Selling CDRs for Profit

Is it legal to cell CdRs. I notice I buy a lot of cds from ebay and while reading feedback it seems a lot of people are selling them. (and yes even not saying they are cdrs

Anyway is it illegal to sell these recordings? I had a friend make me copies and they sound outstanding.

no it is not legal to sell cdrs, unless they are of your own music

Chief’s Domain -

yes, it is legal to sell cdrs, unless it has some copyrighted stuff on it.

(why do I bother responding to such stupid questions!!! okay, let’s try that one again…)


<clear throat>

Markxxx, with all due respect, why is this a difficult question to you? I must be misunderstanding some details of your situation.

I want to know if it is illegal to sell them.

Already I have someone saying yes and someone saying no. Obviously it is a question that bears answering

Second, when I buy a CD I want the CD not at CDR.

Third, if it is illegal than it can’t be sold over ebay

Now my friend made me copies of cds and it obviously isn’t illegal to copy cds, but again, is is legal to sell these copies. It’s kind of like you can copy a video for your own use but you can’t sell it. Or is that wrong as well??

On a follow up to that last post here are some other things you can’t sell at ebay

Miscellaneous items:
   Human remains
   Live animals
   Illegal Animal parts and items
   Bulk email lists
   Counterfeit items
   Illegal drugs and drug paraphernalia
   Soiled underwear
   False ID documents
   Cable television or satellite dish descramblers
   Embargoed items (e.g. Cuban cigars)

Actually, both of them are saying the same thing.

Chief says: It’s not legal to sell them unless it’s your own music. Thus: It is illegal to sell cdrs that have someone else’s [copyrighted] material on them.

Keeves says: It is legal to sell them UNLESS they have copyrighted materal on it. Of course, it’s not illegal to sell material with YOUR OWN copyrighted material on it, because you can give yourself permission to do so. It is legal to sell cdrs that do not have [someone else’s] copyrighted materal, thus: It is illegal to sell cdrs that do have someone else’s [copyrighted] material on them.

Yes, you can make copies for your own personal use. One of the most blatant abuses of this idea I have heard was from a site that sold a product that would enable a user to use “backup” copies of Playstation CDs :slight_smile:

Actually, they both said no to the situation in question. The “yes” answer was it is legal to sell CDRs unless the CDR contains copyrighted material.

Selling CDR copies of copyrighted CDs is illegal. Making CDR copies of CDs you own for your own personal use is fine.

If you notify eBay of the auction in question they will remove it.

“You can’t run away forever; but there’s nothing wrong with getting a good head start.” — Jim Steinman

Dennis Matheson —
Hike, Dive, Ski, Climb —

Markxxx, you say that a friend made you copies of CDs. If those were regular music CDs-- or basically, anything that he payed money for-- you both broke the law.

As was mentioned above, it is legal to copy a CD for your own personal use. This means that (for instance) I may duplicate my Led Zeppelin CD, and keep one copy in my home CD collection and one in the car. But if I make the duplicate to give to someone else, that is illegal.

Disclaimer: It’s way too late and I don’t know if I’m making sense. Deal.

No, you can’t sell/buy legally a copyrighted music or software cdrom.

People get away with it at Ebay because Mark, ebay does NOT read each auction. They wait for someone to email them about some item that should not be in the auction being sold.
Thus, the big kidney thing the other day that went to $5M before they got word of it.

I’m not absolutely positive this is true. I suspect that it’s technically illegal, but it’s not worth the time of the recording industry to go after someone doing this.

God bless torq. Someone in the world actually respects intellectual property enough to wonder about personal copies.

But rest easy, torq, and copy away! This used to be a point of argument (mostly academic, for the reason you mention). But congress had a free minute and solved the issue in 1992 by amending Title 17 (the copyright laws) thusly:

Livin’ on Tums, Vitamin E and Rogaine

I agree with Torq on this one. I believe the copywright laws would not allow this under the fair use concept. Some software companies allow you to install the program on two PCs if you are not going to be using them simultaneously. Also, some encourage you to make a back-up copy in case the original goes bad, but definitely making a copy for a friend or probably even for two people in the same family to use is basically illegal.

Though the law may not prosecute, it is still wrong.


