You are musician and concerned about your copyright? Legally speaking, your creative works are yours by nature, but for potential conflicts in the future you need to have evidence that you created your art first. Regstones delivers you this evidence: simple, innovative, legally qualified, lightning fast, and for as little as 1,45€. Likely the cheapest way to get peace of mind.
Be creative, then use us - Your Regstones Team
As active musicians we always had this challenge that you might know very well: to build our fan base, we published and distributed our songs quite generously via Soundcloud, via YouTube, via mail campaigns, you name it. And we always had this bad feeling: what happens if someone steals our ideas, our hook-lines, pieces of our lyrics, or even entire songs? Will we be well enough equipped to claim our copyright?
We searched for a legally valid, broadly accepted, long-time seal on our creative works but simple and cheap, no expensive notary services and surely not a service where you must create accounts, do regular payments, and then hope that the provider will still exist when you may finally need its support. We wanted something as simple as possible, but we didn’t find it. So, we created this service ourselves and called it Regstones (a short form for “register tones”).
Nearly all countries in the world have signed off the so-called Berne Convention, which means that in these countries your creative works (songs, melodies, lyrics…) are enjoying copyright protection by nature. You will only need to evidence that you created this art first. But that’s the tricky thing: how to do this, also for disputes that might occur in years from now? Simple date entries of recording files are no proof, everybody can change system time easily. Postal timestamps on letters used to send your CD to yourself do not have legal proof capability neither , as it is too easy to produce a simple physical stamp. The need is for a sufficiently strong, long-time valid, and legally accepted evidence.
Musicians in the US: please note that you have a special national context with your copyright office. We do not claim to replace the services it offers.
Regstones delivers you a long-term valid “I have my art already now” evidence. On our site you enter your identity (name and date of birth) and your song name reference. Then you select a file representing your art (e.g. your entire song as mp3 or your partitions, lyrics or similar as pdf or word file). Our service then calculates a unique digital fingerprint of your respective file, in a process that cannot be reverse-engineered (the technical term is “hashing”, we use the SHA-256 algorithm). We combine this fingerprint and your identity into a pdf file, and let this pdf file immediately digitally sign and timestamp by a trust service provider of the European Union, one of the few organizations worldwide who show certified compliance with the eIDAS regulation. The signature applied is LTV-enabled (LTV = “Long-Term Validation”). With this, the document can confirm at any time in the future, in spite of technological and other advances, that the signature and all related certificates were valid at the time of the applied timestamp , and that the content of the pdf has not been altered since its signature at the stamped time, which establishes the evidence that you indeed had your art created already at this time. The LTV quality of the signature allows you to use or to archive each evidence document for many years, even many decades.
When you receive the evidence pdf, we recommend strongly that you store it safely (e.g. on a memory stick, on a google drive or similar), and that you keep the very same file that you used for our service; ideally store it next to the evidence document. Please note: you MUST keep the very same file that you used for our service, as your evidence document will only establish the copyright evidence in combination with that file. Any other file, even if only one bit is different, would produce a different fingerprint and will therefore not allow you to demonstrate later that your file is indeed the timestamped one.
In case of a future conflict about your copyright, you need to be able to assemble enough evidence to demonstrate that you created this art first. Therefore, you need to reassure that your performance rights association can and will support your claim in case of a conflict. This will require that you have early on submitted your partitions or songs, AND the organization is ready to hand out this evidence to support your case, AND (!) you are still member of this association in that future moment. Regarding the GEMA in particular, note that this association is obliged to neutrality in case of copyright conflicts. You can read more in the GEMA FAQs (unfortunately only available in German).
If you want to be independent of all these limitations, you should consider our service.