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Does Music In DJ TechTools’ Videos Help Or Hurt Artists?

Hey guys and gals, we have an important question for you and need the community’s help! Should DJ TechTools be able to use anyone’s music in our tutorial videos – and does the use of that music help or hurt the artists? You are the best people to answer this question – so in today’s post I turn to you for help, and feedback. More details and the backstory after the jump:

Many of you love Chris Brackley’s excellent tutorial video work. Recently he showed everyone how to combine Mixemergency with Tratkor in a great tutorial on our YouTube channel. In that video, he demonstrated the concept using an excellent song from Ten Walls called “Walking with Elephants”,  which has become quite the hit lately.

About a month ago we got an email from Material Music asking us to pay a license fee for this song or take down the video. Before we could come to an agreement on the music, they reported the video to youtube and had it taken down.

Long story short, this not only means a good tutorial is gone – but YouTube has penalized our account and removed all in-video links through to the blog, which really hurts this community. We have asked Ten Walls’ management to undo this reporting so we can remove the video on our own, but they have not responded to any requests.



Ok, so how can you help? Well, I would ask two things of our loyal and amazing readers:

  1. Answer a few questions in the comments about how you feel – do our videos help or hurt artists?
  2. Let  Ten Walls  (Mario Bassanov) and their management know they should reconsider!

First, here are the questions we are wondering: 

  • Do you discover new tracks through our videos?
  • Do the tutorials inspire you to then purchase the music?
  • Do you feel that it’s ok for us to use artists’ music without asking for permission for educational purpose?  “Fair Use” in legal parlance.

Help DJTechTools Get Our YouTube Account Back

  • Let Ten Walls, and their management know how you feel about this situation
  • Here is their Facebook, Twitter



Technically, demonstrations that include copyrighted music in tutorials are usually “fair use” by the legal standards of today. While a very grey area of IP, there are a few clear guidelines which indicate if use of another persons copyrighted material is fair to use without explicit permission:

  1. Not commercially exploited
  2. Educational in nature
  3. Re-purposed or re-contextualized
  4. Does not hurt the artists ability to commercially exploit their material

Historically DJ TechTools has been pretty relaxed about using copyrighted music in our videos. They are not for sale, and ultimately promote the artists in a positive way. We have never received a single complaint (until now) so it was assumed that sharing great music was a positive thing!

On the other hand, we do understand that music creators like to have some choice over how their music is used and will try to only work with content that comes from friendly places in the future.


Our YouTube channel has over 25 million views to date, with most of them coming from DJs – exactly the kind of people which buy dance music. If there is one place you would want to get your songs, then this is it!

Ultimately we don’t want to promote, or offend artists that don’t want their music used in this context, and would rather focus on supporting those who do! So, if anyone would like us to use your music in our tutorial videos, then please add the following email to your promo list!

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  • samuel agius

    Personally I don’t care what music is being played, that I care is what I learn from the tutorials. If music is being used to teach something to someone for free and educational purpose there is nothing wrong, I don’t see any infringement of copyright, Saying that dj tech tools are promoting the music that is being used. I am a producer, If dj tech tools have used my tracks to teach, I will be the first person to see that tutorial :). Also dj tech tools doing those video tutorials are helping those bedroom dj to improve their skills. Personally I thank Ean Golden for the interesting material and reviews on dj tech tools

  • Aaron V

    I’ve bought plenty of music you’ve featured in your videos (when I can figure out what is being played, some of the older videos it was hard to make out the name on the traktor window) and believe your videos are a prime advertising artists and their management should be begging for. Like some one stated in a comment below, the video would have gotten the same amount of views with or without their song. The song was not the key to the video being successful, it was just along for the ride.

  • Toko-Toko

    I believe that the video is for educational use, so DJTT doesn’t gain any profit from these videos (besides they have sponsors and advertisers for that).

    I think next time when DJTT decide to do a video using copyrighted material. It is better if you ask the artist permission first, so that the person knows how their music is used and where it is used. If they say no there is royalty free music platforms like FREE MUSIC ARCHIVE or FREE PLAY MUSIC for which most of it is creative common or copyright free and what is nice is that you can edit it(after all those artists will appreciate the publicity).

    However what Material Music did to handle the situation messed it up for themselves and for the artist.

  • Skylar Breece

    I agree 100% with steve. I’m not going to go into it anymore then what has already been said here.

    But in all honesty, i’ve been mixing for going on 2 years now, I dont produce my own tracks yet but truthfully thanks to you guys, if i want to start learning how to produce my own music you guys usually have some post that will point me in the right direction.

    You guys are really the reason i’am able to do what i do on my mixs now. I dont have alot of friends in the industry, so alot of my questions got unanswered until i run into someone who is in the business or i find it on here, even before i start looking on youtube. Granted there are times i get frustrated because you guys make it look so easy but overall that just pushes me to make my mixs sound like what i heard on your guys site.

    I have almost gotten all my equipment from DJ Tech Tools an have always had a positive exsperience with the fellow music lover who i end up talking to in your chat support. An even your chat support has helped me numerous of times to ether answer something i cant find anywhere or just to pick there brain a little.
    You guys to me are the best thing for new an old djs an i hope you guys keep up the good work an thank you for all the hints, tricks, an videos you have allowed us to watch to become a better dj overall.

  • DJ Mad Wax

    You guys are a big enough site that of course they’d want a licensing fee. You should have just paid it. Tutorials are tutorials, why use well known tunes when you have a million tiny labels to choose from who would love the exposure? I’m sorry man but you did it to yourselves

  • Mario García

    I only have feelings of hate and no respect for mario bossanov, come on are you oligofrenic or something?

  • TowardsTheCrowdEquipmentAngler

    Play by the rules and such things don’t happen. You violated a rule and don’t show no comprehension. Or do you feel because you’re djtechtools they should bow to you? Just asking (nowadays there are DJ-Blog calling themselves “authority” and such so you never know what “illusion of grandeur” they contain in their ego)…

  • Fuller

    I am sympathetic to both parties here, but it seems like Ten Walls is choosing the “win the battle, lose the war” position. I’m no IP lawyer, and I know that things get legally thorny when you try to define whether something is fair use or not, but it seems reasonable that Ten Walls should have the right to request that the song be taken down. They own the content, they should be able to control whether it is used in a commercial setting.
    While I sympathize with DJTT’s position, I do question whether they have a “right” under fair use to produce a video using someone else’s content because I do see their tutorials as a commercial effort. It doesn’t really matter that you guys aren’t making tons of money, or that the percentage of viewers who decide to buy things after watching videos is incredibly small. The reality is that you drive traffic to the site with them and hope that people end up buying things. I think good evidence of that is shown in the fact that DJTT appears to be most upset by the fact that YT has now blocked their direct links from videos to the site and is asking us to help push Ten Walls to help them fix that…

    So, from my (only in my second year of law school, so pretty uninformed) opinion, it looks like Ten Walls has a pretty good argument that they have the right to do what they have done. YouTube must agree, and I trust that their lawyers have played this game several times already…

    That said, I think Ten Walls’ choice to exercise this right was totally boneheaded. I don’t see how this helps them, in fact it only appears that it’ll hurt them. A good reason to do what they have done is to go against people who are posting their music on YT just as a song. That offender would potentially be robbing them of revenue because someone could choose to listen to the song online on YT instead of purchasing it. The tutorials though… does anyone ever pull up a tutorial just to hear the song that’s used? No. Never. Doesn’t happen. If it did, that person is exactly who Ten Walls wants to see it on a DJTT video because that person is pulling it up to find out what track it is so they CAN buy it, not just to give it a listen.

    I imagine that Ten Walls has probably lost many more customers on this and future releases by taking this position than they ever would have because of DJTT’s posting of the video. Maybe I’m an outlier, but I have a soft spot for the DJTT crew. Everyone needs to put food on the table, but I’ve always had the impression that DJTT is run by good people who are about the music and the scene more than the money.

    As a musician, surrounded by struggling musicians, I do what I can to support people who are pursuing their artistic passions. I totally understand that Ten Walls is trying to put food on their table too, and that they perceive this as a threat. They’d probably benefit from a rethinking of what’s in their best interests here though.

