“Establish Intellectual Property Rights(IPRs) Advisory Council to Protect Local Creative and Artistic Works”
19th October 2010
The article “Blurry Lines of intellectual property rights” (NST, 19 Oct, 2010 at page 20) raised several thorny issues pertaining to copyrights and the dilemma of local creative artists, actors, performers, etc in Malaysia.
This is not surprising since the majority of them were totally unaware of the protection rendered to them under the current Copyright Act 1987.
The dilemma of copyright rights ownership can be addressed by obtaining sound and legal advice at the outset. Unfortunately, such legal advice were not obtained either by sheer neglect and/or total ignorance with regards to the legal implication arising from the sale, transfer, management, etc of such copyright works.
Although the Copyright Act 1987 dealt with written/permanent form of creative/artistic works etc, this does not preclude them from seeking further legal redress due to the unfair advantage or inequitable bargaining power imposed upon them by the other parties at the material time of the agreement/contract.
Awareness programs and roadshows,etc must be carried out to highlight the protection granted by the Copyright Act 1987 for the following works :
- Literary works
- Musical works
- Artistic works
- Sound recordings
- Derivative works
Owners of such copyright works have total liberty to deal with them in any manner :
- Reproduction of the work in any form (photocopying, recording, etc.);
- Performing, showing, or playing the work to the public;
- Communication to the public;
- Distribution of copies to the public by sale or other transfer of ownership;
- Commercial rental to the public, etc
In this regard, the Law Of Equity and more recently the Law Of Restitution may be relied upon and argued in Court to reach a favourable decision. This class action will depends entirely on the cohesive approach taken by the respective industrial representative/stakeholders ie Film Producers’ Association, Actors’ Association, etc.
As a pre-emptive measure, there is a need the local creative and artistic industry to form an Intellectual Property Rights Advisory Council to uphold, protect and advance intellectual property rights(IPRs) matters and specifically copyrightable works in the interest of local creative and artistic industry in Malaysia.
There is also a need for effective communication and liaison with the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs, Industrial Development Authority and the Malaysian Intellectual Property Corporation.
Jeong Chun phuoc
and an advocate in Strategic Environment and Taxation Intelligence(SETI)
he can be reached at Jeongphu@yahoo.com