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 15: The resale right

Jørgen Blomqvist

Subjects: law - academic, intellectual property law


A right which may be said to be slightly related to the right of distribution is the resale right, a right for authors of works of fine art, writers and composers to obtain a share of the proceeds of the resale of original copies of their works and original manuscripts. The right is granted as a minimum right in Article 14ter(1) of the Berne Convention, but is limited significantly in paragraph (2) according to which '[t]he protection […] may be claimed in a country of the Union only if legislation in the country to which the author belongs so permits, and to the extent permitted by the country where this protection is claimed'. Accordingly the country of protection is allowed to determine whether the right be granted at all. This corresponds to the fact that when the right was introduced in the Convention, by far the majority of countries of the Union did not grant any such right, and it was therefore not made an obligatory minimum right. Furthermore under paragraph (2) the right can be subjected to material reciprocity instead of national treatment, and decisive in this respect is the right granted in the 'country to which the author belongs'. This must be understood as the country of which the author is a national or in which he or she is domiciled, and that is not necessarily the country of origin as defined in Article 5(4), see further the discussion of that provision in Chapter 5 (2).

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