    DJTT should probably get permission to use tracks if they’re going to be using them in videos. I’m guessing that had they asked about using this prior to it being posted and the song getting popular, it may not have ever been an issue. If asking up front is too cumbersome there should be prominent acknowledgement of what tracks are used and if possible a link to where you can buy them.

    Ten Walls should recognize that by supporting the DJ community, DJTT is helping to build a customer base for them, and by using their music in videos DJTT is driving those customers towards them.

  • Mr. V

    Dear Ean,
    I own SOLE channel Music & Muzik 4 Tomorrow and if DJ Techtools needs to license any of my music I HAVE NO ISSUE WHATSOEVER and would not require any such fee as I believe in the benefit of promotion.
    You can find my entire catalog on both Beatport & and you can choose any track or song on either one of the labels.

    Please continue to make tutorials as I not only find them helpful, I also find them educational as well and the time and effort your team puts in them should not be overlooked.

    You can contact my label or myself direct on my website: and use the email in the contact section.

    Mr. V.

  • FRE3 $P!N

    Wow this is dumb you guys do nothing but help us and the artists I’ve bout lots of songs that you have had in your vids and supported artists you’ve had with how I play seems like someone has there panties in a knot as some body who has made edm I love to here my music in some bodys mix so I dont know what the problem is I bout the song ill play it how I want! !!!

  • I DJ for living and used to live from my own production, too, so I think I’ve seen this problematic from both points of view. My answers to your questions:

    “Do you discover new tracks through our videos?”

    – No, I don’t. It’s not because I wouldn’t pay attention to what tracks are played, but I just happen to play different music.

    “Do the tutorials inspire you to then purchase the music?”

    – Obviously, they don’t.

    “Do you feel that it’s ok for us to use artists’ music without asking for permission for educational purpose? “Fair Use” in legal parlance.”

    – No, I don’t feel that it’s OK for you to use artists music without permission. No matter, if it’s in compliance with “Fair Use” or for educational purposes. I think, that it should be common sense to ask for permission to use someone else’s property.

    In real life world, when I DJ using other artists’ tracks (which I bought), these permissions are handled by the venues where I play, by paying their commission fees to the societies who represent artists and publishers in their respective countries.

    In the virtual world, this commission collection is not so centralized and so every artist, management, label has to see to its property for themselves or through their legal partners. In the end, this makes the process of clearing these permissions more time consuming for people who would like to use this material. This leads to the common misconceptions about what you pay for when you buy music and what are your rights.

    The simple solution to this is to inform yourselves with your countries artists’ and publishers’ society.
    Always ask for permission to use any material (it’s polite) and in the end prevents the others to take down YOUR content because they are not willing you to use their tracks for free.
    As you proposed, let people send you their promos, but then always remember to clear the permissions before you use even that kind of material.
    You could establish a community sourced pool of tracks (the artists/labels could submit their tracks for your use). In the process of submitting a track, they would have to agree with you using their tracks.

  • Spencer

    I make music for a living and people often upload my music without permission, but I have watched a lot of your videos so I understand both sides. Before my group was able to monetize our own music on Youtube we were faced with the challenge of letting people use our music and listen for free or taking their videos down. We generally opted for the first option, but while people watching the videos were “exposed” to our music, they were also not “buying” our music. We now are able to monetize videos that use our songs and our fans are free to post them.
    One question for you, if when you uploaded the video you got a message that the song had been recognized by Youtube’s copyright protection and that ads would appear on your video, would you have changed the song?

    I think the solution for DJTT is one or more of the following:
    1. Create a pool of music from independent artists that see the value in you using their music
    2. Make some relationships with labels that would let you use their music
    3. Take the risk of getting flagged again.

    I think there are many labels out there that if you contact ahead of time would love for you to spotlight their artists. As for independents, there is a very delicate balance between promotion and making a living that we have to manage every day, but just because someone discovers my music through a TV show or commercial doesn’t mean that the network or show didn’t get something out of it too.

  • Dennis Christopher

    Dear DJ Techtools, you can use any of my tunes in exchange for another MIDI Twister!!

  • MFx

    First of all, I think music in the DJT videos will help the artist not hurt the artist.
    Maybee it’s an idea to let young producers donate tracks for use in DJT tutorials.
    Like the “bedroom dj” there are also a lot of good “bedroom producers” that can use
    every bit of exposure offert. In this case you solve the legal discussion about copyrighted material, have new and fresh music and giving an extra platform for young producers to get themselves noticed. Just my 2 cents

  • EurobeatGuy

    Have you considered using Monstercat tracks? They’re generally free and Monstercat’s generally supportive of their artists. (They also permit free use of their tracks for Let’s Players and what have you on YouTube.)

  • Al Hesh Kong

    Artists shouldn’t be worried about money all the time, this life isn’t about money and fame… We should all contribute our works to DJTT, they’ve done more for the community than any “artist” trying to make a quick buck. If you wanna make a quick buck work as a server at a fine dining restaurant or a bartender at some fancy cocktail bar.If the entire music industry goes up in flames, the artists who are in it for the money well be forced out of the community and those of us who just do it for the love of doing it would remain.

    -Hesh Beats

  • Guest

    uhm…am i the only one that thought extrange that the 1º one to comment is against DTT?

  • teknik1200

    Sell out artist uses sell out strong arming. typical.

  • phil

    can i have some knobs for free, if i’ll say my friends where to buy your knobs?

  • Guest

    The song isn’t even that good… Its just a generic, shit house track with a bunch of brass samples. What lame assholes…

  • LongTimeLurker1stTimePoster

    Your notion of Fair Use is pretty lacking – you’re engaging in a GoldieBlox-Lite type of “but our mission should allow us to do this without paying money!” and you’re not going to win with that attitude. You just won’t. Might want to take a deep breath and realize you’re the one who shot the hole in your canoe – not them – you.

    To put it another way, if you think using music in this context is or ‘should be’ Fair Use, then the other side of the coin will be you can’t get mad at me for collecting all the DJTT YouTube video tutorials, editing them together into a usable DVD format, then burning copies to give them out to people. After all, if you claim ‘exposure’ is worth something, then you should be ok with this. I have a feeling you’d argue this example isn’t a good one, but that’s a self-serving position.

    • Stephen Rudolph

      In fairness, the only non-lacking notion of Fair Use would be rendered in a court room. If past court cases are any indication, though, DJ Tech Tools’ usage of the song in this video has a greater likelihood of falling into the realm of fair use than not.

  • I think asking the artist and label, is not a bad thing to do before using their music…
    For me I would think it’s cool if a community like dj-techtools uses my music… but others have different thoughts about this. Another view is how much would the artist benefit from the use of his music in a vid, (cause u see many peopls in youtube comments always ask who’s track is this etc…) probably nothing cause people will just look it up download it for free… maybe 1% would really buy it…
    Just my thoughts having released a couple of releases and they were downloadable before even being released… It’s just Shite !!!

  • kebzer

    Last week we had Soundcloud, now this. Whats next? Serato/Traktor blocking mp3s from our playlists?

    Probably this is a case of drooling over Youtube revenue. This kind of attitude can fire back, usually harder. With your current status within the EDM community, I would suggest you go all the way the opposite:

    Start charging Labels to use their songs in your videos.

    If they don’t wanna pay, use one of your own songs. That way you will once more help the community by forwarding the message to all these web based, vapor-ware, labels. This kind of corporate behavior killed the normal labels, next are the web based.

  • Noisedisturbance

    Okay so before I say anything, I’d like to point out I only have basic knowledge behind licensing due to what I have been learning in my Music Production Degree, and I have not released any original tracks that have been licensed as of yet.

    But I would of thought that show casing someones music on your channel, which mind you is viewed by many, each day. That means that many who enjoy that music will most likely download it and increase the popularity of the artist and label who owns that song. If an agreement had to be met as to how or when that track would be used, it should be discussed not dealt with in the immature way that said label/owners responded. I can understand if they wanted an agreement and fee to be paid because they own copyright to that track but if they are not going to let you sort it out with them and almost imediately take action but getting YouTube to remove that video, it is immature, and not to mention very rude. At least try and solve things before taking legal action, But that’s only my 2 cents.

  • chris

    well, that is an open question, and an democratic process brings more light in.

