Copyright - What it means to you...
When you buy a tab book created by a talented and dedicated dulcimer artist, you are doing your part to ensure that there will be more books, workshops, and performances from that same artist in the future.
But when you copy even a single page from this book to share with others, not only are you breaking the law, you are also depriving the artist of a chunk of income they depend on to pay the mortgage, buy groceries and gasoline, and produce more books.
But somehow, it seems okay to share a digital page -- or even an entire digital book -- with a friend or two.
So what exactly can you do with this digital book you’re about to purchase?
You can load it onto your own personal device, such as a computer, phone, or tablet. It is a very convenient way to have all your music in digital format which can easily be carried to a jam, club meeting, or performance.
But -- this convenience also makes it easy and tempting to share your digital pages with owners of these same devices. After all, you’re not photocopying anything, you’re simply sending a page -- or an entire book -- from your device to your friend’s device.
Nothing wrong with that, right?
Wrong. Whether you copy a physical page on a Xerox machine or send a digital page via an email, or through some other electronic means (such as AirDrop), you have broken the law, and you have literally stolen money from the artist who created the book.
Sharing your digital copies of music is not considered “fair use,” “for educational purposes,” or “not-for-profit.” It is stealing. It is illegal.
Ask yourself this question: If I enjoy this dulcimer book so much that I want to share it with others, why wouldn’t I encourage others to support this artist by purchasing the book?
Please -- do the Right Thing.
For more information on copyright, and how it applies to dulcimer players, here's a page by Carol Walker (MusicLadyCarol.com) that'll give you more background on the subject.