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CROSS-BORDER COPYRIGHT LICENSING

Law and Practice

CARLO SCOLLO LAVIZZARI, RENÉ VILJOEN

Copyright Licensing can no longer be considered purely from the perspective of the licensor’s home territory. This practical and wide-ranging reference work provides comprehensive coverage of the law and practice of cross-border licensing in a number of major territories, including China, the EU, India, Mexico, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, and the USA. The book, written by expert authors with insight from practice and from their home jurisdictions, focuses on both copyright licensing and competition law and, specifically, the inter-relation between these legal fields. The book is uniquely structured to provide both thematic coverage and detailed analysis of each territory’s applicable laws and regulations, highlighting and addressing the legal issues that are most critical in and relevant to licensing practice. Cross-Border Copyright Licensing is an essential starting point for anyone considering or advising on the implementation or enforcement of a copyright licensing program, in either developed and emerging markets.
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Chapter 8: UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

William S. Strong, Eric Hochstadt and Kayleigh Golish

Extract

Chapter 8, Section 1 This section begins with a brief overview of US copyright law, including the various forms of ownership and transfer of ownership; formalities of copyright notice and registration; duration and scope of protection; and limitations on rights including special exemptions, compulsory licenses, and fair use; all with special attention to ways in which US law differs from the laws of its major trading partners. A discussion of contracts and trade secrecy as alternative protections for copyrightable material concludes the introductory background material. Section 1 then turns to specific issues of licensing in the United States: exclusive and non-exclusive licenses, how they are created, and what rights they confer; certain statutory limitations on freedom of contract; recordation and the creation of security interests; bankruptcy considerations; remedies for breach of contract; contractual clauses regarding dispute resolution; and collective licensing (a relatively minor segment of the US market). Section 1 concludes with a very brief statement of a few general principles of US tax law applicable to copyrights. Chapter 8, Section 2 The notion of exclusive rights that characterize copyright and licensing schemes at times conflicts with laws and public policy considerations that impose restrictions on anticompetitive conduct. Although the Department of Justice plays an important role in enforcing prohibitions against anticompetitive conduct, private civil enforcement actions challenging licensing practices have become increasingly common. The music industry licensing illustrates the complex intersection between copyright law and antitrust law in the US.

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