First impressions matter a lot. And one of the first experiences a customer has with a company is often the answering machine or IVR . The music used in these systems plays a crucial role in creating a welcoming and professional atmosphere, but it is essential not to underestimate the importance of respecting copyright laws.

The basics of copyright law

Copyright is an essential component of the protection of intellectual property. They guarantee creators control over their works.

This means that any original creation, whether texts, photos, music, is automatically protected by copyright as soon as it is created. These rights include:

Right of reproduction: This is the right to authorize the reproduction of your musical work, whether in the form of a recording, a physical or digital copy.
Right of distribution: . This is the right to transmit or make music available to the public.
Right of public communication: This is the right to authorize the public communication of the work, whether on radio, television, on the internet, etc.
Right of transmogrification: This is the right to authorize the creation of derivative versions of the musical work, such as remixes, instrumental versions or adaptations into other languages.

SACEM intervenes abroad either directly by creating a dedicated company, or by concluding a representation agreement with a local society of authors

Copyright infringement can have serious legal consequences. Penalties vary depending on the severity of the violation, but can include substantial fines, damages to be paid to the injured party, or even prison time. It is essential to ensure that you comply with all copyright laws and check the appropriate licenses to avoid any legal issues related to the use of music for your answering machines and music on hold.

The use of music by call centers

When using our business phone software at Ubicentrex to manage answering machines, there may be specific challenges related to the use of music. Choosing the right music is essential to providing an enjoyable experience for your callers, but respecting copyright is just as crucial.

To choose music without infringing copyright, you have several options:

  • You can opt for licensed music, which means you have obtained permission from the artist or record label to use it.
  • There are also online music libraries where you can purchase tracks with specific usage licenses.
  • You can choose royalty-free music, which is usually free provided you follow the terms of use specified by the creator. This music is not subject to any royalties from SACEM and SCPA . If you want to check that music is copyright free, you can consult the catalogs of these same two organizations. It is not obligatory to declare the use of royalty-free music to organizations.
  • The fees paid to SACEM cover the rights of the authors responsible for the lyrics and the composers behind the music you use. At the same time, payments to the SCPA are intended to compensate the artists performing these songs as well as the producers who financed the recordings you use. It is important to note that even if you have made a declaration to SACEM for musical use while waiting, this does not exempt you from the obligation to obtain prior authorization from the SCPA.

Public domain

A musical composition enters the public domain as soon as the exclusivity on this work expires, i.e. after a period of 70 years from January 1 of the year following the death of the author. Therefore, it is no longer necessary to pay copyright fees or obtain permission to reproduce or use the work. In other words, it’s perfectly legal to choose Beethoven’s Third Symphony or compositions from before the 1950s as your phone on hold music.

Ubicentrex offers you different music. When music is not copyright free, we notify it.

Please note, if you choose no-royalty free music, it is your responsibility to make the declarations and pay the royalties.