FAQ: Background Environmental Music

Where will my music be used?

Your music will be played mostly at physical locations of retailers, food & beverage outlets, fashion chains, shopping malls, country clubs & resorts, hotels, etc. It is marketed under www.ExpressMelody.com which streams your music through a cloud platform that our clients log in to.

What if my music is already assigned to a royalty collection society, collective management organisation or performing rights society?

We strictly do not accept music from members of any local and international royalty collection societies, collective management organisations (CMO) or performing rights societies (PRS). Due to worldwide regulations in music legal licensing rights, we only accept non-members of these societies and organisations.

What is the royalties cut?

50% of the revenue collected for streaming of background environmental music will form the total royalties to be distributed to our pool of musicians with music played at our clients’ locations.

How royalties are calculated based on play-counts?

From the total royalties collected, it will be distributed proportionately to each genre based on the usage of our clients. For example if $10,000 is attributed, then it will be divided equally among the number of total play-counts (e.g. 50,000 overall) before multiplying by the number of times your music track (e.g. 2,500) has been played. Thus, in this example it is $500.

When and how do I receive payment?

You will be able to see a statement report and the dashboard will clearly indicate the amount as well as play-counts for the quarter. You have the option to cash out every quarter or after you accumulate a comfortable amount.

Do I need to pay any entry fee to submit my songs?

No, this is a free for you to upload. We pay when your songs are being used.

How many touch-points (i.e. physical locations) have you covered?

We have a few hundreds of physical locations covered now but aim to reach 5,000 physical locations especially through major retail chains and food & beverage giants.

Can I put ANY music?

Strictly no vulgarities or coarse language as this will get your account banned. Only upload music that we require – you will be able to know through our genre listing.

Is there a limit to the number of songs I can upload?

Feel free to upload any amount of songs onto the platform. The more you upload, the higher total number of play-counts and royalties you will receive if clients use your music tracks as background environmental music.

What quality of songs will be accepted or rejected?

On your music dashboard, you will be able to see 3 different statuses: “Pending”, “Accepted” and “Rejected”. Only those “Accepted” will be stream into our system successfully. The quality of sound recordings must be acceptable by industry standards as what you will usually hear in-stores.

Any other music technical details I need to pay attention to before uploading?

All you need to do is ensure each music track is at least 1min30 seconds long, a minimum of 128kbps, in MP3 format and less than 8MB in size.

Is my music rights assigned to you exclusively?

We operate on a non-exclusive rights medium in which you can use the songs elsewhere, it is good news that you are not restricted. You can take down the music tracks any time you like. Please note that should you sign up with any local and international royalty collection societies, collective management organisations (CMO) or performing rights societies (PRS) at any point of time, you are to strictly remove all tracks under your charge.

FAQ: Crowdsourcing for Jingle/Voiceover

How do I express interest in the Music Request?

It's a breeze! Simply set up a profile and start reviewing Music Requests. You may express your interest to a maximum of 3 Music Requests at a time. Choose those that you are comfortable and confident in producing. You may submit more than one track for each project. Join for free – and get paid for your efforts when chosen!

How much time am I given to produce the music piece?

The duration of Music Request is set by the Music Requestor and it can range from 3 days to 21 days on average. Time is of essence, but quality matters too.

Can clients download my music illegally?

Your music will be automatically watermarked when you upload to our website. This prevents clients from illegally downloading the music as it would be embedded with 'noise'. Therefore, your music will be protected.

Can I copy or use other existing music works?

All music works must be in its original form of creation and absolutely no infringement of copyrights. We like to see your truest talent and not seeing you get into the wrong side of law. Be original!

What format should I submit?

The ideal format should be in MP3, if not otherwise stated in the Music Request.

Why did the Music Request page close suddenly?

It means a final musician was selected or the music project is prematurely closed by the client.

What are ways to increase my chances of getting selected as the final musician?

READ the brief. Very specific guides are often found in the brief itself. If you are unclear, feel free to message the client for better clarification. The sound quality and amount of time you indicate to produce the music piece will be important factors. Your profile page plays a part too! Past music pieces that you upload on your profile page are indications of your music quality. Tip: Keep updated with the Music Requester's comments throughout the contest period and edit your music piece accordingly.

Will I get the full reward based on the pledge of budget in the Music Request?

Your efforts will be remunerated. Please note that an administration fee will be absorbed on your end when remitted through PayPal or bank transfers. All amounts transacted to you will be in US Dollars (USD$).

How will my efforts be paid through?

We ensure that your efforts will be recognized and duly paid as soon as the Music Requester downloads your music piece. Your remuneration will be paid to you either via cheque or bank transfer or PayPal (Any form of administration cost will be absorbed by the musician).

Is this similar to participating in a music-composing competition?

We see this as a platform in support towards musician development. Music is something very subjective to individuals' ears. This is an opportunity to put your talent across in expressing music through original works by you.

Communication with Music Requester is important!

Communicate through the Discussion Board with Music Requester – This will help you better understand the Music Brief, and minimize the editing process.

Can I withdraw from the Music Request after being selected as the final musician?

