Sampling – Moral Code

I do not believe sampling without permission is morally acceptable if the person doing so is trying to make money off of it. If sampling is used for the personal and/or educational purposes, I believe it is fine. Realistically, I know it’s not as black and white as that. Especially with the rise of social media and streaming sites/apps such as SoundCloud and YouTube, many people could upload their music for personal reasons, not intending to make any money off of it, yet still gain a lot of credit or fame and still possibly harm the sales of the original song and artist.

I realize there are also gray areas when it comes to what parts are sampled. As we discussed in class, if there was a problem with bass lines being sampled, we would be in quite a pinch, as there are not many different bass lines out there (at least for the type of music we’d be using it for). But for certain melodic guitar riffs or vocals or lyrics, it becomes much more obvious.

I know I wouldn’t feel comfortable if someone used my music without permission. It’s not so much a matter of if I would say yes or no (I would probably be all for letting them use my music), but the matter of respect. Granted, things might change were I to become rich and famous; perhaps I wouldn’t worry so much if I were already established and well off. But when it all comes down to it, if the music were going to be exposed to the public (and not for educational purposes), I do not think sampling without permission is morally acceptable.


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