Changes to copyright laws – calling all operators!

By | January 13, 2017

JG & Partners

Changes to copyright laws – calling all operators!

We think this is sufficiently topical and far-reaching to merit a one-off update. Please bear with us on this (and read on!). Recently introduced changes to section 72 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 will affect most, if not all, operators and letters of demand for additional licence fees are already in circulation.

This is in addition to any required TV licensing or licences from PPL and/or PRS.

Detailed scrutiny of the relevant law arising from the Sky prosecutions apparently revealed a possible flaw or inconsistency in copyright law which this change, detailed below, is designed to correct.

It affects the public showing of TV broadcasts. Previously section 72 allowed an exemption of the requirement for having the permission of certain copyright holders, including ‘film’. Film has now been removed as an exemption.

What this apparently technical change means is that those wishing to show broadcasts in public may now need to gain the permission of film rights holders to show the film within the broadcast, as is currently the case for certain other rights within the broadcast. Operators will be familiar with the required licences from PPL and PRS in relation to music contained in a broadcast or made more widely available.

MPLC (Motion Picture Licensing Company) are already actively seeking licence fees on behalf of studios they represent.

Intellectual Property Office guidance on this can be found here.

Be aware – and if you require any further clarification, please do contact us.

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