Changes to Copyright Act due to tech developments in pipeline

Changes to Copyright Act due to tech developments in pipeline

The review is in view of technological developments in the past decades, and how they have led to immense changes in the way copyrighted works are created, distributed, accessed and used, says the Law Ministry.

SINGAPORE: To keep abreast with technological advances, business needs and societal developments, the Ministry of Law and the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore (IPOS) will be conducting a public consultation on proposed changes to the Copyright Act from Tuesday (Aug 23) to Oct 24 this year.

In a statement, the Law Ministry said the review was called in view of technological developments in the past decades, and how they have led to "immense changes" in the way copyrighted works are created, distributed, accessed and used.

The copyright law needs to "catch-up" to such developments, said Senior Minister of State for Law and Finance Indranee Rajah, who spoke at the opening of Singapore's IP Week@SG 2016 at Marina Bay Sands on Tuesday.

"These reviews will further strengthen our intellectual property (IP) regime and allow it to keep current," Ms Indranee said.

The proposed changes to the Act mainly relate to ensuring that the copyright law continue to provide an environment that benefits both creators and users.

The key proposed changes include:

- Allowing creators to own the copyright in certain specific works they are commissioned to create unless they agree otherwise.

- For creators to have right of attribution, regardless of whether they still own the copyright.

- Allowing everyone, subject to certain conditions, to use "orphan works" even when the owner cannot be identified and contacted for consent.

- Allowing text and data mining for the purpose of data analysis to support growth of the data analytics business sector.

- Allowing public (not-for-profit) schools to continue to develop and enhance their teaching methods using digital tools and the Internet.

Respondents may send their comments on the proposed changes to the Ministry of Law via the website or post.

A Masters programme in IP and Innovation Management was also launched at the event. Jointly developed by SIM University and IPOS, the programme aims to enrol 20 to 25 professionals with IP and innovative management skills each year, over the next three years.

Source: CNA/kk

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