  • smutek

    I just looked Ten Walls up on RA. He’s got a lot going on, just played Ibiza, Barcelona, Switzerland. Booked for festivals in Leipzig & Amsterdam all next weekend.

    I’d guess that’s pretty good publicity for his own tracks and his label. I wonder if he’s got permission to play all of the other tracks he intends to drop?

    • Toontown

      Public performance royalties are the responsibility of the venue, not the performer. You don’t need permission to play tracks in a live setting, so long as you legally own them.

  • stephen

    I love them I think they are amazing and I love to watch them, ive watched most more than once

  • NKT

    Why don’t you guys just use nothing but Mad Zach tracks? LOL I know I wouldn’t mind one bit…

  • Jon

    As long as you give credit to the artist I’d say it’s fine.

  • Digitalovrload

    As an old dj learning new tricks, I enjoy the videos so I can figure out how to use the technology. I use Traktor Pro and the Midi Fighter 3D.

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  • Oddie O’Phyle

    *shakes head at how stupid this is*… the video would have been just as valid educationally if it was a sample track from maschine. the fact that chris used a track from Material Music doesn’t mean that DJTT will generate more revenue. all this shows me is that i will run into problems when playing this labels music… the boycott of a mediocre record label won’t hurt my crate.

  • B.

    I would have never known who Ten Walls if it wasn’t for you using their material in your tutorial. It provided positive exposure. The tutorial video wasn’t being sold or used to gain a profit. Its beyond ridiculous they would be offended and file a claim. This simply causes a negative emotion towards them now. I hope the account gets restored back to normal.

  • aw81

    I can’t even count how many YouTube comments start with: song title please?
    I understand the copyright argument etc but the label must see that exposure like this is good exposure?!
    People will buy the tracks, I have found music through YouTube vids and purchased them after.
    It’s also used in context, using a song in a tutorial is totally different to just putting a song as backing to some compilation or whatever.
    I bet the label rescinds the takedown notice after this…

  • For YT vids (if i was to make one) i think i would prefer to use creative commons licensed material, at least then i would already have permission.

    I honestly don’t understand why artists would automatically want the videos taken down. Why does the artist not choose to put ads on it instead or contact the people who upload the vid and come to some agreement?

    Automatic takedowns are not helpful to either party.

    • smutek

      Because they probably saw a chance to get a bunch of money, which is probably more important to them than the music or the scene.

  • Guest

    You are the ones at fault here.

    Anyone who thinks they are above the law, especially in business terms, really irritates me. If someone, involved in the music industry, is naive enough to use copyrighted music without first gaining permission, within a businesses related youtube channel, is in serious need of a re-education.

    How much money does djtechtools as a business earn annually? Do you wish to share this information? Pay the licensing fee and shut up! Stop trying to demonize an artist/ their management, when you are clearly the one who has broken the rules. Nobody would accept you walking into a shop and eating part of an apple without paying for it, so why should an artist accept you pilfering part of their music to your own end?

    “Educational in nature”, maybe, but where can I buy that midifighter and special Z2 used in the video from, hmmm, only from the djtechtools shop perhaps? I saw no reference/ link/ credit in the tutorial to the musicians website/ track. It’s about time you get pulled up on this, and I hope the inconvenience of having to set up and upload to a new youtube channel reinforces the need to respect other IP.

    • Oddie O’Phyle

      it’s not a “special” Z2, it’s a normal one with a vinyl cover from 12″ skinz, a product not even sold on this site.

    • GWRX

      The track is question is a rip off of Gregor Tresher’s “A Thousand Nights.”

      Should Ten Walls maybe consider paying him before demanding others pay him for use of “his” song?

    • Stephen Rudolph

      I’m sure you regularly disrespect others’ IP too by not following the licensing terms of each track you purchase to an exact T. And think of just how far in the past electronic music would be stuck if not for the wanton violation of copyright law. Each time you load a track into your software of choice and pull a sample from it, chop it up, warp it, loop it, whatever it…you’re probably violating the license you agreed to follow when purchasing said track, if you actually purchased it.

      • i’m happy to see a few people actually talking some sense here… copyright law is quite black and white…and most of the planet is living in a grey area! artists more so than others 🙂

  • Scott Frost

    Hi guys.

    i think what you should do is pick a label – or contact a few. And say look, we do tutorials on dj gear, we would like to use some of your music in the tutorial In return, we will put links to iTunes or beatport or whatever in the video and on our site.

    Worst case, use loops or stuff that’s in public domain.

    Maybe if you get the right contacts, you could become the next beatport !

    • CUSP

      I totally agree. If you can’t find something you like. Make something.

  • I’m assuming DJTT profit from their Youtube Channel, and videos; I think it’s only fair to pay for the hard work someone has put into a song… It’s the amount of money that is requested that is either fair or unfair, not whether or not you have to pay. IMO

    Pay ya bills Ean. 😛

  • TCMuc

    DJ Techtools is a commercial website. You have a web-shop and there’s ads on the pages, which means you’re making money from this. Not directly from the tutorials, but those tutorials create attention for your site, thus increasing traffic (which means increased ad revenue) and bringing potential shop-customers to the page.
    So imho the “not commercially exploited” criterium does not apply for DJ Techtools.

    And besides, regardless wether you HAVE TO pay for the music or not – choosing not to do so because you claim you’re generating interest in the artist is exactly the same as shady promoters asking DJs to play for free because “it’s great promotion”: a really, really lame move.

    • Per Jakobsen

      How many aspiring and established DJ’s would not do something for free, provided the promotional value was rewarding enough.
      How many record labels do you think actually Pay to get their music featured ex on radio. DJTT might have tried to muscle out the wrong people. But downing a full youtube channel is a little harsh. Also as i intrepid here is that DJTT was ready to make some kind of reimbursement, it was just the size of the reimbursement that was not agreed upon

  • Bridge2Brain

    I think even if the videos help to promote artists, you should ask them for permision and if you dont want to pay anything for it, go and ask the next artist. You even could ask a few at the same time and choose after. If you would ask me for permision to use any of my tracks i would definitively say yes but i would be mad if you just take it and do a video out of it without asking. Fair use – yes but asking for permision – even bigger YES.

  • Per Jakobsen

    my own productions is wayyy cooler than that boring track any way. If i played that track where i DJ i would end up with rotten plantain thrown on my mixer (LMAO)

  • René via ‘Allo ‘Allo

    Never heard of the track, and as a result I’ll find it and listen, and if I like it, I’ll buy it. So actually the refusal for you to use the music, in the tutorial, has given the artists some free publicity and a possible purchase….

  • poltergeist

    This is ridiculous… I have always not only enjoyed having appropriate music in the DJTT but I have often bought the music featured in the tutorial videos as I feel like DJTT promotes and plays out the sort of music professional DJs use.

    Boso need to undo this.

  • I, like many others that have commented below, have discovered and then bought new music through DJ Tech Tools videos, including TenWalls music. To me this is a real shame, for the artists its basically free promotion.

  • vslayer

    this is ridiculous, any promo is good promo, this kind of things only sinks the music…

  • Robert Wulfman

    Often I like the music in your videos but then I don’t usually care enough to track it down, however if you had a pop-up in the corner of the video with a link to the track on beatport I’d probably be much more inclined to check it out

  • User that got erased

    what happened to my comment I shared of how you guys basically sell stuff on the website and your youtubes are kind of like promotions steering the viewer back here to buy stuff if they would like to?

  • Yes, I do discover new tracks.
    Yes, as long as I fall in love with the track I’d probably buy it.
    It’s Ok, the only thing that should be present is a notification of using it (not a permission) and of course credits is a MUST at least. I’m a Producer/Dj, and I just don’t get how is it bad that other people around the globe use our music and promote it in educational videos or tutorials or whatever. Someone said here in one of the post that you use your tutorials for marketing purposes, and you know what? that’s ok!
    If I play somewhere with my gear or even better (let’s put it simple) using chroma cables which I bought with a coupon (and probably cost me nothing), should I hide the brand on my gear? should I change the cables? should I put a sock on my chroma caps just because I haven’t ask DJTT if I could show all my stuff. Or even worst because I want DJTT or whatever the store I bought my stuff is, to pay me if in a their name or brands I use appear in a video of me playing or even wrong a picture of my last gig? No, Of course NOT! Right?
    So no, It doesn’t hurt any artist or label.
    I’m with you guys, and I know that tons of Producers & Dj’s who visit DJTT support you aswell.

