Sunday, April 13, 2008

UK - Turning Up the Heat on Collectives and the Copyright Tribunal

An interesting and important report just out on March 10, 2008 out from the UK House of Commons Committee on Innovation, Universities and Skill can be found here.

Its overall recommendations are these:

The Copyright Tribunal was established as an independent tribunal in 1988 to adjudicate in commercial disputes between copyright owners and users, to ensure that the monopoly of the owners and their agents, the collecting societies, is not abused.

From the outset there have been complaints about delay and the cost of going to the Copyright Tribunal. We find it unacceptable that the Intellectual Property Office, which has administrative responsibility for the Copyright Tribunal, has failed to address these problems in the past 20 years. At last it is waking up to need for improvement, which is now pressing.

Intellectual property is of increasing importance in the UK economy and the spread of digital technology is leading individuals and small businesses and institutions—in contrast to large companies—to become increasingly engaged in the distribution of creative works. In 2007 the Intellectual Property Office commissioned Review of the Copyright Tribunal produced 30 far-reaching recommendations, most of which have support from both copyright owners and users. The Government now needs to publish its response to the Review and to initiate action. It also needs to develop, as a matter of urgency, an affordable, alternative service that individuals and small businesses and institutions can use as well as a policy on works where the copyright owner cannot be established or traced.

(emphasis added)

Does any of this sound familiar to Canadians?

See my recent posting on this subject here and my recent paper on it here.

With all due respect, these are the sorts of questions we should be actually concerned with in Canada now - rather than, as some fear, the slavish enactment of a slightly modified DMCA when Canadian law is already stronger and better than US law in response to largely American based corporate and political interests.


No comments:

Post a Comment