Music In Mods and Modpacks (Copyright)

Vals NoisyToys

New Member
Jul 29, 2019
Note 1: Originally posted in a private section, where it was suggested I repost for public use. So here it is, with some additions.**
Note 2: This topic also applies to other copyrighted material but I'm most familiar with music copyright, thus it was the original topic of the post.

A plea to all you mod and mod pack makers:

Please, for the love of (insert diety of your choice), if you are going to put music in your mods make sure that
a) It's covered under royalty-free or creative commons, and
b) you provide proper attribution for it (required by creative commons for example).

This is a particular issue with auto-playing music. But any music (even a music disk or an easter egg) is still subject to copyright - even if the accidental playing is less likely. Trying to cover your (mod maker's) behind by claiming, "Oh, it's configurable." (default is usually ON), or "Well you have to do x to make it play, so I don't need to do copyright crap.", are both specious arguments - copyright still applies and you're the one who put it in the game, so yes, you are responsible for when it plays even if the user has to take a specific action to trigger the playback.

Unless of course, you aren't in the least bit worried about damaging your reputation as a reputable modder by pissing off the wrong high profile YouTuber or livestreamer because they received a copyright claim from music you put in your mod(pack), or worse, a copyright strike. Or if you're not worried about potentially being sued by a rabid music company.

Speaking just for myself, I may be small potatoes, but I'll be extremely pissed if I get a copyright claim (potential strike) or my video deleted because of unexpected music. Three strikes and your channel is deleted. So, yeah, it's a sensitive issue.

Recent examples of music in mods:
(Note: I'm not saying these are using copyrighted music (I don't know) but they certainly didn't display attribution when I ran across them either.)
* Vaskii's boss fight Gaia music in Botania (which I could at least turn off with the jukebox slider);
* Departed (Advent of Ascension mod, I believe) boss fights (which I could not turn off with jukebox slider).
The second I had no idea would play, so it was a bit late to prevent it from streaming even if there was a config option.

If you need me to provide further education on why this matters, I'd be happy to - I realize that music, fair-use, creative commons etc may be a subject that you aren't familiar with in regards to how it plays out in the real world. Ie - just because something might be ok under fair-use in theory doesn't mean it's actually okay in practice - because of how YouTube and music companies behave on the matter.

And FYI, if you've heard a piece of music in a lot of videos on YouTube that doesn't mean that piece is available for public use. Those content creators may have gotten special permission to use that music - and while that protects them, it doesn't protect anyone else wanting to use that music.

-- Val

Example attribution formats I've used or seen used in various situations:

Example 1:
"8bit Dungeon Boss"
Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

Example 2:
"8bit Dungeon Boss", "8bit Dungeon Level"
Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

Example 3: Minimum info would be name of song and artist.
"8bit Dungeon Boss" by Kevin MacLeod

Example 4:
Music = Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

A suggested method of providing attribution in Minecraft:
* When the music plays, put the attribution (or an abbreviated version) into chat.
* Also put the the detailed attribution information in a readme file.
This should cover everyone's behind if such attribution satisfies the license requirements to allow the music to be used in the first place (as it is with Creative Commons).
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