  • killmedj

    Please feel free to use ANY of my tracks in your instructional videos!
    God only knows I could do with the exposure!! =)

    • Per Jakobsen

      LIKE 🙂

    • kebzer

      Damn right! Count me in too.

  • Toontown

    I think they got butthurt so they took their ball and went home. They weren’t opposed to the free publicity, in fact I’m sure they liked it. They figured you had money so they tried to cash in on a payday. You said no, so they said no.

    If you willingly put free intellectual property out on the internet, it’s pretty much public domain these days. At the very least you credit the artist and link to their Soundcloud. I’d be thrilled if one of my tracks got used in a DJTT video, but that’s just me.

    • smutek

      “If you willingly put free intellectual property out on the internet, it’s pretty much public domain these days”

      No, actually it’s not – hence this entire debacle.

      • Toontown

        You’re right. I knew that was hyperbolic when I wrote it, and I’m aware that “public domain” is a specific definition of a type of intellectual property.

  • Cupcake

    Its fair use, it helps, they need to stop being butt hurt about money and get over it. They are making enough of it as it is.

  • Ironlion7777

    And lets be clear: the argument that views = revenue is weak. If the song wasnt on the tutorial video, guess what: PPL WOULD STILL WATCH THE VIDEO BECAUSE ITS A TUTORIAL-NOT A MUSIC VIDEO.

  • Ironlion7777

    Lame. Lame. Lame. Lame.

    All this did was make me NEVER want to play “Walking With Elephants” in my sets. I dont support artists, management, or labels who think a little website like djtechtools is taking away a significant amount of revenue from the artist.

    If anything, it makes the record label look broke and cheap. :

  • raycotek

    To answer your questions…
    * Not personally but I think it’s good exposure for artists.
    * Not so far but I often go check them further on Soundcloud, YouTube or wherever.
    * Yes but I think it could be argued that this video doesn’t fall into that category.

    Regular readers know how devoted this site is to educating, enlightening and inspiring DJs, but the artist/label probably just sees it as a commercial for DJTT, Native Instruments (and MOJAXX!). Personally I don’t buy the music from the vids, but I do buy the gear. I guess they feel they’re helping to sell Z2s and Chroma Caps so they’re owed something, and even though it’s terrible PR, I do think it’s their right to make the call.

    Shame they won’t even discuss it any more ‘though. That’s even worse PR for them, although to be fair they probably didn’t know YouTube would be so vindictive. If God is in fact a DJ then maybe this story will blow up and you’ll get more traffic through the site than if YouTube hadn’t been such jerks.

  • Talon Michael Steinhauer

    I agree with Steve’s post here. DJ Tech Tools does technically profit from an artists music being used in a tutorial video. It does so by gaining additional followers and page views. This is indirect profit however and does not mean that those viewers will eventually spend $ at DJTT store.

    This is indifferent to a label though. They just want the money for the artist work they OWN. The laws regarding DRM are intentionally vague for a reason.

    DJTT even did a blog about how to avoid this kind of thing from happening a while ago!

    I support DJTT in this issue because I believe the label is being unnecessarily harsh. Especially when DJTT said they were willing to negotiate. I reposted this on my FB and asked the artist to contact his label/ management about this issue. I hope that with such a supportive community DJTT can come out ahead of this issue and maybe convince a label or two that artists are not against DRM but against unnecessarily harsh punishment of those who are in violation of it.

    I’d love to hear back from DJTT about how they feel too. We all have these opinions about how they feel based on the articles tone but I’d like to hear more.


  • spintechdj

    There is too much music out there to not let your song be chosen for a video. If you say ‘No’ someone one else that has a marketing campaign and EP ready will say ‘Yes’.

    Artists need to start selling show tickets and merch and the music in the videos is what gets your audience started on something… ‘you want to be starting something’.

    Dj’s are always listening to something. If I watch a video without music, you know what I do …I turn on some other promo I’ve been meaning to listen to.

    Half of the music I listen to now I did not find on my own, it was presented to me through other promotional means.

    DJs are always listening. If your music isn’t on people won’t hear it …sell shows and merch. Get over yourself and get out of the way of the success of your music.

    Art, and music specifically, is not in the creation it is in the sharing.

  • Earnest

    Unfortunately, the fair use doctrine is a defense, not a pass. It’s only effective in a court, and you’ll need a good lawyer to push it for you. In the meantime, you end up having to take down the “offending” content. It’s not ideal at all, but that’s what we’ve got these days.

    The alternative is using tracks that are independently produced or made otherwise available for your use (public domain, creative commons, et cetera). These tracks are likely less recognizable, and the tutor is less likely to be familiar with them, and familiarity, of course, is a key factor in successful manipulation of a song. It will make hunting for content harder, but the likelihood that you will have to pull a tutorial down after the fact decreases significantly.

    I know that I’ve been turned on to tracks by hearing them in your tutorials, so in my mind it’s a loss for the artists if you can’t use their music, but I think it’s a bigger loss for the community if a rights holder makes you pull content.

    In any case, thanks for all your hard work. You keep making videos, and I’ll keep watching them.

  • Dean Zulueta

    I have been seeing people suggest a DJTT community pool of tracks. I really like that idea. Gets the community involved and keeps DJTT in the clear with any legal disputes.

    With that idea, I think it would be cool if people could suggest tracks that they hear. What is in my head is someone suggests a guy they follow on Soundcloud, who is probably not super well known, a DJTT staff member reaches out and secures the track. Then other people are brought into the DJTT community and new music can be discovered.

  • x

    speaking of copyright, here’s a new article that came out about a list of artists that don’t want you to remix any of their songs, i think the dj remix mixtape is coming to an end…

  • BBD

    I guess to look at it form the business side, which both you and any music artist you are using indeed are, then you are gaining something by using their music on your website and video’s by way of publicity/promotion since you do in fact sell products then I can see music artist objection to your use.

  • PhlipPhlop

    If i hear a track on an tutorial, and like it, i wanna hear it more often, or play it in a DJ set.
    Am i going to play the tutorial again and again to hear this track? NO,
    because the track goes from loud to qiet to stop to play, also most of
    the time someone is speaking over it.
    So if i hear a track on a tutorial, and like it, i gonna BUY it!

  • Stephen Rudolph

    I would not even know who Ten Walls was if not for this article. I think music should be free.

  • x

    just have a DJTT staff member create a track in ableton and use that, no more copyright mama drama

  • x

    we learned our lesson…from now on just use m.c. hammer “u can’t touch this” for demonstrations

  • RG

    Just host the videos in your own site and create a feeder video on YouTube directing them to it… Simples.

  • bob rawk

    this is classic, music has no value attitude. djtt videos are perhaps “educational” but twice as much promotional. no one, NO ONE, wants to pay a musician. and thats just the way of the modern world. if you’re using it and it isn’t yours, you owe someone something. if you need tracks for use, you need a budget for those things. if not, make your own!

  • Eric

    Any airplay is good for an artist. The more exposure the better.

  • When you hear music in our tutorial videos, does it make you want to purchase those songs?
    It definitely makes me want to check the artists’ Soundcloud/Spotify link.

    Do you discover new tracks through our videos?
    Yes, everyday.

    Do you feel that it’s ok for us to use artist’s music
    without asking for permission for educational purpose? “Fair Use” in
    legal parlance.
    No, a quick email to the artist goes a long way. Should they suck up money from you for promoting their song? No.

  • Casey Kennedy

    To answer these questions:

    Do you discover new tracks through our videos?
    Do the tutorials inspire you to then purchase the music?
    Do you feel that it’s ok for us to use artists’ music without asking for permission for educational purpose? “Fair Use” in legal parlance.


    Using these artist’s music absolutely showcases them in a positive way and inspires myself, and I’m sure every other subscriber to this website to either listen to and / or purchase the tracks.

  • Phil Worrell

    Pointless exercise on behalf of the record companies just showing they have no clue as usual. There are far worse ways of breaking copyright and certainly they should have bigger fish to fry than those DJ’s who play and promote the music.

  • Awesomer

    The sum total of this experience from my perspective is that I now have a slightly negative impression of Ten Walls and am slightly less likely to DJ his tracks. Will he also serve me with a Soundcloud cease and desist if I include one of his tracks on a DJ mix?

