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   A few words about Private and Common
If you are a Tracker, then you've met this problem once. You've composed a module, it is uploaded to server and people all over the world are enjoying your talent. What if they are not just enjoying, but ripping your work at samples, examples, patterns? Let's discuss this.

I won't look at this with legal point of view. Generally, there aren't so much standards of audio data storage. I'm marking out only two of'em: pattern order and pre-rendered. It's all simple with the second case: you can use it just for common ideas, general examples and basic samples. Well, it's a very rough opinion - any professional musician will find a hundreds of ways to use pre-rendered audio in his own work. Nevertheless, I'll keep on my view.
Pattern order can be described by next two variations: MIDI and module. The last one is a MIDI evolution, because not only pattern order is stored within the one file. Sound samples (instruments) are also stored inside module file. I was a member of team developing a hybrid of MIDI and module. A file of such format should have unlimited pattern orders and used samples bank within the whole. We failed, cause such kind of files already exist. They are used in gaming consoles and called "sequences" (Sony PlayStation, SNES and many, many more). I won't judge what way is the best suitable - MIDI or module? Both of'em are united with a feature called "open source". Truly said, I don't like MIDI (by historical reasons, nothing personal) so I'll use quotes from the world of tracking.

What is "a module"? Module is a strictly logical chain of notes, effects, control commands and samples. It is opened for anyone by defaults. You can take a soundtrack for "Unreal" game and use it to learn *how* it was created any time you want. You can merely rip it, mix it and use as your own! That depends nothing but on your own conscience. Some modules are "protected" by copyright laws and authorships, but it's a fake cause module source is opened by defaults.
Saying generally, all copyrights are kept only by user's conscience. When you got a module you are free to do anything with it. For instance, I've once downloaded a module called "Aquatique" (by dfast). And I've found a cut from Nighthawk's "Annie" while listening this module. That was not a "drum cut" or "inspired by" - that was a total rip of melody! There would not be any trouble, if dfast'd mentioned this fact in commentaries. There was no commentaries. I can download a wrong version of module, so I can beg my pardons to dfast, if I'm mistaken. This file was downloaded from MODARCHIVE and its upload processor does not like any included files instead of module(s) itself. May be there were any commentaries. Hope so...
Please, don't think I'm non-modest, but I've used some elements from "Unreal - Main Title" (by Alexander Brandon and Michiel van den Bos, OST "Unreal") in my module "Valley of Silence". Go and read - did I mention about that fact in commentaries. Yes, I did. As for me, it's a simple rules of good form to say thanks to people, whose samples I'm using. I don't care what're they thinking about this. Based on mentioned fact (about "Aquatique") I felt a bit curiosity: "Are there any counter-evidences?" I've found nothing in overwhelming majority cases. I'm assuming I was lame in choosing modules for all my "Internet career". Most of people don't care about such things. Just something like "thanks & greetz to (friends, girls, etc)", "sample-cd", "unknown". Some are plumping: "all samples made by me"! :-/ And what if I prove this (this, this and that too) sample was ripped from this (this, this and that) author?
Ok, let's stop this flimflam. Do you remember the title of this article? Let's re-ask it: to rip or not to rip? Even William Shakespeare has no answer. :D The standard is "open source" by defaults, this means your hands are free. This is my opinion. Rip! No shame, no regrets. And nothing personal. Nothing can teach better then someone's experience. Guides and tutorial courses are good, but they have no real value without practice. You can get your own experience in no other way then just use other people experience. And we will grab the samples. In wholesale. :) But be noticed about just one thing: please, respect the work of other people if you want your work to be respected. And feel free to say: "thank you".
I'm not summoning your honesty and openness. You have to answer this question by yourself. If you're worrying someone will rip you music - pre-render it. And dream sweet. There're many examples of such solution. Just look through MODULEZ.ORG for example. You're taking no risk saying nothing about used samples, examples, works. There is a very pathetic chance someone will judge you. Spam-filters are working with no break, if the situation are going wrong. ;) But can you ignore the internal voice of your conscience? I doubt about that. The taste of only honest work is really delicious.


Darth 'Snake' Nefelim,
specially for MODULEZ.ORG

p.s. Please, take my apologies, if I wrote something wrong about You. Email me in this case and I'll make corrections to this text.


 
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