According to my lawyer (aka my brother), a consumer is specifically permitted to make copies of certain copyrighted material, as long as such copies are for personal, non-commercial use. If you share them with other people, or if you exhibit them to the public, you’re breaking the law.

Was this an incorrect explanation?

Of course I don’t fit in; I’m part of a better puzzle.

Add kidneys to the eBay-prohibited stuff!

Nope. It was perfect regarding personal use (which is separate, BTW, from the Fair Use doctrine, which is covered in Section 107 of Title 17. Regarding “sharing” the music with others, it depends on your definition." If you invite a friend over for a listen to your copied CD and a Philly Blunt, you’re ok from a Title 17 perspective, because it’s a non-commercial use even though another person is present during that use. If you sell the copy to your friend, you’ve done a bad thing.

Regarding public exhibition, the law is more complicated (but just as clear). If you operate a business such as a bar where music is played (no cover, but you pop CD’s into the player for atmosphere), you have a right to broadcast the music, but you must pay a compulsory license fee to the copyright owner. You can see how this would quickly become cumbersome, so more often you pay a general licensing fee covering anyrecorded music to ASCAP, who than divvies the money up according to its own formula. Just to make things more complicated there is a separate provision of the law to deal with jukeboxes (really).

For torq’s practicality reason, chasing down bars for the fee (IIRC a few hundred bucks/year) is more likely to occur in places where ASCAP has members and employees (NY, L.A., etc.) than in most of the country. But that’s the law.

If you want to take a look at the copyright laws, Cornell’s law school has the entire USC on the web in an easy-to-access format.

Livin’ on Tums, Vitamin E and Rogaine

Cool, that means I can stop losing sleep over the miniscule chance that all those tapes I made from my LPs (yes, I am that old) will get me arrested. Thanks!

Oh boy! One more nit before Labor Day –

It’s minuscule not miniscule. Derived from the same Latin root as minus and minimum, but unrelated to miniature. Since current English has begun to use mini- as a prefix for so many (mini?) things we’ve forgotten how to spell minuscule. The spelling of miniature is derived from minium a red pigment frequently used in miniature paintings.

This reminds me of a letter an author got once from a little boy: “Dear Sir, Your book tells me more about penguins than I want to know.”

“non sunt multiplicanda entia praeter necessitatem”
– William of Ockham

Of course, you have to throw in the bootleg trading area. Ask any Deadhead about trading concert tapes. The Grateful Dead allowed some concert goers to tape their shows off the soundboard for an extra fee (they figured, if someone is going to tape our shows, at least it should be a good copy). Other artists such as Led Zeppelin, the Beatles, and, recently, Tori Amos are heavily bootlegged. Although this is highly illegal, not much (is)(can be) done. You can arrest everybody who does it. Usually if fans who bootleg trade with others, the groups involved rarely do anything about it. A couple of years ago, the Italian govt shut down several major bootleggers who produced Beatles CD’s. Doesn’t matter, they’ll pop up somewhere else, make and sell a few thousand copies, and move on. The sad thing is, some of those bootlegs were of a much higher quality than some of the releases made by legitimate companies.

Apparently the folks at E-Bay don’t know a lot about the bootlegging industry because a lot of the Tori Amos stuff wouldn’t be there (I’m a Toriphile in case you didn’t guess). Some of it has been taken off (a cd & tape combo of her “Storytellers” show, for example).

I’m certainly not condoning the selling of bootleg CDR or tapes, but if you have to have that material, be prepared for the risks involved (legal prosecution, getting ripped off - try to convince the court to charge someone for NOT selling you illegal material!).

{{{No, you can’t sell/buy legally a copyrighted music or software cdrom.}}}—handy

Damn!! That means that I have to get rid of all those copyrighted CDs I bought at CDNow. :wink:

Common ¢ for all ages…
Doncha just hate word problems?
“If it takes a four-month old woodpecker, with a rubber bill, 9 months and 13 days to peck a hole through a Cypress log that is big enough to make 117 shingles, and it takes 165 shingles to make a bundle worth 93¢, how long will it take a cross-eyed grasshopper, with a cork leg, to kick all the seeds out of a dill pickle?”