Not at this moment as we do not have this automatic function for withdrawal. However, you can write in an email to us.

Do I own the copyrights of the song?

Copyright of the song is owned by you and the amount pledged is a form of remuneration in support towards your effort in producing the music piece. Should the Music Requester requires the copyrights, it will be an additional premium paid to you and it will be clearly stated that copyrights is needed. However, this rarely happens.

What do number of licensing years indicate and mean?

It means the copyrights of the song still rightfully belong to you. We operate on a non-exclusive rights medium in which you can use the songs elsewhere. The number of years indicated is issued to client for the number of years they are allowed to use.

What happens if my music is not selected?

You are free to do anything with the music as full rights still belong to you. Only the winning entry gets paid.

When do I get paid when my music is selected?

Once you are declared as the winner of the project, you will usually be paid within 7-14 working days. However, if there are unforeseen circumstances, you will be duly notified and be communicated of any delays.

Do I get paid royalties if client decides to license my music?

It will be royalty-free and on a work-for-hire mode.

If the client selects my music but wants to do up some changes or revision, am I supposed to entertain such requests?

Yes, we do allow the client to perform a maximum of up to 2 changes. As a selected winning entry and that you will be paid, you are obligated to do up the changes.

FAQs for Clients

There will only be 1 component for clients’ FAQ because the ‘background environmental music’ one will be diverted to ExpressMelody.com directly. There should be 2 components for the musicians’ FAQ. You can refer to the current http://www.expressinmusic.com/home/faq.aspx for reference.

How do I get to know more about the background environmental music streaming solution?

Please visit www.ExpressMelody.com for more details.

How do I post a Music Brief?

First, get registered to be a Music Requester ("Client"). Next, start to create your Music Brief by selecting the necessary fields. Upon agreement with the price, we will check through the brief. Once all’s ok, you will be sent a PayPal URL link to make a payment before your brief is officially on our site and shouted out to our talents.

How long do I run this Music Brief?

The duration of Music Brief can range from average 3 days to 21 days, depending on how fast you need it to be. However, if you need it in less than 3 days, do let us know and we will have a special arrangement for you. No submissions will be allowed after the closing date. You will have 7 days to select the winning track after the closing date. To speed up the process, you can select your final musician as soon as you feel that he/she is THE ONE. This will allow the musician to have more time to edit/create your music piece.

Why is there random noise when I listen to the entries?

The noise you hear is known as "Watermark". This is to prevent illegal downloading of the entries sent in. At the same time protect both you and the musicians. Upon selecting the winner, the watermark will be removed and you can download the actual track.

Can I ask the musician to edit certain parts of the song?

Yes we allow up to a maximum of 2 edits. Be sure and clear of your directions, give precise instructions. You will have to select the musician as the winner to ask him/her to work on the edits.

Can I give feedback to musicians who submit their music tracks?

Yes! Everyone loves a two-way communication! You will be able to communicate with the musicians via the Facebook comment box and advise them on any part of the track that may need editing. If you would like to drop them a private message, just click on their user name. This is also a form of encouragement and motivation to the musician if you take the effort to give feedback to their submissions. The more you communicate with the musician, the faster and better your final music piece will be. This will also show your passion and high regards to your Music Brief.

How much does it cost and how is the payment being made?

Upon selecting the required fields of the Music Brief, you will be made known the total cost. Payment details will be sent to your email.

Is this similar to a music-composing competition?

Yes indeed! It is like a music-composing competition whereby you will be the judge to decide who the final musician to compose your song is. As a judge, you have the right to choose and also reject music pieces. Upon the download of the final song piece, we will award the prize money to the deserving musician!

How do I write a good Music Brief?

Communicate as clearly as possible the feeling, idea and message you wish to express in the song. Highlight the key message to convey to specific target audience(s). A good music brief will provide a clear direction without an overload of details. You can read past music briefs on our website too. If you still have doubts, feel free to drop us an email.

Can I change the details of my Music Brief at a later date?

You will NOT be able to make any changes after submission of the Music Brief. You may confuse the musicians by changing the details while they are working on your Music Request. Please ensure you have the correct details in your Music Brief before making payment.

Can I end my Music Brief early?

Yes, you may end your Music Request before the closing date as soon as you have selected your final musician. By doing so, it means that you have closed this Music Request to all other musicians.

What if I do not like any of the music pieces submitted?

If you do not like any of the submissions, you can select the music piece that is the closest to what you want and share with the musicians what is to be edited.

Do I own the copyrights of the music piece?

Copyright of the music piece is owned by the musician and the amount pledged is a form of remuneration in support towards their effort in producing your music piece. Should you request for the owning of copyrights, kindly state that in your licensing rights that you wish to have the copyrights at a premium. Alternatively, you can request for an exclusive licensing rights to the usage of the music.

How many days am I given to choose the winning entry?

At the end (close) of the Music Brief, you have up to 7 days to choose the winning entry. If you haven’t choose the winning entry by then, we will then be choosing on your behalf by default. You will not be able to select the winner thereafter as we had chosen it for you.

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