    While DJ Techtools has a commercial purpose which make it more grey than clearly non-commercial fair use, I struggle to understand the harm to Ten Walls… are people going to this demo video to listen to… someone.. talking… over.. the track? Huh?

    !!! AWESOMER !!!

  • similian

    I have to go with Ten Walls.
    The fact that their song was so succesfull in beatport and other stores means that actually you are using their already proved market succesfull song to promote your video almost freely. ($2,50/n of plays really makes the investment almost 0)
    The fact that you are generating revenue from the videos with links to the store, regular in video comments that tell you about the equipment you can buy in your store. Makes their clame legitimate to my point of view.
    You are a business, you generate value, but for this you need raw materials and these raw materials have to be bought in order for you to use them.
    A song is in a weird domain on what kind of good it stand on.
    Physical matter decays, breaks and gets used up in the process of generating value, therefore it must be replaced.
    However a song can be copied infinitely, it is not used up in the process, it always accesible, it doest break, once you have the file you can have the number of files you want scattered in all the computers you own. you can duplicate without it being consumed in the process of generating value. It is an infinitely durable good with a scrap price.
    This is why royalties exist.
    So by your initial $2,50 investment you did on a new beatport song, if the amount of plays on your video is over 25k, your average cost on this particular raw material is just $0,0001 and it will only keep getting smaller as the song is always available and is not being used up or consumed.
    This then translates to each unit of anything you sell. The gap between the cost this song added to your overall marketing cost and the generated value it gives will keep getting bigger and bigger.

    So wrapping things up. you are using buying an infinite durable good for a scrap price and profiting from this weird kind of economic good music is.
    It’s not easy to understand this, but basically, you are using someone else’s intelectual knowledge and time for free without his/her permission.

    Some may argue DJ’s also do this, however a nightclub that is in rule theoretically pays a royalty fee from profiting from other people music

    Don’t get me wrong, I love the site, I have learnt a lot from this website, the forum and the community. I really appreciate what you do for the music fans and lovers like me!
    I write this from my point of view, and hope that everything resolves for the best 🙂

  • it might be good for the artist, but not good for the label… i think DJTT is not completely only a educational website i don’t thing that is a issue 😀 but is it really fair use?… in the future just get the rights before posting and find music from this community…. and make a new youtube account 😉 Cheers and good luck… and oh yeah get a lawyer

  • Stephen Gagnon

    In the future unfortunately it just means you need to clear tracks before posting video. Since there tends to be product placement of items you sell even if its not intentional it dilutes the defense of fair use. I definitely will be boycotting Ten Walls, Material Music and Needwant Limited based on their approach until this get resolved, and you get your linking privileges back on YouTube.

  • Sandeep Kumar

    just do things 100% legal, we love the videos and it sucks that WE (the audience) have to suffer because some label got greedy

    • Volker

      there is no 100% legal as long as there’s a need for lawyers and courts 😉

  • dj jsn

    i’m sure ol’ dirty bastard is ok with DJTT using his song “got your money” for a demonstration lol

  • Griff

    I bought a Krewella track you used in ‘mixing on a stage’ to work out how you did the effects during the mix. Not the sort of tune i would normally have gone for. So they got a sale. Its not as if it was used in an advert for djtt or could have been used as entertainment, except in a bit of a nerdy way. A bad example of biting one the key parts of the dance music process, a bit Soundcloud. A couple of alternatives; put an APB out for artists and labels who don’t care about being used in a constructive manner and/or get the djtt ableton (or other daw of your choice) people to knock up tracks for use in the videos. It always amazes me the lengths suits will go for a few pennies.

  • Volker

    When you hear music in our tutorial videos, does it make you want to purchase those songs?
    => Yes

    Do you discover new tracks through our videos?
    => Yes, definitely!

    Do you feel that it’s ok for us to use artist’s music
    without asking for permission for educational purpose? “Fair Use” in
    legal parlance.
    => It feels ok for me, but that’s not the point I guess.

    To avoid this in the future, here’s the corresponding blacklist:

    • Dan White

      Note that Ten Walls, and similar non-pop/major labels are not reflected on this list.

      • Volker

        I reached out to Morgan to get more intel on this. WIll report back here.

      • Volker

        update: the site has a new version. You can now submit new entries.

  • Sin Sentido Comun

    DJTT: This is all messed up, you state that it’s fair use when ”
    Not commercially exploited” but in the end the videos are there not only for educational ends, they are aprt of the whole djtt bussiness model and I shouldnt be fair use. Specially after your last paragraph in this article: “Our youtube channel has over 25 million views to date, with most of them coming from dj’s – exactly the kind of people which buy dance music. If there is one place you would want to get your songs then this is it! Ultimately we don’t want to promote, or offend artists don’t like our work – and instead focus on supporting those who do! So, if you or your friends own labels and would like us to use your music in our tutorial videos then please add the following email to your promo list!” that is pure marketing.
    The way to go is to have permission from artists and labels.

    • rayrex

      Marketing in what sense?

      It doesn’t matter if DJTT is making money / traffic from their videos – its the fact that whatever song they use doesn’t have any sort of financial significance to them. They could have used “Baby Got Back” or “Funk Phenomenon” and that wouldn’t have made them an extra dollar that they weren’t already going to make.

      I.E., it’s fair use, bub.

      – rayrex

  • parris

    So sad that it’s come done to this……. DJ Tech Tools without a doubt has intruded many many new tracks to me & many of us……. They are picking a fight with the good guys….

  • DC

    I’ve never listened this guy, and certainly won’t be in the future. Going forward, pick cooler artists to be involved with your tutorial videos. Stay away from shitty Lithuanian DJ’s who hurt the community.

  • Marco Hooghuis

    I know I’m going to take a beating for this, but I’m actually with TenWalls on this one.
    If these videos were made by hobbyists not making a dime from them I’d say it’s no problem. But you (you being DJ TechTools) are using the videos not only as an education tool and you are not doing this as a hobby. You are creating revenue using the videos by directing viewers to your site and, ultimately, your store. Note that there is nothing wrong with this and you are doing a good job at it. So ultimately you are making money by using tracks by others. This requires royalties, it’s that simple.

    You can circumvent this by either asking the artists for permission or making a deal with a label, store, record pool, etc. Ellaskins on youtube did the same thing, he made a deal with CD Pool to provide tracks he could use in his videos and he is friends with a few producers who allow him to use their tracks. You could even ask your community for tracks to use, which would be legal as well.

    • Volker

      I’m with you on the right for TenWalls – more correctly material music –
      to ask for some compensation. The problem is that after failed
      negotiation they called on youtube which then creates a much bigger
      impact on djtt.

      Kinda like the medium sized bully on the playground who calls his big brother after you stood up against him….

  • Mark Sironi

    In today’s permission based culture (thanks DMCA!) they don’t need to be legally correct to censor any material using their music (for that matter they could just as easily claim copyright when they don’t actually have it but that is another story). I think you have a strong case for fair use here but since the DMCA is a “presumed guilty until proved innocent” system pragmatically it’s not cost effective to fight a fair use claim.

    However, Material Music has made it crystal clear that they do not wish to have their tracks promoted, so I would be inclined to grant their request and refuse to promote/play their tracks at all. If it were me I’d also put a link on the main page “Labels we refuse to do business with and why” and document this. Sadly they are within their rights to abuse the DMCA but you are also within your rights to call them out for it.

  • Feel

    Go on Vimeo, it’s really more flexible about music 😉

  • darrin bisson

    I’m only surprised this didn’t happen sooner. I hate to bring it up but the old adage of assuming came up here (it’s used right in the article). As one reader commented – there are far more than just a few perks for the artist by you making these videos. I’ve never looked it up – but aside from traffic to your site, do you also make money for videos with a high number of views? Lastly, I want to say I found your site via Skratchworx years ago – not via youtube – and am amazed at what you guys have built djtt into. Get creative with a solution.
    Just had an idea as I’m typing – ask for submission of original content by your readers! I’m sure they’d love traffic to their soundcloud (or whatever service they use). Otherwise use those royalty free loops from Traktor – NI has been pretty good to you over the years.

