over copyright term extension centers on the continuing “availability” of works as they fall into the public domain, a better measure of the availability of songs in movies would account for the relative box office success of the movies in which the songs appear. The present study collects box office data for hundreds of movies from 1968-2008 in which appeared hundreds of songs and concludes that public domain songs were heard by just as many people in movie theaters before and after they fell into the public domain.

Main Results of the Study

This paper examines accounts for the number tickets sold in order to measure popularity, and therefore the number of viewers of each movie while it played in theatres. More specifically, this paper shows that:

  • For both copyrighted songs and public domain songs, availability measured by ticket sales of movies using the songs increases by year.
  • The evidence does not show that availability is significantly influenced by the legal status of a song.
  • The inclusion of box office data and Billboard data into the analysis of song availability supports the conclusion reached by Heald (2009) that songs remain just as available to the public after they fall into the public domain.

Policy Implications as Stated By Author

  • Since copyright term extension incurs significant costs on consumers, lobbyists advocating for added protection bear a heavy burden of showing the negative consequences of works falling into the public domain.
  • Policy-making based on the assumption that availability declines when works fall in to the public domain and no longer have an owner has yet to find an empirical basis. Collectively, the studies should shift the burden of proof to copyright owners.



Coverage of Study

Coverage of Fundamental Issues
Issue Included within Study
Relationship between protection (subject matter/term/scope) and supply/economic development/growth/welfare
Relationship between creative process and protection - what motivates creators (e.g. attribution; control; remuneration; time allocation)?
Green-tick.png
Harmony of interest assumption between authors and publishers (creators and producers/investors)
Effects of protection on industry structure (e.g. oligopolies; competition; economics of superstars; business models; technology adoption)
Understanding consumption/use (e.g. determinants of unlawful behaviour; user-generated content; social media)
Coverage of Evidence Based Policies
Issue Included within Study
Nature and Scope of exclusive rights (hyperlinking/browsing; reproduction right)
Green-tick.png
Exceptions (distinguish innovation and public policy purposes; open-ended/closed list; commercial/non-commercial distinction)
Mass digitisation/orphan works (non-use; extended collective licensing)
Licensing and Business models (collecting societies; meta data; exchanges/hubs; windowing; crossborder availability)
Fair remuneration (levies; copyright contracts)
Enforcement (quantifying infringement; criminal sanctions; intermediary liability; graduated response; litigation and court data; commercial/non-commercial distinction; education and awareness)

Datasets

Sample size: 601
Level of aggregation: Song
Period of material under study: 1968-2007


Sample size: 693
Level of aggregation: Song
Period of material under study: 1923-1932


Sample size: 257
Level of aggregation: Song
Period of material under study: