Don’t Ruin a Perfect Evening

Get the Appropriate Licenses for Radio and TV in Restaurants and Bars

David D. Oxenford and Rachel S. Wolkowitz

©2016. Published in Landslide, Vol. 9, No. 1, September/October 2016, by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.

Music can help set the stage for a great dinner, and the decision about the coffee shop you patronize may depend on the music they play or whether they have live performances from time to time. Your choice of the location for a casual weekend lunch may be influenced by whether a restaurant or bar has the big game on their TV sets. While music and audiovisual content (i.e., DVDs, live television, Internet videos, streaming television and movies, etc.) may influence the choice of your eating or drinking venue or set the mood once you are there, they need to be part of the business and legal compliance plan for food entrepreneurs looking to open the next hot restaurant or bar. In most cases, rights for music and audiovisual content need to be secured, and the failure to do so can cause as much heartburn as a bad meal.

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