The FM office was alive with debate this morning as it surfaced that both the drum loop and the main riff from the club-classic Faxing Berlin by Deadmau5 are available as loops in FL Studio 8. Not only that, but a little-known artist is currently being struck down by the wrath of the law for using the loop (which he assumed was Royalty-free and claims to have used not knowing it was Deadmau5's riff) in a recent release.
Both the drum loop and the chords from the track, available under Melody Loops Pack in the browser and called LP_Faxing Berlin A_128bpm.ogg and LP_Faxing Berlin C_128bpm.ogg, are embedded within a host of other loops which Image Line are now claiming are not royalty-free after all and only the one-shots that come with FL are available for commercial use.
Here's the original Faxing Berlinhref> if you don't know it already, and here's Dirty Circuit's Berlinhref> track.
Image Line's Jean-Marie Cannie had this to say on the IL forum:
"The loops & demo songs are available to demo what's capable in FL Studio ... it doesn't
mean you can just render the songs & loops and start selling them as your own.
The (single hit) samples sure are ready to use in a composition but it should be pretty clear
that anything else (whether it's a demo song, melodic loop, score, ...) belongs to its author(s). "
However, the debate brought up some interesting points. One rattled FL user writes:
"Demo songs are one thing; they're clearly by FL users, copyrighted (with notices of such), and meant to display the power and features of FL. But uncredited (and with no notice of copyright) "melodic loops" stuck in the same folder as royalty free "drum loops" in a GIANT DIRECTORY FULL OF ROYALTY FREE SAMPLES? It would take a borderline paranoid individual to even THINK that these samples might actually be unsafe to use."
The debate continues to rage over at the Image Line forumhref> and no doubt will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
FM are on the case to get a reply from Image Line, but as it stands, it's a pretty bizarre scenario. Who is at fault here? Image Line for providing the loops without clear statement that they are not royalty-free? The artist for taking a clear loop from FL and 'selling it' as his own? Then again, plenty of GarageBand samples have been used to create number one records – isn't that the point?
What do you think? Man steals from Deadmau5? Image Line steal from Deadmau5? Man perfectly within his rights? Or 'ouch, my brain hurts'?
And speaking of the 'mau5, be sure to check out a more relaxed, less litigious, Deadmau5 in our issue preview a few posts down – and the full interview in the next issue of FM – on sale 28th November. Oh and stay away from those FL loops – they're not yours. Apparently.