Primer on International Copyright and Related Rights

Primer on International Copyright and Related Rights

Jørgen Blomqvist

The international law on copyright and related rights is comprehensive and complex, spanning over a large number of different treaties which have been compiled and amended over more than 125 years. This book gives a concise, but comprehensive introduction to the rules and their rationales. Its rights-oriented approach makes it equally valuable to the student and the practitioner who needs both an introduction to and overview over the international law in the field. The book explains all treaties relevant today, from the 1886 Berne Convention to the WIPO Marrakesh Treaty of 2013.

Chapter 1: Introduction

Jørgen Blomqvist

Subjects: law - academic, intellectual property law

Extract

National copyright protection has been around since the late fifteenth century, when the first privileges to print specific books were issued, and not long ago those interested in copyright were able to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the world's first copyright statute, the 1710 Statute of Anne. With few exceptions, national legislation in the field protected only national works, and for many years most countries left foreign works unprotected, unless they had acquired a particular local affinity, for example by being first published in the country. This was a troublesome and unsatisfactory situation for the authors and their publishers, because by then music, fine arts, drama and texts already frequently crossed borders and were used abroad, whether in the original form or in translation, or otherwise in adapted versions. In the nineteenth century some governments started to react to this situation, first by making bilateral agreements and later by adopting multilateral conventions for the purpose of securing mutual international protection of works from other contracting countries. As from the 1960s, the related (or neighbouring) rights of performers, producers of phonograms and broadcasting organizations were also included in this system of international protection through international conventions of their own.