Skip to 0 minutes and 7 seconds We’ve referred repeatedly to the effects of technological improvement on creative works. In addition to impacting creativity, by providing authors with new techniques and modes of expression, technology also offered new vehicles for the dissemination of artistic works. The agenda of negotiations and WIPO has followed these trends. Treaties in force have been changed and new treaties developed to make member states adapt their national legislation to remain in harmony. This was the case for sound recordings. Although many attempts to record and reproduce sound were made, during the 19th century, it was not until the 1920s that companies launched the sound recording business. Then, following World War II, magnetic tape recording changed the market.
Skip to 0 minutes and 55 seconds Technological advances led to the introduction of a range of consumer audio formats and devices. It also lead to new questions regarding the rights of those involved in the business, but who were these people? Beside composers that already have their rights protected by the Berne Convention, they were the performing singers and musicians. There were also the producers that invested in the recording of music with the aim of reproducing copies to be sold to the public. As we learned earlier, recording required the pre-authorization of the author or copyright holder to fix the song and reproduce copies for sale.
Skip to 1 minute and 35 seconds Before sound recording performers and musicians had earned a living performing live for the public in theatres, concert halls, and ballrooms, as well as on the radio. The development of a sound recording business, therefore, raise issues related to labour. Once the performance was recorded, it could be played repeatedly in the same spaces where the artists could previously given a live performance. This meant that the presence of the artist was no longer necessary, yet the recorded performance would continue to produce economic results. This situation was similar to that facing actors who used to perform on stage in front of the public and were paid for the daily performances. With the introduction of the film industry they were hired to work just once.
Skip to 2 minutes and 22 seconds The film’s producers, however, could continue to benefit from the commercial exploitation of the actors’ performances perpetually. Now we have a case related to the work of performers, such as singers, musicians, actors, and dancers. When they were hired for the purpose of fixation in a sound recording or film, their work would last longer than the moment when the performance was rendered. After World War II, the situation was included in WIPO’s agenda and resulted in the extension of copyright protection. In addition to the author the performers and the owners of the particular physical manifestation of artistic works were also to be included.
Skip to 3 minutes and 5 seconds This was the object of a new treaty called the Rome Convention which secured protection in performances for performers, in sound recordings for producers, and in broadcasts for broadcasting organisations. The Rome convention created a new category of rights called neighbouring rights or related rights. This name describes the direct connection with authors rights. The chain of rights begins with the author’s approval for the fixation of the work. If this is given, the final product will be carrying, not only the author’s rights, but also the rights of others involved in the production. So there are three groups who are able to claim neighbouring rights. Firstly, performers such as actors, musicians, dancers, and those who perform literary or artistic works.
Skip to 3 minutes and 56 seconds They have the right to consent or forbid certain acts such as the broadcasting, communication to the public, or the fixation of a live performance. Secondly, producers of phonograms, who have the right to authorise or prohibit the direct or indirect reproduction of their phonograms. And finally, broadcasting organisations, who have the right to authorise or prohibit the rebroadcasting, fixation, and reproduction of their broadcasts, including the communication of their television broadcasts to the public. We’ll discuss the connection between authors rights and neighbouring rights in greater detail next.
This video discusses the impact that certain innovations had on the creative process as well as issues they raised regarding the rights of creators.
It also brings new characters into our story since performers and producers have an interest in sound recordings and broadcasters need to guarantee control of their transmissions.
These are new rights that fit into the logic of the legal framework that has been developed since the beginning of our story.
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