I would like to share many song/poetry/lyric works. I would like to share them as freely as possible, allowing modifications, use of small pieces or lines or concepts, etc.. I want to encourage commercial use of the material, but I would like to have the right to get a cut of any commercial proceeds. I have perused the Creative Commons licenses and it seems the choice is between allowing commercial use with no compensation, or simply not allowing it. Is there some sort of licensing choice that lies somewhere in between?
If you license something, you're giving people the freedom to use it under certain conditions (eg, for noncommercial purposes). That doesn't mean someone who wants to use it for commercial purposes can't do so—but they'll have to contact you first and negotiate a separate licence.
If you want, you could add an explicit commercial licence, but you'd have to state the prices and terms, and they should work for everyone, from the old lady who wants to use your poem in her home-printed poetry journal going to 90 subscribers, as well as for Disney who want to use your poem in their latest blockbuster.
I hope this provides you with an idea of how this works.
My production company provides event photography which we currently shoot and provide digital photos under a Creative Commons License CC BY-NC-SA 4.0
We used to keep ALL RIGHTS RESERVED but that meant clients broke the license by sharing photos online. So we changed it rather than risk our rights by not enforcing them.
So our licensing page now states:
Some event photography by Dreamspinner Media is licensed under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA, your booking agreement will state if this is the case with a section like this below. Creative Commons License Event photographs by Paul Zagoridis/Dreamspinner Media is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. Permissions beyond the scope of this license are available at http://dreamspinnermedia.com/photography/licensing. Contact us using the comment form below for additional licensing enquiries.
Editors feel free to obfuscate the url if it breaches the self-promotion guidelines of this site. It's in there to show that you MUST have contact details in your CC license.
So what that means is the photos can be used, changed and rereleased provided there is
- attribution to the source (me)
- the derived works are similarly licensed and attributed
So if a photograph is used by a media outlet, they should obtain an appropriate license from me. If they don't they can't claim they just grabbed it from the public domain.
When you wrote the lyrics down, you established a copyright on those lyrics. Nobody can legally use them for commercial purposes without your permission. That is what copyright means. They have to get a license from you, you don’t have to give one to them.
So the Creative Commons license that seems to you to be missing is not needed because that is the default license. That is the one that existed before Creative Commons. The one that everybody already has.
The Creative Commons licenses give you other options that not everybody needs. It sounds like you probably don’t need them.
So just publish your work in such a way that it includes a copyright notice and also contact info so that the reader can contact you for a commercial use license.
I have a practical problem with much of music licensing.
I sing with a Barbershop chorus, and with a couple of quartets. All of this is "non-profit", but it is not "non-commercial". We get paid for gigs, which give us a percentage of our yearly operating revenue.
I don't have a problem with buying music, or paying BMI when we have a show, or paying ASCAP an annual fee for using music -- actually we do all of there to have rights to sing almost anything.
If you have a song we want to arrange to sing, I need to know who to contact. I need to know what your procedure is for granting a license to arrange. When I have the arrangement, I need to know who to pay when I make copies of that arrangement for my singers. I need to know if the performance fees are included in the fees we pay to BMI and ASCAP, or if we have an additional liability to you.
This can be a maze that is hard for a volunteer, non-profit, but not non-commercial organization to work through.
I hope this gives you a framework within which you can find an answer that will serve your need, and ultimately the needs of thousands of small performers everywhere.