  • jeremysexton

    I don’t think it necessarily hurts or helps the artist. Maybe a couple folks will buy a track they heard in the video, but probably not many.

    It does seem like the way the tracks are used are absolutely fair use, though.

  • Pingback: Does Music In DJ TechTool’s video’s help or hurt Artists? | NUTesla | The Informant()

  • Saleem Razvi

    In 2008, a district court ruled that prior to requesting a takedown notice, a copyright owner must consider the likelihood of a claim of fair use. In that case, Universal Music issued a takedown notice for a video of a child dancing to the song, “Let’s Go Crazy,” by Prince. The owner of the video claimed that since Universal didn’t consider the issue of fair use, Universal could have not had a “good faith belief” they were entitled to a takedown. Faced with this novel issue a district court agreed that the failure to consider fair use when sending a DMCA notice could give rise to a claim of failing to act in good faith. (Lenz v. Universal Music Corp., 572 F. Supp 2d 1150 (N.D. Cal. 2008). – Hope this helps – from guest writer Saleem Razvi (DJ/Producer/Attorney)

  • Jay Dizzle

    I dont pay attention to The music i The videos. It’s the tutorial that’s relevant & what I’m interested in… So far I have not heard a song I would like. But if one day a tutorial video includes a song that gets my attention. Then I would buy it. So in that way I think it’s only positive for the artist/label.

  • DJ JSN


  • Steve

    Before I start, this is coming from someone who has never released or licensed an original track.

    I don’t know how much money you guys make at DJ TechTools, but let’s be real here, the tutorial videos are amazing, but they’re not just here as a public, educational service. They generate traffic to the site, and as a result, direct people to the store. The videos are at best a main revenue generator, and at worst, your prime piece of marketing material. It’s not purely educational. I’m not sure I would have ever visited this site if I didn’t come across one of the videos. And tbh, I’ve never purchased music that was showcased in a video on here. That’s just part of the reason I can’t buy into the idea of “fair use” in this context.

    Let’s get down to brass tacks: You can say any publicity is good publicity only up until we’ve destroyed all possible revenue streams. If I give someone free publicity by showcasing their song without paying a licensing fee, so that people can go get a free download of their track, and then just might be inclined to go see a free show where they’re performing, when do they actually make a living? That’s only a slight exaggeration of the state of music these days. It’s like the underpants gnomes South Park episode. Free Publicity –> ? –> Profit!

    Licensing is one of the last bastions of hope that musicians/labels have left to monetize music. If you keep giving stuff away just for publicity’s sake, it devalues your art and everyone else’s as a result, IMO.

    If you use someone’s material, and they ask for it, you should pay a reasonable licensing fee. It should be up to whoever owns the song’s rights to decide if being included in one of your videos for free is worth it to them. And it’s up to you guys to decide if you want to pay the fee or just take it down. I’m sure artists/labels would be open to negotiation or even some sort of partnership.

    Granted, it’s a reality that if a label is involved, most of this money goes straight to them, but if we keep undermining the revenue streams, there are consequences for everyone. Independent artists lose money that they rightfully deserve and labels have less incentive to give artists reasonable deals. You have to play the game or it hurts everyone. Labels are demonized a bit, and definitely for good reason, but there are tons of small labels out there who are scrounging for a dollar just as much any of us are, and these licensing fees could mean the difference between getting the rent in on time or not.

    I guess at a base level, my point is that this is up to the rights owners to decide the value of their work. Not the other way around. Some people will let you use it for free, some will not. I don’t think it’s a good look to take up arms against the latter. Just don’t ever use their music again, and they can decide if it was worth it.

    • Guest

      There is too much music out there to not let your song be chosen for a video. If you say ‘No’ someone one else that has a marketing campaign and EP ready will say ‘Yes’.

      Artists need to start selling show tickets and merch and the music in the videos is what gets your audience started on something… ‘you want to be starting something’.

      Dj’s are always listening to something. If I watch a video without music, you know what I do …I turn on some music.

      Half of the music I listen to now I did not find on my own, it was presented to me through other promotional means.

      DJs are always listening. If your music isn’t on people won’t hear it …sell shows and merch. Get over yourself and get out of the way of the success of your music.

      Art, and music specifically, is not in the creation it is in the sharing.

      • Music used to be distributed in the form of sheet music or written notation. A “hit” song would sell millions of copies of sheet music – and then people all around the world would play that song on pianos, violins or whatever instrument they could.

        Each replay of the song would increase it’s popularity and drive sales of more sheet music. No one would ever dream of trying to collect money for each time the song was played.

        To me, that seems like a better business model than trying to protect and control the music through intellectual property claims.

    • Pierre

      i myself can follow the statement of steve…
      i’m also think this is not only for education, it’s one an important part of marketing material…i remember in the past where the first “projects” with the vci-100 started…the good old days…until now? where do you stay? between supporting giants like NI for example

      1. I don’t discover new traxx from your site/videos
      2. NO!
      3. It doesn’t hurt to ask! think about the small indie labels…

      kind regards

      ps: this isn’t a small site…it’s a .com

    • Guest

      couldn’t have said it better than that. specially with the last paragraph.

    • Rayrex

      You gotta look at the damage though, Steve.

      It’s cool if they want money – they could have just asked DJTT. But to pull the plug on their videos like that? That’s a bit of a heavy handed bitch slap.

      Times change, and you can’t make nearly as much money with music as you used to before – but that’s besides the point. If they had sand in their vaginas about their music being played (but why? DJTT isnt making money or benefitting first hand by using their song specifically), they could have just asked DJTT to take it down.

      Also, I didn’t get your claim about fair use. If DJTT’s videos point to the site, that’s great and all – but whether they used this particular artist’s song or “Welcome Back Kotter’s” theme song – it makes no difference. DJTT isn’t giving their song away, and if a viewer likes the song, chances are they will look it up.

      So afaik, this is still “fair use” and its in favor for the artist to have DJTT use the song. Exposure and all that.

      – rayrex

    • Our mission has always been: Provide people with free value without expecting anything in return, build a relationship and eventually those people may decide to support the site in some way. It’s a gamble – but one that has paid off at times. Youtube is not a marketing channel, but the best place to host our free tutorial videos.

      We could choose to place ads on those videos (which would be direct monetization) but have always decided against it to maintain the quality of experience.

      The idea that we are making money off the youtube videos just does not hold a lot of weight, both in fact, and correlation evidence.

      The % of visitors on the blog that purchase products is very, very low. We are talking way lower than .5%. The percentage of people that watch a youtube video and click and purchase anything is even lower (very few do). So the actual % of attributable sales from youtube videos is negligible.

      One commentator made a VERY good point: “the tutorial would have been the exact same with or without that track” same number of views, same end result. We are extracting no real value from the artist in any way, just giving them more air time and name recognition.

      There are dozens of videos on youtube today that play the song in it’s full context without permission (they also show ads and are most assuredly not fair use). Why was Dj TechTools a target? Because their management incorrectly assumed that we have money, and would just pay.

      This is not about supporting artists. It’s about cashing in on a hit without any consideration for a long term view or the value provided by our content. It’s shortsighted, and negatively effects all parties.

      • Nathan

        “One commentator made a VERY good point: “the tutorial would have been the exact same with or without that track” same number of views, same end result. We are extracting no real value from the artist in any way, just giving them more air time and name recognition.”

        <– Then choose music to which you have the rights. Seems pretty easy. Unless this statement isn't true.

    • kebzer

      Your approach is coming straight from the ’90s. Correct but outdated.

      These days, ‘artists’ can only make money from live gigs, not by selling music. Having your songs featured in various places maximizes your chance to get booked at some club. Asking for royalties from a tutorial video is pointless. I could only imagine some random dude in his middle ’50s having such an idea or some super big name with possible YT views in the range of millions.

      With this move, these guys succeeded in one thing and only: banning themselves from any tutorial that will come in the future, from any possible side.

      How about that outcome? Do you still believe that it was in these artists’ best interest to ask for royalties, get declined and then demand from YT to take down the video? Do you still believe that this negativity will help them in their music career?

      In response to the decline from DJTT, they could simply request their songs not to be used again by DJTT. Instead, they went all corporate and took down the video. Well done. They can enjoy now that rock under which their name will live from now on.

