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  • Noob

I am a musician, and I would like to use short voice clips at the beginning and end of my song. The voice clips would be Robin Williams from one of his recorded Stand-Up Specials. The quotes are as follows:

Beginning of the song: "You're only given a little spark of madness. and if you lose that.....you're nothing."

End of the song: "come back, I'll be here. (audience applauds)"

Will I run into any legal trouble if I use these voice clips in my song and then attempt to sell it on various websites such as bandcamp, and release it on Spotify, iTunes, etc.? Thanks in advance.

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  • Noob

Ok. It's extremely unfortunate that you think I may run into legal problems if I release my song in this way; since the whole song is centered around never losing your "spark of madness" and is in a way a tribute to Robin Williams himself, hence the voice clips. But alright, thank you for the input. I would love for anyone else to share their opinion about this as well

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Personally, I would "err on the side of caution" if I intended to make commercial use of "anyone else's" material, "no matter how slight."

 

Find out who might possibly own the rights to that Robin Williams clip, and go on-record as having asked permission to use it. (As well as having "exercised due-diligence™" in seeking to discover who-to-ask.)

 

In this way, you show that you (a) "respected copyrights," and therefore (b) "covered your butt!" :)  You show that you recognized the legal possibility of infringement, and that you proactively sought to settle the matter to your satisfaction before proceeding.  Therefore, even if a Court of Law concludes that you were in error, you can in good faith plead "innocence."

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