    • Chris

      “If you keep giving stuff away just for publicity’s sake, it devalues your art and everyone else’s as a result, IMO.”
      Depending on your usage of the word “devalue” I strongly disagree with this point. while this is true from a strictly financial standpoint – the free exchange of anything only proves to strengthen the bonds between those participating in the exchange and the community for which they are involved. Art itself is not dependant on any economic system or its profit restrictions. Just like most issues plaguing our world presently, the problem for which this article was written can be directly attributed to the profit motive. As a result of the lack of consideration shown by the artist or label which owns them in this case, one of the most important reasources for djs IMO has been partially shut down. From my standing it seems the devaluation actually is a result of greed and ill consideration bread from fundamental economic principles.

  • lanceblaise

    I think it can only help… its exposure. I own labels and I am a producer and I would be cool with any of the music I create or release to be used as long as there is some credit given at the end of the video…

  • DJ JSN

    HELL YES DJTT SHOULD BE ABLE TO USE OTHER ARTISTS MUSIC FOR INSTRUCTIONAL PURPOSES! In the real world dj environment most djs mix other artists music! Thats what the traditional dj job. Maybe thats one reason why many djs are becoming producers now so they can create their own music and don’t have to deal with record companies or other artists copyright bullshit. I also think thats why there are dj controllerists performers who perform their own music and don’t play other artists music.

  • Eric

    I honestly think that people saw the video for the tutorial and not the track used in the video. If the same tutorial was done with another track, I’m confident that it would have had absolutely no impact on the viewership.

    I honestly hope this was a twisted move initiated by the management and not the artists (Ten Walls) themselves. Such a narrow minded approach doesn’t
    seem like it can come from artists who are so talented.

  • Joseph Wilk

    It’s very disappointing that they aren’t willing to be flexible enough to reach an agreement to keep the video up for the benefit of the greater deejay and music-making community, and I’ll definitely be letting them know. I have discovered a track or two that I wouldn’t have otherwise (strangely enough, not because I’m into the track on its own but because I think the track works very well in the contexts that the tutorials showcase), but it’s not often. I don’t really watch the videos for specific songs at all, really, but for the techniques presented.

    That said, I think it would be a good-faith policy to request permission beforehand or focus on highlighting Creative Commons music. It would probably be a mutually beneficial situation for DJ Techtools in the long run because featured artists would probably promote the video to their audience and DJ Techtools could highlight tracks that celebrate sharing and community-building over intellectual property rights.

    I think that you satisfy some requirements of Fair Use and are far more tenuous in others. For instance, I could argue that you easily satisfy:

    * Educational in nature – This goes without saying.

    * Re-purposed or re contextualized – Tracks are often mixed, mashed, and mangled as part of the tutorial. The focus is rarely on listening to the track itself but in the context of highlighting a technique that the track allows you to do.

    * Does not hurt the artists ability to commercially exploit their material – There’s no way for me to satisfy my craving to hear a track from watching these videos. The tracks are stopped and started and stopped again, with talking before, during, and after. It’s not often that more than 16 bars of the tracks are played. A few times I’ve been really into a loop I’ve heard during a mixing tutorial and picked up the track because it inspired me to think about how the track could connect with other tracks in my collection.

    However, I think you have a stumbling block with the following guideline:

    * Not commercially exploited.

    DJ Techtools is ultimately a commercial venture and potentially make money through Youtube ad revenue, site ads, and through selling products in its affiliated store. Producing a video, however helpful and educational it may be, can be argued as ultimately contributing to the greater brand and revenue of DJ Techtools.

    I support DJ Techtools and think it’s great that a labor of love and a nexus of community-building amongst DJ, controllerist, and producer hobbyists can (hopefully) become a profitable enterprise without having sacrificed what made it really helpful to begin with.

    I hope this can be resolved. Best of luck to you, Ean, and all the people who put their creativity and effort into producing the videos that were taken down.

  • Beaubryte

    Airplay never hurts any artist.

    • Marco Hooghuis

      This is not about airplay, this is about making money with somebody else’s property.

      • deejae snafu

        The real point is DJTT could have chosen any track to feature in the tutorial, which in my opinion proves that it was in fact fair use for educational purposes since the song itself is not crucial to the method being taught. Sure DJTT enjoys some marketing benifits from making the tutorials, but the technics being learned never rely on u buying anything so the only person in the chain getting something for nothing is the end viewer of the tutorial.

        It’s time for people to understand the changed nature of our media streams and the the inevitable eventuality of someone somewhere getting copies of your song for free. When u made the track did you picture a lot of people jamming to it, or just selling a lot of mp3s?

        • CUSP

          So why not ask the rights owner before using their work when you include it in yours?

          • rayrex

            Try being DJTT. You think you’re gonna have time to ask EVERY artist’s whose music you use to put it in a video?

            DJTT could have used Spice Girls, MJ, or whoever the hell. The song used doesnt really make any beneficial difference (except airplay, which tbh could only benefit the artist).

            Now if DJTT included download links, sure, it’d be foul play. But everybody seems to be missing the point that there was no financial gain on DJTT’s part about the song selection.

            – rayrex

          • CUSP

            That’s not how the world works. There is an established, appropriate path to take regarding issues like this. You don’t just get to do something because you deem so. If you need to do something as a matter of business, you hire someone to do the job… or face legal action from someone with a legitimate claim. My advice, be pro-active and solve conflicts before they go to court. Also, the “try being DJTT” attitude is inappropriate. I have had to seek permission as a matter of work, and I can tell you that throwing your weight around doesn’t win you any friends.

          • smutek

            Have you ever played a gig? Did you get permission from the rights owners of all the tracks you played prior to your set? Did you get paid for the gig?

            Do you see what type of precedent this complete dick move by Ten Balls sets? It goes completely against one of the key foundations of DJ culture, mixing and sharing music.

            Maybe one day we’ll look back fondly on the days of the mix tape, remembering how it was before every shitty little label started hitting every bedroom dj they could find with cease and desist orders for using their track in a promo tape or tut.

            Meanwhile dudes like you will be all like, “established and appropriate paths” and “that’s not how the world works”.

            Yeah man, maybe it is the letter of the law and all that, but it was a total dick move and a shitty thing to do.

          • CUSP

            The places I play pay at either are non-paying, private parties, or establishments that pay an entertainment license flat fee for the types of music played.

            I keep hearing “pay for your music” as in pay for all the mp3s you spin, but I see a lack of equal responsibility when making promotional videos which are a means to draw people to the website, which ultimately is either a non-profit educational organization, or a for-profit business.

            You claim that people like me are pulling off dick moves, but artists have the right to determine how their work is managed. You don’t just get a free pass because you didn’t make money on something. It’s rather awful of someone to claim someone is a dick because someone didn’t let you do whatever you wanted with their stuff for free. This isn’t even a new topic, the Digital Rights Act is almost 20 years old, and the debate had been settled long before that.

            I think part of the problem here is that most people don’t understand how Copyright works. You either protect your copyright, or you lose it, meaning if someone uses your copyrighted material in their work, and you don’t have a legal agreement allowing them to do so, you lose all future claims on your work. This is copyright law, not my opinion.

          • kebzer

            In the end who benefited from the ban of the video? Those morons or DJTT? Guess the answer.

          • CUSP

            No deal means no one won.

          • Geesus

            Exactly. And what I’m referencing is the Digital Rights Act.

            DJs, Producers, bands etc etc saw an opportunity to make even MORE money by using this new and upcoming media for their songs; AKA the internet. What they DIDN’T see is, the ENORMOUS amount of people who have the skills to remove any, and all aspects of protection for those songs. In other words, they shat themselves when they figured out about Napster, the ability to use 3rd party software to actually remove the music OUT OF YOUTUBE, other sites that allow you to upload songs you have either “stolen” or recorded without actually purchasing to now allow others to steal those songs … see the point I’m making?

            If music companies want to get their money, go back to selling hard-copies. CDs, Albums, cassettes and shoot, as Ean mentioned, sell the damn sheet music. Otherwise, they screwed themselves by trying to be greedy. There is no 100% way for them to get their money.

            DJTT just released and article about Soundcloud and how they are removing DJsets. I found out about this last year. I’m a single Dad who DJs for fun in my own damn bedroom. I’m basically making “mixed tapes” for my friends and wanted a place for them all to be able to hear and download what I put together. I don’t play bars, I don’t ever expect to be some multi-million dollar DJ; it’s for fun. I paid the fee to be a “member” of Soundcloud until, one day, I couldn’t up load a song I actually did purchase because it was in a set. After contacting SC about it, they denied my request and I left and cancelled my sub. Now, I’m on Mixcloud. People can’t download my sets but guess what? I can still share what I do. And if someone wants a copy, I can burn it or use a FTP like dropbox or my secured FTP that’s encrypted.

            Digital music changed the music and movie/TV industry forever. While I have never purchased anything after seeing a video here, it doesn’t mean i won’t. My favorite Podcast that I listen to though, hell yes I have gone out and bought TONs of dance music from.

            The company’s greed will keep them from ever really growing. They can fight these battles all day long. But to use an expression I grew up on, “Their just cutting off their nose to spite their face.”

          • It would introduce a tremendous amount of overhead, cost and delays in producing content. As a small team – we simply do not have the human recourses to manage that process and financially can’t afford to pay for music. The only real solution (unfortunately) is to only use content from partner labels that have provided explicit permission up-front.

          • CUSP

            Instead of seeing this as a an adversarial circumstance, you could establish direct accounts with BMI and ASCAP. This is something a CEO would have done through the legal council team as soon as the company started turning a profit. There isn’t a need to be angry or act in fashion that doesn’t serve you or your company well. Accept this as part of doing business, set up an account with these rights companies and pay them what they ask. At the end of the year, you take those receipts to your CPA and all those costs become write-offs. We had this conversation in person.

          • Geesus

            Question? How often do you visit this site Cusp? You do realize that DJTT started all this and still do offer these videos without the need for a paying membership. You can donate money to them, you can offer free services such as writing for them, if they deem you experienced and professional enough. Yes, they offer a shop to sell wares but so does Wal-Mart.

            Setting up an account with the ability to have rights to music they may use once in an educational article is not financially feasible or imo, worth DJTT time. If you want to continue to have free access to tutorials, don’t bite the hand that feeds you and tell them they should pay a substantial fee for rights to a song.

          • CUSP

            I think you’re confusing “what you’d like to be” with “what is.” I think few people (if any) are here for the new music. I’m sure there will be plenty of people sending tracks in for free, as is their right with their own property. The issue here is someone using someone else’s music (which is normally managed through digital rights). There are laws which govern how you may and may not use someone else’s work. DJTT is a for profit company and therefore is not allowed certain non-profit exemptions.

      • Toontown

        How much money did DJTT make with someone else’s property?

  • Kinetic Monkey

    Ean, you’re a great sales person with great energy and that, along with innovative hardware and brilliant user community, is part of the success of DJTechTools. It does however mean you’re probably going to be more focused on the benefits you can provide than the benefits you’re receiving. I think this is a real win-win situation whereby your instructionals are great because they use good music, and artists’ audiences are boosted by people watching your videos. While I think that the benefit to the artist is just as great as to DJTT, you ARE a recipient of a benefit from the artist (ie, your videos sounding great). Therefore if the artist or record label want to charge you for that benefit they should have the right to do so, and if an agreement cannot be reached a different song should be found. Many artists would be flattered and let you use their music for free, but they should be given the choice as to if their music is used or not. A separate point is that you class your videos as educational (which to me they have been), however there is also a heavy advertising / promotional edge to them (I’ve bought software and hardware BECAUSE of your videos).

  • Ed Paris

    Always got inspired by the music in the video. i still remember buying Stephan Bodzins “Phobos” right after Ean released a short routine using this song and a track by Missy Elliot. I think this was filmed at the watergate in berlin.

  • noxxi

    something cool could come of this, what if there was a weekly chart of the best free music released that week?

  • mattvanhorn

    I’ve bought a lot of songs that I was introduced to by DJTT videos. A major percentage of the ones I’ve seen, I’d say. It’s definitely a fair use, passing the last three tests completely and only marginally being “commercial” in the sense that it promotes DJTT’s brand.

    If this becomes an issue, I’d look at using music from the community here, and CC licensed stuff from splice.

    As it is, I won’t be buying anything from Tenwalls until this is sorted out.

  • Carl-Johan Linell

    1. Yes! Unless it is a genre a which I specifically do not like (This happens very, very rarely), I almost always end up grabbing it off of Beatport, Traxsource or whatever.
    2. Most definitely. As recently as yesterday, I discovered James Wilson’s excellent Movement EP.
    3. Generally, I’d leave you to figure out what works best for the tutorial. In Ean’s recent Hawtin inspired tutorials, picking suitable techno and tech-house makes sense. If the tutorial is on mixing D’n’B, pick D’n’B. As far as introductory / backing music, go with whatever fits the theme.
    4. That’s a tricky one, and one which I suppose comes down to the nature of DJTT. You’re undeniably both a community and a store, so there is bound to be some legal grey area there. But I suppose, without knowing, that it comes down to whether or not your videos can be said to be direct promotions of your products and store

    My two cents? If it comes down to whether or not to feature existing music in your videos, make it clear that your Youtube videos do not aim to promote your store.

  • Paul

    100% helps the artist. All publicity is good publicity, I’ve discovered a lot of cool new tunes through the DJTT tutorials that I’ve then gone on to purchase

  • i think this is quite messed up…but i guess thats the way the “business” side of the music business thinks …and is sad…but there’s another opportunity that presents itself here…since a lot of the members on this forum are dj’s and producers…why not crowd source your tracks as far as possible? you guys could start a pool of usable content and keep off the copyright radar while promoting some new talent at the same time.

    • ithinkmynameismoose

      Whilst I think it’s wrong that you’d have to do this. It may be the safest course of action. Have DJTT members sign one of those e-greements that none reads that basically states they grant permission for you to use it for educational purposes). It gives new artists exposure and keeps DJTT safe from a rather stupid side of the industry.

  • Mert

    I also bought 1-3 Track i listened 1st in one of your awesome tutorials… This is really Sad about Ten Walls… maybe a little bit to snooty…

  • Cleberson Pertile

    If you’re not making money out of it, it’s just plain simple and free PROMOTION. How the hell can someone be annoyed by this?
    If you are making money out of it, it’s business. (Considering that you got the track by legal ways).

    I agree to do this when it’s an UNRELEASED track. But not with a released one.

    I, for myself, would be so glad to see someone using a track of mine in anything.
    This really doesn’t look like Mario’s doing, but instead, some white-collar guy from the label.

    • J Crenshaw

      I think you highly misunderstand this website.. You think its free? You don’t think they are making money running this website? They just drop their normal job paychecks to pay for sever time, payroll etc?

      Yes they are making money, the educational videos bring them hits which in turn brings them more money.

      Its still someone elses work you are using. Then break it down, how many people do you think ACTUALLY buy tracks. Do they REALLY care about the 5 dollars of online revenue youd bring them from their cut.

      In some cases I hate copyright.. but as a music maker, I fully support it. Ask BEFORE HAND.. if its denied, find another song.. or heres a real good tip.. MAKE YOUR OWN.

      • Cleberson Pertile

        The video was not monetized. Therefore they were not making money with the track. These are the rules from youtube. “Indirect” money making is so abstract that you can apply to anything, therefore it’s not valid.
        If you go by these rules no one could ever play a set with other people’s music (which they bought legally).

        If no one plays your tracks you’re never gonna get out of anonimity.

  • Ibrahim Sha’ath

    I’ve definitely bought a couple of records after hearing them in DJTT videos. I think your use case is pretty fair, though I’m hardly a fan of tight intellectual property control.

    Since you’ve no commercial relationship with the music, and are giving the user the information they would need to buy it from the artist, it sounds pretty good to me.

    • J Crenshaw

      Then you dont make anything creative that people can “Free use”. Come back and formulate an opinion from the arist point of view when you’ve done so.

      • Ibrahim Sha’ath

        Oh, like my key detection software, you mean (GPL)?

        Or more like my band’s album (Creative Commons)?

        • Joseph Wilk

          Ha ha ha, oops! Ibrahim, thanks for the Keyfinder program, by the way. I’ve used it myself to reasonably good success and appreciate it very much!

        • Cleberson Pertile


  • J-Mo